Memory is the name a lonely lost girl takes after she wakes up in an unfamiliar location without any of her memories. Together with another girl she makes a quick alliance with, Memory winds up being chased by everything from dragons to a king. She struggles to find out any truth about herself while also dealing with the truths about those she’s traveling with.
Memory’s Wake was written with a young adult audience in mind. The first half of the book is very fast paced. Selina hit the ground running with her first few chapters. We’re treated to Memory’s point-of-view most often so the audience understands just how scared and frustrated the main character is feeling. This helps for the reader to identify with her, but it doesn’t always help in giving us a clear sense of what actually is going on. I also found Memory not to be a very solid character at times. She did a few things that seemed kind of against the character that she was shaping up to be. I also didn’t have an entirely clear vision of the world I was reading about. World building isn’t the main objective of this novel, I know that, but I think more description would have helped. This is a world of corsets and full length dresses, but aside from one particular black dress I couldn’t tell you what anyone else was really wearing in detail. I couldn’t see it in my mind. The same held true for the magic and the Fae.
As far as plot goes, it’s pretty solid. The character’s objectives are laid out pretty clearly in the beginning of the book (it’s essentially a save the princess story). The story never really drags and the pacing helps the novel move along quickly.
Memory’s Wake is a good first novel, but I can’t help thinking that the hand of an editor would have helped it to be even better. Selina Fenech decided to self-publish versus going through a publisher because she became pregnant and wanted to avoid the stress and the competitiveness of traditional publishing.
Two more novels are planned in this series and I have the feeling that the story will improve with each book.