Author: V.C. Andrews
They have and unbreakable bond…an inescapable bond.
Kaylee and Haylee have always done everything together whether in full agreement or not. That’s expected from them as identical twins. Alike in every single way imaginable. Even in their DNA. It keeps mother happy.
But now they are officially apart. After Haylee’s betrayal that led to horrendous events, Kaylee is given a chance to start anew at the private school of Littlefield. Trying to bloom a new life isn’t so simple, but she’s determined to make her dark past disappear even if that means pretending she never had a twin. With Haylee haunting Kaylee’s every step and thought, she knows that being truly free isn’t that easy and Haylee isn’t through with her. Not even close.
WARNING/DISCLAIMER: This trilogy wasn’t written by the original author, but from the notes she left behind. Also, this is the final book in the series, so you may be confused and feel spoiled by the following review, hence the warning.
The conclusion of a trilogy is meant to be iconic and the high peak where the final showdown happens and a calm sea of closure follows. Secrets that were unknown to the narrator, and sometimes to the reader, come to light and the final battle is well on its way. I am sad that this isn’t the case with Shattered Memories. While the major battle did happen—Kaylee is battling her inner turmoil while overcoming her trauma from Andrew Cabot, her kidnapper, and her sister, Haylee—there is still so much missing and lacking for me. I had trouble diving into the book like I did with Broken Glass (full review here) and even The Mirror Sisters (full review here).
I couldn’t get into the book as much as I wanted to. While Kaylee sounded like a full-fledged adult when she spoke (which was constantly pointed out), her thoughts and other dialogue just didn’t click because it didn’t sound the same. I understand that Kaylee’s life has changed forever, but the story is from her POV. What is seen, heard, etc, from that POV should match to how she speaks. Well, I think so. It’s a tidbit that made me itch. It was like switching gears and that’s jarring.
Much like the previous two books, there was a streak of repetitive and I feel repetitive for mentioning it. From what Marcy saying the same thing again and again to Mason’s continued spite for Haylee, I was just put off whenever they graced the pages. I couldn’t hold on to the story. There was a lackluster. I just feel like there wasn’t enough in regard to dealing with her kidnapping and I just wasn’t fully convinced of how realistic this was for Kaylee. There was a flash here and a flash there, but I didn’t feel it. And for something this painful I needed to. Mason’s disowning of Haylee was disturbing, too. More than anything, I would believe a father who loved his children, while being upset, would want the best help for a child that is as disturbed as Haylee.
However, the new characters truly made this book worthwhile. Well, except for Marcy. Claudia, Troy and Marcy along with a couple others come onto the scene of Kaylee’s fresh start at Littlefield. Troy, the strong, holier-than-thou, intelligent, silent and sits alone type, and Claudia, the new, but has her own dark secrets, roommate really gave flare to this final chapter of The Mirror Sisters. Both of them were able to understand Kaylee on a level that didn’t make her feel judged or freak-like and that was a nice breath of fresh air. The three of them each went through something terrible and to watch how it affected how they let people into their lives was realistic and great. And then there’s Marcy. Dear, sweet, hyperactive, loud Marcy. The constant need to live through Kaylee was strange and over-dramatic. She makes the perfect teenage girl that doesn’t have a single problem in the world. But that didn’t make me like her all that much. I just hope I wasn’t like that when I was her age. Yet, I’m sure if I asked my mom she’d say I was very much like that.
I did have a few questions that kept coming up over and over again as I read. I will warn you, they are spoiler-y because they also reference Broken Glass. I don’t usually have questions, but I was scratching my head here and there.
What happened to Mr. Moccasin? Kaylee was desperate for the kitty at the very end of Broken Glass, but he’s never seen again. There wasn’t one single mention of him in Shattered Memories.
What happened to Andrew Cabot? I know the man was arrested for what he did to Kaylee, but that’s the last I heard about him. I honestly wanted to know about the trial/sentencing because that seems very important, but it’s as if his arrest was just it, that Kaylee needed to know nothing more. Also, I was quite peeved, with Broken Glass. As Kaylee came out on the gurney at the end, Andrew was nowhere in sight. The guy is psycho and there was no screaming or threatening? I just don’t believe it, not after everything he did to her. That man was unhinged, yet silent in the end? Queue creepy, and don’t forget peeved, shivers.
Okay, so my last question is in relation to Troy, who I adore if you couldn’t tell from above. As you know, if you’ve read it, Kaylee is dealing with not only psychological trauma, but physical trauma. She got her hair chopped off and is currently wearing a wig. I am really curious to know how Troy responded. I gave a thorough read-through and didn’t get an inkling of how he felt about it. Maybe it not getting mentioned showed that he was more than okay with it.
Overall, while I enjoyed the newly added characters, I felt deflated from beginning to end. There was too much clashing underneath the story and that can really mess up how I feel when I’m reading, and I read for nothing more than the sheer enjoyment. I dislike potholes in a story just as much as I dislike them on my street. The book was nothing like the two before it, which saddens me.
“You don’t look like me anymore, Kaylee. You’re prettier than I am now, but Mother can’t stand that, I’m sure. Did you forget how she wants us to be? You’re killing her by being so much prettier than me. You’re the one giving her the nervous breakdown now.” (Haylee to Kaylee, p. 55)
“Psychiatry is a form of voodoo.” (Mason to Kaylee, p.62)
“Weren’t you ever taught to put your disappointments in a bag of rocks and let them sink to the bottom of the sea?” (Kaylee to Marcy, p. 188)
More to come soon…
P.S. Song today? Breath of Life by Florence + The Machine.
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Goodreads: Kat J.