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Staff Review: I Remember You

Originally posted on Saturday, 03 May 2014 at ROPL.org.

By Yrsa Sigurðardóttir
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Review by Sarah Nagelbush, Adult Librarian

Good ghost stories are hard to find. Luckily, Sigurðardóttir’s novel is one of them. Set in Iceland, mostly on a remote island, I Remember Youis the story of a ghost and the people who stumble onto him. The story follows three 20/30 somethings on what begins as a harmless enough quest. The two women and one man must take a boat to the island, where they’ll be staying for a week. Their goal is to start work on a house they’ve purchased together. Originally, there were four, but the husband of one of the women died .Their trip begins poorly and, in spite of their best efforts (or perhaps because of them), goes downhill.

Sigurðardóttir’s writing is excellent and her sense of humor, which is found in her Thóra Gudmundsdóttir series (also available in our collection) manages to find its way into the horrors of I Remember You. Our three doomed 20/30 sometimes aren’t the only characters in this story. The island has a history of its own, which we’re given through the eyes of a psychiatrist. Sigurðardóttir weaves these three stories (the psychiatrist, the three people on the island and the island’s history) into a complicated (though not confusing) ghost story.

The novel is best read in broad daylight, unless you want to scare yourself silly. It’s not a horror story in the obvious sense, it’s what you don’t see (or what you hear) that’ll get you. An enjoyed, exciting and yes, slightly terrifying read. If you’re a fan of Johan Theorin and John Ajvide Lindqvist’s books, you’ll love I Remember You. If you’re a fan of Sigurðardóttir’s writing style and don’t mind a ghost story, you’ll also love it. And, of course, if you liked Sarah Water’s The Little Stranger, chances are you’ll enjoy this one, too.

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