November 22, 2012

Christopher Pike: "Remember Me 3: The Last Story"

Title: Remember Me 3: The Last Story [on Amazon | on Goodreads]
Series: Remember Me (3rd of 3 books)
Author: Christopher Pike [Facebook | Goodreads]
Genres: Supernatural 
Year: 1995
Age: 12+
Stars: 3/5
Pros: Well-established female lead. Story gets closure.
Cons: More no-real-mystery (see RM 2). More clich├ęs. More new age blurbs (again, if you're not into it). Moderate sex references. Some seriously out-of-character moments.
Will appeal to: Those who still need more Shari Cooper.

Blurb: Shari Cooper had died once, and then returned to Earth as a Wanderer. Shari has regained her memory of her previous life. She has realized her purpose in returning to mortal life - to write stories for young people to help them understand the immortal life that is to follow. And it is not long before Shari and her books are known all over the world. Then one special night a story comes to her. An ancient tale that speaks of the origin of mankind and the purpose of human life. Shari begins to write it down, sure that it is nothing more than a wonderful fable. But what Shari doesn't know is that her new book is true - a mystical blueprint that warns of a great danger to humanity from creatures who despise all human beings, but who have a unique and terrifying hatred for Wanderers. Creatures who will go to any length to stop Shari's story from being published. (Amazon excerpt)

Review: Given the above blurb, you may wonder why I didn't apply a "Mystery" label to this book. There's a simple explanation: this is not a mystery. There are only a couple of possible suspects in this book, and once one of them is gone, the math is consequential. Also, don't be fooled - this is not a story about Shari trying to uncover the culprit of a murder plan against herself. Only at the end of the book we do realize someone has been wanting her dead all along. And she with us.
RM 3 opens three years after the ongoings in the previous book. Shari-Jean (see RM 2) is now a famous writer, living with a still crippled, sexually incapable Peter (this is crucial to the development of the story). She is also plagued by strong headaches, courtesy of Jean's fall from Lenny's balcony. She's still surronded by her old friends - Jim, Jo - but seems to have neglected her (or Jean's) Hispanic roots. Also, she was supposed to write inspirational stories for the young, telling them that death is not what it seems and they shouldn't be afraid of it and we really are all one and blah blah, but apparently, she tends to write the same kind of horror high-school stuff Pike more than often delivers. Notable exception: Shari did write a book called Remember Me, the story of her own death and rebirth. [...]

A movie is being made from Shari's first YA novel, starring Bob - an arrogant, rude new actor - but primarily Roger, the leading man. Roger starts flirting with Shari, and she falls for his charms, to the point where she takes him home one night. Her sexual escapade is only prevented by Jacob - a blind kid who's staying with Shari and Peter for a while - walking on them. After that, Shari confesses her almost-betrayal to Peter and leaves. Oh, she's human all right, given her situation - remember Peter can't have sex - but still. A great character ruined.
Shari senses there's something peculiar about Roger, and begins to suspect him to be a Wanderer, just like herself. So she turns to Garrett (the man who investigated her own death, now a private detective) in order to know more about him. Garrett is suspicious of Shari, because of her writing Remember Me with situations and characters that he actually remembers well.
All this stuff is happening while Shari is writing a new story called The Starlight Crystal (only loosely related to Pike's book of the same name), a story she feels crucial, though she can't say why. Also, in the meantime, both Shari and Peter (and Roger later on) attend some lectures by a character called the Yogi, who may or may not be the same as the Rishi from the second book.
In the end, there's a reconciliation, a death, a near-death and a miracle of love. And a final and real death. Shari's story comes full circle. Though I don't buy her last confrontation with her alleged-mother-who-wasn't-really-her-mother...totally out of character, though sweet.
This third installment in Shari's story is darker and a little more action-packed than the second, at least toward the end - though it sacrifices a character who didn't deserve it in the process - but it's still lacking. No real mystery, lots of new age blurbs again...well, far more than before, actually...and some serious out-of-character moments. The story-within-the-story feels forced, though it's supposed to be related with what is happening. Anyway, this book is worth reading, at least for those who need closure about Shari. Only, like with RM 2, you'll have to bear with its quirks.


For my review of "Remember Me" (first installment in the series) click here.
For my review of "Remember Me 2: The Return" (second installment in the series) click here.
For more books by Christopher Pike click here.

2 comments:

  1. Hey, this is Sveta :) Thanks for becoming a subscriber on my blog. Really good good review and can't wait to see more of them on here :D Keep up the good work!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by and being so nice :). More Pike reviews to come!

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