Today I’m pleased to be taking part in the blog tour for Remember Me. I’m sharing an extract from the book with thanks to Anne Cater for inviting me on the tour and to the publisher for my copy of the extract.
In her first book, Shobna Gulati sets out to reclaim her mother’s past after her death, and in turn, discovers a huge amount about herself and their relationship.
Remember Me? captures the powerful emotions that these memories hold to both Shobna and her mother; secrets they had collectively buried and also the concealment of her mother’s condition. What ensues is a story of cultural assimilation, identity and familial shame.
How much do we know ourselves and each other?
This is a story of things that are lost, but also of things that can be found in the most unexpected of places. It is a story of the things you remember and the things you think you have forgotten, the stories we then tell ourselves and what we choose to share with others. It is my story and it is my mother’s, and it is about being her daughter. It is about the function of memory within the human construct of time, where we give our daily lives a beginning, a middle and an end. It is also a story about the assumption of shame and the presumption of it too, and of bias and prejudice, based only on the shades of our Brown skins.
We spend our entire lives trying to figure out the rudimentary questions: Who are we when we are with others, and when we are alone? Whose lives have we affected? How did we end up like This? Have we done the right thing? How will we be remembered? These questions entered my mind when I was caring for my mother, and I wondered how she would want to be remembered.
I had always believed I had a clear idea of the adult I’d become, and in turn knew who my mother was, both in relation to me and also as a woman in her own right. But the truth is, we never really know ourselves or each other fully. Our memory is an imaginative, creative, destructive and selective place. The memories the brain builds and designs are never quite representative of the life we have lived, and they’re not in the stuff we collect and leave behind either. As my mother’s memory began to fall apart, I began to see behind the curated memories. And I found a woman who made clear choices grown from a deep, quiet love for her husband and family, and who could live her life fully with fairness and sincerity even when her world fractured.
I never said the words ‘I love you’ to my mum. Just as she never said those words to me. But we knew.
Remember Me is available from Amazon.
You can follow the rest of the blog tour here: