Love Water Memory

Love Water Memory

by Jennie Shortridge
4.5 20

Hardcover(Large Print)

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Love Water Memory 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 20 reviews.
TheStephanieLoves More than 1 year ago
Lucie Walker used to be the kind of Type-A woman who meticulously planned everything: what she did at her day job, what she ate for breakfast, what she would wear to her wedding. Losing her memory two months before her 40th birthday was not on the agenda. After she is found knees-deep in the water hundreds of miles from home, she is sent to the hospital, where she is greeted by a handsome man who pulls her into a painfully unfamiliar lover's embrace. She finally realizes she is Lucie Walker, the Lucie Walker who planned everything and has a caring fiancé; the Lucie Walker whom she does not remember. Now, in the world her previous self left behind, Lucie is alone, without even her own memory to keep her company... and in this world, she needs to trust someone since she can no longer trust herself. The entire process of Grady and Lucie reacquainting—finding love and companionship in each other all over again—was clever, well-paced, and inevitably romantic. Grady's pain of missing the old Lucie—his meticulous, aloof Lucie—but struggle over falling for the new one—the warm, sweet Lucie—is relatable and raw, while Lucie's inability to remember everything about the man she's supposed to love, equally difficult. Shortridge accurately portrays the helplessness that the couple fall into during this tragedy, which, as Lucie discovers as she slowly recovers her memory through various environmental triggers, occurred in the wake of different kind of tragedy that Grady is reluctant to bring up. Grady is plagued by the guilt of what happened at home that caused Lucie to flee in the first place, but he can't bring it up with the new Lucie—not when he's feeling first-time butterflies all over again, not when, this time around, he actually may have a shot to make her happy. Grady is a flawed, but in essence, perfect hero; he is a man to fall in love with. I love how he is sensitive and thoughtful, and sometimes recedes into his own thoughts. He is a beta hero who, although shy and rather fragile, listens to his gut, thinks too deeply, and always acts with passion. We get both new Lucie's and Grady's perspectives in the third person, so it was difficult to really sympathize with either character intimately. I felt bad for the characters because of the frustration and impossibility of renewing their original relationship, but I couldn't really side with either of them, especially Lucie. Because she pretty much doesn't have an identity throughout the novel (although it does slowly build up as she learns more and more about her repressed past), her perspective is like that of an infant's; she continuously discovers people, places, and things around her, but not very deeply. However, this curiosity leads her to reconnecting with a part of her family that she strictly kept silent about before her amnesic episode. Old Lucie was the kind of woman who was so damaged by childhood that she couldn't even speak of it, but now that she's not only willing to talk to Grady about whatever "it" is, but also actively trying to find out why she might have entered dissociative fugue, the hideous, inconceivable demons of her past begin to surface. This is the part I really couldn't get into. The loss in Lucie's teenage years is terrible, yes, and the trigger that caused her to completely blank out, even more traumatic, but there is no twist or no heart-pounding discovery. Small snippets of old Lucie's life flicker in her now empty mind alluding some sort of ghastly experience, but when readers are finally enlightened, it's a bit of a letdown. The climax is predictable, and I'll admit it's not like it's no big deal, but it was just poorly executed. Afterwards, the closing action just drooped... nothing is really resolved, and the ending doesn't offer much either. While the book is wholly about Lucie's dissociative fugue, it does very little to entertain the subject of mental illness. It's an obvious fact that trauma and repression can lead to memory loss; Shortridge does not elaborate upon this. In fact, Lucie does not even visit a psychiatrist, so if you're thinking about trying this one solely because you like stories about mental disorders, this isn't really the best book to pick up. I was also not a huge fan of the writing. Shortridge can tell a damn good story with a fresh voice—very readable, very modern—but her style just isn't eloquent. The subject matter is fascinating, and the story illuminates upon how obstacles can be overcome by the power of love, but the writing just seemed very clumsy to me. There is nothing poetic or expressive in Shortridge's hand; I was anticipating it to be gorgeous, sentimental, and detailed, but instead found it to be rather mediocre. Pros: Characters are vividly formed; seem so human // Gradual mystery // Complex family dynamics portrayed // Very easy to read; kept me on edge and wanting to read more // Complicated emotions regarding identity // Strong message on the power of love Cons: Writing isn't that substantial // While the subject matter is grave, Lucie's path to discovery is nothing profound // Difficult to sympathize with situation and characters // Mental illness is not deeply portrayed Verdict: Thoroughly moving and provocative, Love Water Memory examines the effects of trauma, the principles and necessity of family, and the miraculous gift of second chances. Although I was not impressed by the unembellished writing style and the fact that mental health isn't significantly addressed, I did enjoy this luminescent novel of the certain magic of love—the magic that, for Lucie and Grady, separates a brand new start from the misfortune of reliving the same pain. The emotions are heavy, while the carefully hidden, agonizingly uncovered secrets, extremely grave in Jennie Shortridge's newest; this is a tender, serious story about being stronger than the sum of your weaknesses, and the opportunity to reconcile after inevitably hurting the ones you love. Rating: 7 out of 10 hearts (4 stars): Not perfect, but overall enjoyable; borrow, don't buy!  Source: Complimentary copy provided by publisher via tour publicist in exchange for an honest and unbiased review (thank you, Gallery Books and Literati Author Services!).
AymTru More than 1 year ago
From the beginning to the end, this writer helped me along in the self-discovery process of the main character and succeeded in bringing to life the authentic voices of all the characters. I could have read on, but I'm glad the story came to a satisfying conclusion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tender, realistic, hopeful. Very good writing .
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book, would recommend reading.
JennMcLean More than 1 year ago
Lucie finds herself standing knee deep in freezing cold water in San Francisco bay unable to remember who she is or how she got there. She is taken to the hospital and diagnosed with a dissociative fugue state and has been missing for 8 days. When her fiancé Grady comes to pick her up and take her back home to Seattle she doesn't recognize him or remember anything about their life together. When she's home she also doesn't remember the house or anything personal in her life. Lucie struggles to remember who she is and as she gets details from the people around her she isn't sure she likes the person she's learning about. The new Lucie is easy to like but the old Lucie is a colder, controlling, buttoned up executive type and Grady struggles with the change in the woman he loves. Both Lucie and Grady have tumultuous pasts and Lucie is determined to figure out what caused her to lose herself. I have read several stories about amnesia and I tend to gravitate to them because I love the psychological aspect of the mystery. Much of the time there's a bad guy who manipulates the main character's memory of their past but this time we don't have a real manipulation even though Grady does tend to hold details back from Lucie ostensibly to protect her but also to protect himself. In "Love Water Memory" the main story centers around Lucie's quest to find out who she used to be and deal with the fallout of losing herself. I found myself both enjoying the psychological plot line and also being frustrated by it. I wanted there to be more communication between Lucie and Grady instead of this self protective push-pull that the reader experiences between the characters. If I were Lucie, all I'd want was the truth and for everyone around me to help me find that. I also found it frustrating that no one seemed worried that there was an actual wedding planned that was only 8 weeks away! No one cancels anything and Lucie doesn't even go through the invites to see who she knows that might be able to help her understand her past. I really resonated with some of the new experiences that Lucie had, it made me think about how I'd feel in that situation. The whole book made me think about the people around me and how we would deal with a situation like this. This is the part I found the most enjoying, how the author made me think about things, feel the feelings of Lucie as she struggled to reshape her life. I found this book to be an easy read and although I found Grady's behavior and excessively passive nature a little annoying, I did enjoy the journey through Lucie's life as I learned more and more about her and why she was the way she was. I would give this book a 3.5 out of 5 but since I can't use half numbers I'll bump it up to a 4 because of the excellent way the author made the reader feel Lucie's struggles.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
anovelreview_blogspot_com More than 1 year ago
The amnesia story is not an uncommon theme, and LOVE WATER MEMORY felt more genuine than most I've read. Lucie 'wakes up' for lack of a better word, and no longer knows who she is. She knows somethings to be true about the world around her, but that's it. She finds herself being led into this new world by a man she has no memory of. Her fiance, Grady, seems to be holding something back from the very beginning. The novel moves back and forth from Lucie to Grady's perspective, so we the reader find out what right away. But like the two characters we somehow can't put all the pieces together. When Lucie comes back, she comes back as a very different woman...almost like she got to reset. Lucie had what seemed to be a hard edge to her before and a soft Lucie has taken her place. But it leaves the question: What had made Lucie so hard before? Grady didn't have the answers, as he realizes how little he knew the 'real' Lucie. I would say LOVE WATER MEMORY is one of my favorite books to date. I loved how both Lucie and Grady had to look at themselves, dig deep into their own pasts to see what defined who they were and why, not only that, but did they want those incidents to define who they were? Could they learn to love each other again? Could they? Were they even still compatible? Not only was this a great story, I thought it was very well written. I became emotionally invested in what happened to Lucie (past and present). I am highly recommending LOVE WATER MEMORY!
CrystalMarie218 More than 1 year ago
First and foremost I would like to thank Simon and Schuster for approving the blog for this book and especially for sending me the paperback of it! I cannot wait to share it with my friends who I think will really enjoy it. This book begins with some swimmers finding Lucie in knee deep water in her Armani suit with no memory of who she is or why she is there. She is taken the the hospital and diagnosed with dissociative fugue which is when someone loses their sense of personal identity and tend to temporarily flee. She is "claimed" by Grady, who says he is her fiancee and they are due to get married in six weeks. From there, we watch as Lucie begins to know Grady all over again and finds herself. This book was so deep and poignant that I hate to even write about anything she discovers as I want you to feel it for yourself for the first time while reading it. The main theme is that Lucie has no family except for an aunt, Helen, who is desperate to reconnect with her niece. When we find out what caused Lucie to become an orphan pretty much, it is quite shocking for the reader and obviously a major life changer for Lucie. This book was so well written I felt like I could have been there living each day with Lucie as she tries to recover from her illness and figure out her new place in life. She has a hard time believing how she behaved in her former time and has to come to terms with it and become someone "new" that she likes. We also get alternating POV's and hear Grady's side of the story and also how he deals with this "new" person after knowing someone entirely different for the past five years. I highly recommend this read to anyone! I especially love books about people with amnesia and must say this one touched me in a way no other has. There was no easy fix in this one and she didn't miraculously wake up one day and have everything figured out. It was a struggle and a journey and I loved living every second of it. I am now a fan of the author and will be heading on over to Amazon to check out her other works and will be reading more by her in the near future. Reviewed by Mystery for Crystal’s Many Reviewers *Copy provided for honest review*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
two-brainbook_reviewersDH More than 1 year ago
When I received this book in the mail, I was extremely excited to read it. The book is well written and has a plot like I never have read before. Very original and enjoyed it immensely. The story goes straight into Lucie losing her memory and is found in a place unknown. has no idea who she is and the ones she loves. Throughout this book her main plan is to find her past self. The one person that loves her most is Grady. I am going to say this first, I love him. He is very patient, loving and calm. Exact opposite of who Lucie use to be. How can she keep her relationship going with a man that still loves her past self. The life she lived before was what she strived to find out about. Even things that Lucie kept Grady from knowing. There are things from her childhood that are mouth dropping that I can't give anymore away! I recommend this book to anyone that loves a great story. Believable characters that you feel you may know someone like them. I truly did love the new Lucie and Grady. I rate this book a 4.4. Surprising ending!
GraceDZ More than 1 year ago
Can you imagine coming to in a strange place and not knowing who you are or how you got there? Your memory...wiped clean! Kind of a scary thought, isn't it? That is what happens to Lucie Walker. When Lucie learns of her identity, she finds out she is engaged to Grady Goodall. When he picks her up at the hospital, Lucie's journey to piece together her past begins. What will she discover about her former self? Love Water Memory is beautifully told from the POV of three people...mostly Lucie and Grady and a little from Lucie's Aunt Helen. I liked how this book is told in multiple views, and I think it worked best that way as it gave me a sense of the big picture. With Lucie's POV, I felt all her fears, frustrations, and curiosity of the unknown. When Grady takes her home, she is basically going home with a stranger, and this is where Grady's POV becomes essential. His view not only consists of memories of their lives together and how much he loves her, but also includes all his worries and own painful experiences. They must now navigate the waters of the unknown to find the truth, to perhaps reconnecting, and it's an arduous process. I spent a few days completely wrapped up in Love Water Memory, and I found this story absolutely thought-provoking! Ms. Shortridge's writing flows with vivid and moving storytelling. "She didn't know him at all, and yet, there was something that told her she did. 'It's okay,' she said again and reached out to embrace him, to let him embrace her." This is a story of learning to deal, learning to move on, and eventually learning the true meaning of love. It's a great reminder that the human mind is powerful, yet it has the ability to protect itself when necessary. Love Water Memory is truly a compelling read that left me feeling full of hope. *A complimentary copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
Constance4794 More than 1 year ago
Love Water Memory is told through three viewpoints: Lucie, Grady, and Helen. Lucie suffers from amnesia. The doctors aren’t sure why. They suspect an incident triggered it, but since Lucie can’t remember and Grady isn’t talking—nobody knows. Helen is Lucie’s estranged aunt and Grady tries to protect Lucie from her. The old Lucie wouldn’t talk about her childhood, her parents, or her aunt. Her parents are dead and Helen may be the only one who has the key to why Lucie has chosen to forget. Will Lucie ever remember who she was? She’s not sure she wants to. The old Lucie doesn’t have any friends. All the old Lucie did was to work ferociously as a headhunter and run. This new Lucie makes friends, she likes who she is, and yet her past haunts her. She knows she’ll never find peace or be able to marry Grady until she remembers. And when she does remember, will she still want to marry Grady? Love Water Memory is an engaging story that explores identity and how much our past impacts our present.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
GrammyReading More than 1 year ago
this book made me happy to read it..not because the story was overwhelmingly jolly and bright..but because of the hope it instilled..reminding me of how fortunate we are when we can identify the simplest things..ourselves, our loved ones, our past, and even whatever present situation exists in our forget, to not know, to yearn for missing pieces and parts of prevent yourself from past pain by forgetting who, and what, and why, and how....and yet the ability to reinvent yourself, to work at being better, doing more, transforming the who that you were....never give five stars, but the complex simplicity of this story earned it
JudiRohrig More than 1 year ago
Terrific dive inside! LOVE WATER MEMORY explores the upturned life of Lucie Walker who suddenly becomes conscious knee-deep in the San Francisco Bay. But it isn't just Lucie who struggles to find herself again. Her fiance Grady must accomplish his own wade inland. This was an impossible book to put down and left me wondering how different I'd be if I couldn't remember who I'd already decided who I was. Terrific story. Well told!
cindymt More than 1 year ago
What if something hit your re-set? Just booted the old programs without any data? Would you like who you were? Would you even recognize who you were? That is what happened to Lucie. The story follows Lucie and her fiancée Grady as they learn who they are together and who Lucie is/was. All kinds of things come up about Lucie and her past. This is a story of hope, essentially, and the characters and situations are well done. Lots of good parallels between love and water and memory plus how we’re buoyed by all three. Received free copy for review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
fuzzmom More than 1 year ago
Lucie Walker....who is that? Even Lucie doesn't know. She comes to consciousnesses knee deep in San Francisco bay, with no idea who she is or why she is there. She ends up in the psych ward, and on the news...which is how she was found by her fiance Grady. Slowly, she begins to realize that she is not the same Lucie who left Grady a week before. She isn't sure she would want to be that Lucie! Controlling, distant, maybe even unfriendly... Follow along as she slowly uncovers her past, old memories that can effect the rest of her life. Others think some memories are too hard, too horrible to be remembered at all. A fascinating peek inside a human mind. Don't start reading this one will be up all night reading!
DiiMI More than 1 year ago
The first page pulls you into the deep end. Lucie is found, standing knee-deep in the San Francisco Bay, dressed in her Armani suit. She has no idea who she is or how she got there. News coverage in hopes of finding her identity bring her fiance, Grady to her side, all the way from Seattle. Going 'home' does not jog her memory, Grady is a stranger to her, but she sees what a good person he is. What we learn through Grady's thoughts and seeing post-amnesia Lucie is that the old Lucie wasn't all that likable, being demanding, precise, rigid and a loner who refused to open up about herself or her past. New Lucie is friendly, outgoing, sweet, but still has that headstrong attitude. Which is the real Lucie? Why has she blocked out her past? What does it take to 'fix' her? It's obvious that Grady cares for the new Lucie, possibly more than the old Lucie, whom he used to help hide himself from his own feelings of inadequacy and weakness, after all, his life was always run by overbearing, strong, over-protective women. Then, there is Lucie's long estranged aunt, who reconnects with her after almost two decades. I fell in love with this story, written so vibrantly, yet so delicately, like watching a red rose unfold as Lucie, Grady and Helen heal from their past wounds. This ARC copy of Love Water Memory was given to me by NetGalley and Gallery Books in exchange for an honest review. Pub Date Apr 2 2013