From the dust jacket:
International bestseller M.J. Rose has written a gripping and unforgettable novel about a woman paralyzed by the past, a man robbed of his future, and a centuries old secret. The dreads are back. As a child, Meer Logan was haunted by memories of another time and place, always accompanied by the faint strains of elusive music. Now the past has reached out again in the form of a strange letter that sets her on a journey to Vienna to unlock the mystery of who she once was. With each step, she comes closer to remembering connections between a clandestine reincarnationist society, a lost flute linked to Ludwig van Beethoven, and David Yalom, a journalist who understands all too well how the past affects the future. David knows loss first hand–terrorism is a reality that cost him his family. He’s seen every solution promised by security experts around the world–and he’s seen every solution fail. Now, in a concert hall in Vienna, he plans to force the world to understand the cost of those failures in a single, violent act. Because those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it…
In her follow-up to her ground-breaking book The Reincarnationist, M. J. Rose revisits the themes of reincarnation and past life regression in The Memorist. The book is written in a very similar style to its prequel; it combines multiple time periods and storylines to create a suspense thriller that involves the previous incarnations of the characters.
It is not necessary to read The Reincarnationist before picking up The Memorist. The books really do stand alone, and though events in The Reincarnationist are vaguely referred to, The Memorist definitely is its own novel. If I am not mistaken, only a few characters from The Reincarnationist make a return appearance.
One of the main reasons I enjoy Rose’s novels is because they bring forward a concept that is somewhat controversial and definitely not part of mainstream beliefs: reincarnation. You don’t necessarily have to believe in reincarnation to enjoy these books; Rose presents the concept as simple and straightforward, and even if you don’t agree with it, it is interesting to read about. Though I believe in reincarnation, I can’t say I find the idea of past memories asserting themselves with such a vengeance believable. However, it is interesting to read about.
Though The Memorist is very suspenseful and manages to keep the reader hooked throughout most of the novel, I felt like it was a bit too long. There seemed to be too many past life regression storylines – just the one (going back to Beethoven’s time) would have sufficed. Also, I found myself losing interest at the end; it seemed like it went on longer than it needed to.
Still, The Memorist is a very interesting and creative book that will keep the reader on the edge of their seat. I recommend this one to anyone who is interested in reading about reincarnation or enjoys the historical thriller genre of Dan Brown and Steve Berry.