The Map of Lost Memories by Kim Fay- a review
About the book from the author’s WEBSITE
Suspense and secrets are woven together in this engrossing fiction debut by Kim Fay. The Map of Lost Memories takes readers on a daring expedition to a remote land, where the search for an elusive treasure becomes a journey into the darkest recesses of the mind and heart.
In 1925, the international treasure-hunting scene is a man’s world, and no woman knows this better than Irene Blum, who is passed over for the coveted curator position at Seattle’s renownedBrooke Museum. But she is not ready to accept defeat. Skilled at acquiring priceless, often illicitly trafficked artifacts, Irene is given a rare map believed to lead to a set of copper scrolls that chronicle the lost history of Cambodia’s ancient Khmer civilization. Such a find would not only restore her reputation, it would be the greatest archaeological discovery of the century.
As Irene travels from Seattle to Shanghai to the Cambodian jungles, she will encounter several equally determined companions, including a communist temple robber and a dashing nightclub owner with a complicated past. As she and her fellow adventurers sweep across borders and make startling discoveries, their quest becomes increasingly dangerous. Everyone who comes to this part of the world “has something to hide,” Irene is told—and she learns just how true this is. What she and her accomplices bring to light will do more than change history. It will ultimately solve the mysteries of their own lives.
I have to admit that I’ve always been a bit of an Indochina junkie, so, when I was approached about reviewing this book, I was a little leery. But, I am very thankful that I took on the task. Kim Fay knocked it out of the park with this one. I also have to admit that I am not a fan of a lot of descriptions of one’s surroundings, but this one was so well written, that I literally could feel the balmy, humid climate. I could hear the pounding rain. I could hear the insects in the jungle and see the streets of 1925 Shanghai and Saigon. I could smell the incense and the smoke from their hand-rolled cigarettes. I was mesmerized with the temples and the different statues that stood guard in Cambodia.
The characters are so well written that you can’t wait to see what happens next. There are so many twists in this book. Irene is very determined and very stubborn. And to say this lady has more courage than anyone else in the book is an understatement. She constantly surprised me with the depth of her courage and conviction to see her task through to completion. And, in my opinion, she surprised herself. Her parents have both died, her mother when she was a child, and her father more recently. Mr. Simms, a family friend, has been her father figure, benefactor and biggest champion, plays such an integral part in Irene’s growth throughout this story. There are several supporting characters that have a lot of depth as well. Simone, the Communist temple robber, gives new meaning to dysfunctional. Louis, Simone’s first love, stays true to his cause. And, then there’s Marc, the dashing nightclub owner. Would love to tell you his back story, but that would give away one of the surprises within the story.
There is murder, mystery, a little political intrigue, a little romance and a great adventure. For me it is a little Indiana Jones in respect to adventure and a little Out of Africa in respect to the strength of the lead female character. I can’t express in words how well written this book is. You can tell that it was definitely a labor of love for Fay. I can only hope that she doesn’t stop here. I look forward to her next adventure. And hope that she doesn’t make me wait too long. Very well done Ms. Fay, very well done.
LINKS TO ORDER: Amazon / Barnes and Noble / The Book Depository / KOBO
Copy supplied by author.
Reviewed by Vickie