Thursday, February 10, 2011

Bookanista Feature: Angie Smibert's MEMENTO NORA

I'm gonna switch it up now for the Bookanista post today: today, I'm not only featuring a fantabulous book (MEMENTO NORA), but this post is also a part of a book tour! With prizes involved! :D

First, lemme tell you a little bit about the book and why you should rush out and buy it as soon as it hits shelves (April 1st). MEMENTO NORA is the debut by Angie Smibert, a fellow Leaguer. Check out the official book webpage here.

First, there's the cover. Lookit. It's pretty darn stunning--and, I think, fits the tone of the book very well. There are subtle details in it that I loved even more while reading the book (such as the font for Angie's name--very fitting for what Nora becomes a part of).

But of course, the inside is the important thing. I thought a LOT about what I could say about MEMENTO NORA that would explain why I read it obsessively in two nights, and this is the best I could do:

Of all the dystopian worlds in print, 
this is the one that I think is most likely
 to happen in our society.  

Which should both intrigue you and terrify you. Look, I adore HUNGER GAMES, but I'm not sure if we ever would really get to that point in our world. Things would have to change drastically before America becomes Panem. A lot of apocalyptical dystopians require...the apocalypse--some huge event that will happen in the future to make everything different.

But MEMENTO NORA is the kind of book that I think could happen, in our world...very, very soon. We don't need President Snow, we don't need the moon to get knocked closer to Earth, we don't need A-bombs to wipe out the population. We just need our world to get just a little more of everything it already is, and MEMENTO NORA could actually happen.

Memento Nora Blog Tour

In Nora's world, one pill will erase negative memories, and Nora must decide whether she wants to keep all her memories, including the bad ones, and what price she's willing to pay for it.

Angie's gathered together a group of writers to share their memories--and if you comment on each stop of the blog tour, you'll get points for a drawing of the awesome prize on the right. Details for the contest are here.

Which means...I have to tell you about my most spit-your-Coke-out-through-your-nose-laughing-at-me memory.

Be warned: it involves underwear.

In college, I was working as a RA, and one of the events that I coordinated in the dorm was a trip to the local ice skating rink. First, let me tell all you Yankees out there with your hockey and your frozen ponds and your ability to drive in the snow: people in the South do NOT tend to know how to ice skate. We don't have naturally frozen ponds, we don't have our own skates, and we are terrified of ice.

So perhaps an ice-skating event was not the best choice for me.

But I did it--and I got fifteen or twenty people to follow me to rink. We're all just slip-sliding on the ice, holding onto the side like six year olds at the roller rink for the first time. Anyone who picked up any speed would crash into the wall or purposefully fall in order to stop. We were...bad. Bad. But for the most part, we were having fun.

Except this one girl.

She was a sweetheart, and very shy, and the only reason she was even AT the event was because I'd talked her into it. And she. Was. Terrified. I had skated around the rink maybe five times before she'd worked up the courage to stand in skates. Five more times before she'd actually taken the three steps to the ice from the bench.

I skate up to her.

"What's wrong?" I ask.

"I'm scared of falling," she says in a very tiny voice.

"Don't be scared!" I say cheerfully. "None of us are good; we're all going to fall! Just get out here and have fun!"

She shook her head; she was sure that if she fell, she would become the laughingstock of the whole rink. Nothing I said could convince her otherwise. She grabbed the side of the rink and teetered onto the ice, but she look petrified and miserable the whole time.

So I decided to take action. I purposefully staged myself to skate in front of her--and fell. On purpose. I'm talking flailing limbs, crashing into the ice, just a full-out, total wipe out. A huge, everyone-look-at-me, crash.

Which actually kinda hurt.

But everyone saw me fall--including the scared girl--and she saw that nothing bad really happened. I smiled and made a joke of it and got up and kept skating, and everything was fine. She ventured away from the wall, and soon she was having a good time and laughing along with everyone else.

There was a lot of laughter, actually.

And soon I noticed that the laughter followed me all around the rink.

Surely my fall wasn't that funny? I kept skating, wondering at what people were laughing at. And pointing at. And then I realized.

They were laughing at my butt.

Because when I had wiped out so totally on the pants had ripped. My butt--covered in embarrassingly bright blue underpants--was hanging out of my pants for everyone on the rink to see. This was not a minor tear in the fabric. The entire seam was open and everything was showing.

No good deed goes unpunished (or unclothed) indeed....

Hope you all enjoyed laughing at my expense! Be sure to comment to this blog post for a chance to win a MEMENTO NORA prize pack, and go to Angie's site and comment for a second entry! Each week, a new blogger will have a new memory to share, and you will have another chance to comment and rack up more entries! Next week, Bettina Restrepo, author of ILLEGAL will share her memory on Angie's blog.

For more Bookanista Posts, go here:


Diva Schuyler said...

This book looks fantastic! And ultra creepy, because I read a few months back about a pill that could help people with PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder) "forget" or distance themselves from memories that trigger flashbacks. I have PTSD, and while the idea of not having certain memories is incredibly tempting, I can't imagine having any part of my life just...erased. Dealing with the consequences of violence, or just plain embarrassing moments, is far better than being a happy automaton.

Twitter: @ReadersInk

Christine Tyler said...

Intriguing review! Now I want to read it!

Stasia said...

Nothing like an embarassing underwear story. (I've got a killer from third grade myself!) Thanks for the great review! Can't wait to read MEMENTO NORA.

Carolina M. Valdez Schneider said...

Dang, that is one embarrassing moment. Reminds me of when I fell at the ice rink a few years ago...while videotaping my daughter's birthday party, in front of all the parents and children and my camera went flying and my head made an audible thump. I probably had a concussion, seeing as I could hardly see from the pain to the back of my head (I was so terrified of breaking the camera that I didn't bother trying to catch myself), that I refused to make a big deal of it.

But you...and your blue underwear. Oh dear. You poor girl. But what a memory.

Memento Nora sounds fabulous. And kind of crazy to me because I'd actually come up with the same idea in 2009 (a pill that erases negative memories), but never followed through with it. Presumably she did a much better job with it than I would have.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Great review. I've been wanting to read Memento Nora. I have to admit, though, the highlight was you memory story! :-)

lisa and laura said...

OOH--your review is fascinating--something that could actually happen? Fascinating and terrifying at the same time. And your story is priceless. I love your good deed and I'm sure that's something the girl will never forget!

Carrie Harris said...

BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! I adore you, Beth. Plain and simple.

Oh, and I agree about MN being a POSSIBLE dystopian. I've read a few this year that I could honestly see happening, and that made them even more intense!

Cory Jackson said...

Thank you for sharing that. So awesome. And I'm curious about the book, too!

Orchid said...

Sounds like a fascinating new story. ^_^

Anonymous said...

I'm taking part of the 2011 debut author challenge and this book is on my radar as a MUST READ!!! I would love to win this book!!!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

I'm blushing just reading that embarrassing moment! You musta died. I once walked through an office with my skirt caught up in my tights. Mortified.
The thought of that pill is terrifying, and you're right it's a very real scenario. Must read this book.

Christina Farley said...

I love your story! It's something that would happen to me. And now I'm going to have to check out that book.

Shana Silver said...

LOL! Your story is adorable. I can't even imagine...

But I could imagine something like Nora's future happening, which is scary. I agree that it's always more interesting to read a dystopian that could actually happen. I'm intrigued!

Mariah said...

This book sounds really interesting. And a dystopian that could actually happen very soon? Scary!

Jessica said...

OMG. *snort* Had a similar work! I bent down to pick a book up off the floor and the entire seam down the back of my pants just gave butt showage!! Thankfully I had on a cardigan which I immediately wrapped around my waist and I keep a sewing kit in my office, so I went into the Ladies' and gingerly sewed them back up, but then I still made my husband drive 45 mins. to bring me a new pair of pants for the rest of my shift!!

Bookish Delights said...

Angie's book sounds like a great dystopian book and I like how it is one that could possibly happen in the future. Beth, thanks for sharing a was nice of you to fall so that girl wouldn't feel so hesitant to skate. And I think we've all had a totally embarrassing moment or two sometime in our life, but at the end of the day it is fun to look back on and laugh about it when we get older.

Val said...

I really want to read Memento Nora too. It sounds like a really interesting book. Great cover too.

Thanks for sharing your memory, those pant ripping ones are the worst!

Val at Truth Be Told Blog
truthbetold004 at gmail dot com

Avery said...

I'd love to be entered into this giveaway- the book sounds amazing!

Thanks a bunch!

____ said...

Hilarious, Beth! What's a story without underwear?! I can't wait to read Memento Nora, so this contest is very apt for me right now! Thanks :)

Bwyatt said...

All I can say Beth is... AAHAHAHAHAHA! :0) If it makes you feel better, I use to be a promotions assistant at a radio station. Which means mostly I cleaned out vehicles etc. One day I stepped up into the van to start cleaning and my pants ripped. We're talking ripped all the way up my inner thigh and through the crotch up to my waist band. Not pretty. I spent the rest of the day ducktaped into my pants. But the guys loved it! They laughed at me for weeks!

Vivien said...

I'm really eager to read this novel. It sounds amazing. Great memory. lol

Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books) said...

I have no clue how I originally missed this, but I have to say I'm happy to discover it now. And I did laugh. Sorry, Beth, but it was an inevitability. Had I been at an ice rink and witnessed the same thing, I would have laughed. Had it been me, I would have wanted to bury myself in snow and never be seen again.

I guess it's a good thing that never happened to me.

Twitter: @Nikkayme

Noelli Spanelli said...

oh no! that must have been horrible! i would have died if I were you! but, life goes on, right? I've been wanting to read Momento Nora for over a month now and really want to win her giveaway because I don't want to wait until April! wish me luck!

Scoot said...

LOL.. oh man, no good deed indeed! Having your pants rip in public is a beating, my sis n'law went through a very similar situation. Not fun! Thanks for sharing about the book and your memory. :) seescootread[at]gmail[dot]com

Litza said...

Haha! That is a fantastic memory! Odd enough, it sounds very similar to one of my own...

Memento Nora also looks amazing. I'll definitely have to check it out!