The Hidden Memory of Objects by Danielle Mages Amato is a book that encompasses loss, grief, friendship, and learning to heal in a beautiful story that will leave readers speechless and wanting for more.
Megan Brown’s brother, Tyler died, but no one understands how — or why. When the police tell her that he died from a drug overdose, and potentially a suicide, Megan is crushed. The brother she had known and loved — was it possible that she didn’t know him at all?
Heartbroken, she starts sifting through his old things, hoping to find some answers. But when she stumbles upon an old cigar box, one that was found on Tyler’s body after his death, intense pain fills her head at its touch. Confused, Megan starts touching other belongings of Tyler’s and realizes that when she touches some objects, she has visions of what happened in the past to the owners of the objects. Desperate for answers, she teams up with an charming friend of Tyler’s, and an old friend of her own to find out what happened that fateful day.
The Hidden Memory of Objects is a little bit of fantasy, coming-of-age, and mystery all wrapped up in a compelling story. While i don’t usually enjoy fantasy, this novel had me engrossed. Megan is such a sensitive, well-written character, and I loved Eric and Nathan as well. Because it deals with loss, this book was difficult to read, but it was worth it. The plot was well-constructed and I loved how unique it was. The visions into the past, and the connections with Lincoln’s murder added an unconventional and educational twist to the story plot that I loved.
Another important thing that this novel did was discuss Megan’s grief — and not just to advance the plot. It didn’t skip all the emotional baggage and difficult healing process, instead, this book acknowledged it, and actually dealt with it, so kudos for that.
This book gets a 9.5/10. There were many elements in the book that I loved, but the mystery aspect of the story wasn’t satisfactory. I didn’t predict the ending at all, and I always like it when there are little clues that would make you go “ohhhhh!” once you reach the conclusion, but this book just didn’t have them. It fits more into the coming-of-age, fantasy, and even historical fiction genres than it did mystery, but that doesn’t mean that it wasn’t an absolutely wonderful read. I would recommend this book, but not without a trigger warning. (suicide, death)