Young Adult Literature


Persistence of Memory
by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes


From Booklist
Thanks to her arsenal of pills, 16-year-old schizophrenic Erin has kept her violent alter ego, Shevaun, at bay long enough to start public school and make friends. Shevaun, however, is not a construct of Erin’s mind, as she’s always believed; Shevaun is a 500-year-old vampire living with her witch lover, Adjila. When Erin wakes up in Shevaun’s body for the first time in 18 months, Adjila becomes aware of this strange connection and determines to sever it. First, though, they must find Erin and discover why the link exists. Erin’s perspective, skewed through her perceived mental illness, is an interesting one, and Sassy, her shapeshifter friend, adds a refreshing dose of humor. Atwater-Rhodes sets up an intriguing idea—that supernatural powers can be misdiagnosed as mental illness by the mundane world—but ultimately fails to fully explore it. While the link between Erin and Shevaun is fascinating, the particulars are so convoluted and rapidly introduced that the explanation is confusing, as is the resolution. Still, the author’s fans will likely enjoy this supernatural tale. Grades 7-10. --Krista Hutley