One of our August #allthebookreviews titles! And another one of the many books releasing on August 1st! Check back later for Chandra’s thoughts on this one, too!
Big thanks to Mulholland Books for the advanced copy in exchange for my honest review!
YESTERDAY by Felicia Yap was definitely a unique reading experience – how can you solve a murder when you can’t remember yesterday?
My Thoughts: 4/5 stars
YESTERDAY by Felicia Yap is definitely in a mystery/thriller category all on its own. This was an incredibly unique reading experience and I thoroughly enjoyed it! The synopsis was definitely right in comparing this to MEMENTO. So, off the bat, I’d say if you did not like that film and found it too confusing, then I’d say this won’t be the book for you!
Imagine being divided into classes based on your memory – not necessarily what you remember though, its based on how much you can remember. There are two groups that society is divided into: the Monos and the Duos. The majority is the Monos, and they can only remember a day’s worth, while the elite Duos can remember two days’ worth.
We follow Claire and Mark, they’re a rare coupling in this world. Claire is a Mono housewife, while her husband is a Duo novelist-turned-politician. Their marriage is one that is an example of their new hope for society between the classes. In Claire’s mind, they have the perfect marriage – one of equality and tolerance. Until one day, a woman’s body is discovered. This woman is Mark’s mistress and that places him as the prime suspect.
The book jumps between four perspectives: Mark, Claire, the Detective, and the Victim of the murder. With everyone’s memories erasing after a minimum of 24 hours, how are you supposed to solve a murder and find the truth?
Writing in diaries, notebooks, photographs with labels, and many other methods can be used to remind yourself of events or information. This is where the MEMENTO feel comes in. Where he has the specific things he reminds himself of every day – who he is, what he’s doing, and other basic information. I couldn’t imagine not being able to remember more than two days (if I was lucky enough to be a Duo).
This can be a confusing concept and I think that Felicia Yap did a great job executing this. Not only was it an intriguing read, but it makes you think about what you would do if this was our reality. With how often people say that the memory is imperfect and things can change, what if you didn’t have lasting memories? How do you trust that what is written down is actually the truth?
I have so many more questions about this Mono/Duo society. I will say that the ending kind of took a weird turn, but overall I still enjoyed the read! If you’re looking for a unique thriller and liked the MEMENTO concept, then this is the next book for you!
Now I need to go watch Memento! I’ll always love that movie, ever since we watched in my high school film studies class.