Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner


The ratings:
5 stars  excellent
4 stars  very good
3 stars  good
2 stars  fair
1 stars  poor

Blog stats:

Navigate the site:

Books by the Blogger:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


paperback | Kindle | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


paperback | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

Advertise: Rates & stats

Authors & publishers:
I've decided to stop accepting review copies. The downside of getting buried in free books is that reading increasingly becomes an obligatory act. After some seven years of blogging books, it's time for me to return to the simple pleasure of reading only the books I want to read, when I want to read them.



  
From a random review:

  

« Sebold, Alice: The Almost Moon | Main | Stark, Richard: Ask the Parrot »

Price, Jill: The Woman Who Can't Forget

  

Printer-friendly page! Use print preview to see how this page will appear.

<Free Press © 2008, 263 pages
3.5 stars

It's no surprise that Jill Price has become the go-to girl in her family for reminders about birthdays and anniversaries: she's incapable of forgetting them. Given a date from 1980 on--her memory before she was fourteen is spottier--she can rattle off a laundry list of her activities on that day and provide headline news as well, provided she was aware of the event at the time. Her memory works in reverse, too: given an event, she can tell you its date and significance in her own life. Her extraordinary memory is limited to the autobiographical, however. She is not one of those savants who can memorize long lists of prime numbers or the value of pi to hundreds of places. And in fact her aptitude for rote memorization of that sort is relatively poor, which proved problematic for her in school.

In her autobiography, Price discusses, but only superficially, memory-related scientific research in general and the tests that have been conducted on her own memory. (She was the subject of a paper published in the scientific journal Neurocase.) But mostly she tells us the story of her life with an emphasis on how her bizarre memory has kept her from living normally. The advantages of having a nearly perfect autobiographical memory are obvious: she can remember with perfect clarity, for example, the giddy joy she felt when she first met her husband. But the negatives are more numerous. Price can also remember, with perfect clarity, the conversation she had with doctors about allowing them to harvest her husband's organs once he was taken off life support. Nor can she will herself not to remember such things: Price's memories come to her unbidden, replaying in her head in apparently random order. Moreover, when Price remembers she relives the emotion of the original experience. So deaths and slights and embarrassments and childhood terror are as painful and frightening and sad as they were originally. Interestingly, the intensity of Price's relived emotion is sometimes evident on the page. In recalling painful episodes from her adolescence, Price's voice is imbued with the resentments of a teenager toward her parents.

Price collaborated on her book with a writer, Bart Davis. The resulting narrative is a quick read with a conversational tone. Unfortunately, the writing is bland and occasionally repetitive. This is a shame, because Price certainly has an interesting story to tell. Were it written in snappier prose, her book might have been--forgive me--unforgettable.

Tags: , , , ,

< Tweet it! | Reblog
https://www.book-blog.com/2008/07/price-jill-the.html
Book-blog.com reviews by Debra Hamel are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/).

Comments

1.

This sounds a fascinating story. I think we all have these clear memories to some extent - and I know I feel embarrassed again when I remember some incident from childhood - but to relive it completely must be close to traumatising. Poor woman!

2.

Interestingly, I kept thinking of you while reading it, Clare. Just because I had myself convinced that I'd heard of the book from you. But I think instead I saw a review in Newsweek.

3.

That is very strange. My memory seems to work so that I can't remember anything from the past but my wife is always around to remind me of anything I did wrong. ;)

4.

Rebecca was just talking about some incident with a dog in our front yard. Neither David nor I remember it, so we figured it's simply a lost episode that no longer matters.

5.

Wow, that sounds like such a painful thing to endure. And such a narrowly-structured abnormality! It's hard to imagine.

6.

BEST BOOKS prompt, at MEME EXPRESS

http://memeexpress.blogspot.com

Book-bloggers welcome . . especially today!

Blessings,
Linda




Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear on this weblog until the author has approved them.

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In


About the blogger: Debra is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece, including Trying Neaira: The True Story of a Courtesan's Scandalous Life in Ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.

  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  






The Sunday Salon.com



Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.