Book Review: The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner

May 4, 2016

The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner is a fictional book about two teenagers and their experience on September 11, 2001 and days afterwards. Ms. Polisner writes women fiction and young adult books.

  • 288 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250095522

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The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner is a fast, easy read but thought provoking nonetheless. The terrorist attack in New York City on 9/11/2001 changed America, America’s foreign policy and the world. A generation of kids is now growing up not knowing the profound effect this event had on the whole world.

The author wrote a profound book which captures the helplessness against a great tragedy, but also the profound human relationships which can occur from such a tragedy. While 9/11 is in the background of the story the throughout the novel, it is not “about” 9/11 and the author manages, somehow, to steer clear of sensationalism or sappy narrative.

As someone who lived, and witnessed, 911 I found this book to be an allegory to the loss of innocence of a nation, which spoke to me, in parallel to the loss of innocence of young adults. This book, an easy and immersive read, has something for everyone.

Kyle Donohue, a 16 year old student at Stuyvesant High School, witness the first tower in the World Trade Center comes down on September 11, 2001. Kyle walks home with thousands of people across the Brooklyn Bridges when he sees a girl, suffering from amnesia, covered in ash and brings her home with him.

Kyle’s father is a detective working in Ground Zero, his mother and sister are on a trip to California and he is taking care of his disabled uncle until the world calms down around him. All this while trying to figure out what to do with his new guest.

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Zohar — Man of la Book
Dis­claimer:I got this book for free
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