The Art of Forgetting follows successful senior editor Marissa. She has a cushy job, the typical boyfriend, and generally likes hanging back and letting others take the reins. It’s worked out for her so far. Marissa has but one good friend whom she’s had since high school, outgoing, flirty, dancer Julia. Remember those reins Marissa likes to pass off; well Julia has those in a tight grip. All that changes while Marissa heads out to meet up with her best friend, and sees Julia hit by a cab. It appears physically as though Julia is no worse for wear, but it soon becomes evident that not all is right with Julia. She has suffered a brain injury and charismatic Julia shifts into someone whose personality Marissa no longer recognizes. She becomes incredibly unfiltered and honest stirring up old resentments Marissa has begrudgingly buried long ago.
Their friendship is far from perfect. Both characters irked me at points as I never fully sympathize with either one. I disliked that Marissa sat so idly by as Julia controlled her life, and I was angry at Julia for being so crass to Marissa after she had taken her first love from her back in high school out of petty jealousy, putting even more strain on their already delicate relationship. As friendships naturally go in real life, there are ups and downs, quirks we dislike or are fond of, but naturally we gravitate towards people whom have qualities we admire or find in ourselves. Forgiving and forgetting, as the title suggests, are important if one wishes to have any sort of extended relationship. I understood that message, but because I had no investment in the characters I only found this read to be so-so. Nonetheless, I have no doubt many women will find solace in its pages.
A moving and insightful debut novel of great friendship interrupted. Can the relationship survive when the memories are gone?
Marissa Rogers never wanted to be an alpha; beta suited her just fine. Taking charge without taking credit had always paid off: vaulting her to senior editor at a glossy magazine; keeping the peace with her critical, weight-obsessed mother; and enjoying the benefits of being best friends with gorgeous, charismatic, absolutely alpha Julia Ferrar.
And then Julia gets hit by a cab. She survives with minor obvious injuries, but brain damage steals her memory and alters her personality, possibly forever. Suddenly, Marissa is thrown into the role of alpha friend. As Julia struggles to regain her memory- dredging up issues Marissa would rather forget, including the fact that Julia asked her to abandon the love of her life ten years ago- Marissa's own equilibrium is shaken.
With the help of a dozen girls, she reluctantly agrees to coach in an after-school running program. There, Marissa uncovers her inner confidence and finds the courage to reexamine her past and take control of her future.
The Art of Forgetting is a story about the power of friendship, the memories and myths that hold us back, and the delicate balance between forgiving and forgetting.