Title: Shattered Memories
Author: Susan Harris
Published: June 16th, 2015
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing
Genre: YAm Dystopian Thriller
Content Warning: Adult language, graphic violence, and sexual content
Recommended Age: 16+
Synopsis: A terrible tragedy forced Alana McCarthy to forget a year of her life. Now she is to be executed for a crime she does not remember committing—the murder of her entire family. Lost and alone, Alana is terrified of unlocking secrets buried so deep inside her mind that she’s willing to forget the one person who could set her free.
Daniel Costello hasn’t forgotten about Alana, and he will do anything and everything to protect the girl he loves. But first, Alana needs to unlock her memories and find out the truth about what happened the night her family was killed.
The day of her execution is set. Together, will Alana and Daniel be able to uncover the truth behind her family’s deaths before it’s too late?
Excerpt from Shattered Memories by Susan Harris:
Suddenly I was angry… angry at my parents for dying and leaving me alone… angry at Sophia for being too small to defend herself… angry at Daniel for giving me false hope… angry at myself for letting pathetic fantasies take over my mind.
I jumped off the bed and screamed. The next thing I knew I had used what little strength left to overturn the bed, scattering all the bedding to the floor. I took one of the pillows and beat it across the wall. Then I kicked the bin with such force it smashed into the door with a sickening thud.
While continuing on my furious rampage, the door slid open and strong arms captured me from behind, holding my own in place. I struggled to break free and kicked out, but those arms would not let me go. I cried in frustration and tasted the saltiness of the tears on my lips.
“Shush, Alana, please… come on… calm down for me or else they are going to shock you. Hurts like a bitch. Come on, girl… shush. I got you.”
Connors’ voice sounded in my ear, and he kept shushing me until I stilled in his arms. My legs gave out, and we both went to the floor. Connors loosened his grip on me but still held me tight. My sobs became louder, and the pain in my chest was so bad that I thought I was dying. Through my sobs, I heard Connors say that I was okay and to please just give him a minute. I heard someone argue with him, and he snarled and told them to piss off. The tears soaked my top, and I felt nothing but tiredness as I shoved against Connors, needing to breathe. He did not let go.
My god, I felt so lost. I closed my eyes and screamed out the last of my frustration and anger before tiredness won out. I gave in and let the darkness pull me under.
About the Author:
Susan Harris is a writer from Cork in Ireland. An avid reader, she quickly grew to love books in the supernatural/fantasy genre. When she is not writing or reading, she loves music, oriental cultures, tattoos, anything Disney and psychology. If she wasn’t a writer she would love to be a FBI profiler or a PA for Dave Grohl or Jared Leto.
What sets your book apart from other books in the same genre?
I think Shattered Memories differs from other books in the same genre as I used real life events here in Ireland to shape the history and predict the future you might say. One night while watching a news report about in introduction of water charges and all the other price hikes our country was facing, I then saw a report on the housing crisis and homelessness. I began to think what would happen if we couldn’t pay back our debt and the country went bankrupt. From there it was simply a spark for my crazy mind to envision Ireland being sold off and made into a prison.
In comparison to say your Katniss’ and Tris’, Alana is selfish in her endeavours because all she wants is to remember. She isn’t afraid to die but is terrified of dying and not knowing whether or not she committed this terrible crime. Alana tries to shy away from conflict in the prison but she just can’t hide her nurturing nature. You become enamoured to her and her plight as well as the fact that Daniel loves her so strongly that he will risk it all to try and save her.
The book is also told from dual perspective so you get a glimpse into both mind sets and there are not many books out there that have done that.
From there I guess you can say that Shattered Memories has an equally tragic story behind it. From people who have read the book, they say that the story and the characters are realistic. In my novel I tried to make the story as true to life as possible. There was no point in writing it any other way or the readers would know that I did not feel what I was writing. Some stories sugar coat the realness of life and I didn’t want that for Shattered Memories. I wanted a raw, emotional and beautiful love story for Alana and Daniel, and I hope that separates Shattered Memories and makes it stand out.
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