Remember Me 2: The Return
Published Sep 1994
Shari Cooper is back, and this time she's found a body to help her get around the physical plane. Luckily, she's inhabiting a foxy 18-year-old Latina, as opposed to, say, an average person of non-remarkable attractiveness and older than late teens/early twenties. Fate worse than death in teen novels, I tell ya.
First off, this is really more like two books - one is the story blurbed on the back of the book; the other is more like a Spiritual Guidance Handbook. Both are appealing, and they fit together quite swimmingly.
The story in Remember Me 2 continues on from the first book (duh) placing Shari Cooper's ghost into the newly vacated body of an ethnic girl from the wrong side of the tracks. All stereotypes aside, I'm pretty stoked that we get to have a protagonist who isn't white; they're kind of rare, at least in the books I'm coming across. And can I just say, Jean Rodrigues was pretty badass, at least before she vacated her Earthly vessel. Smoking weed, having sex, partying with her lesbian best friend - I'm actually pretty impressed. Shari's takeover definitely wussified Jean. I mean, it all worked out for the better, but still... Jean seemed like a pretty cool character, in and of herself.
I also noticed that they didn't really get into the evil opposing force mentioned in the back blurb, but there is clearly a third book, so it's common sense that it's coming (it's coming, it's coming). Kind of like George Washington:
If Chris Hansen from 'To Catch a Predator' and the Alien from 'Alien' got together and ate some MDMA, they would give birth to the acid blotter baby that is Shari Cooper's sex fantasy in heaven. It cracks me up every time.
Anyways, Shari's in heaven (let me call it that for simplicity's sake) and in the presence of the Rishi, a fully enlightened being who explains the basic principals of living the good life: we are all connected, be kind to others, and each life is just another lesson in becoming divine. Shari asks questions, the Rishi answers. I love that about Christopher Pike; he sneaks really important stuff into packages disguised as pulpy teen escapism. Pike books in general helped to shape who I became as an adult, and now there's a whole new generation reading and experiencing the same thing. Score one for humanity!
While heart-wrenching and thought-provoking, this whole book seemed almost like an interlude to set everyone up for the final epic battle of Good vs. Evil. And I'm ready to rumble! For good, I mean. Obviously not for evil. Or a contract with TapOut and cauliflower ears, like in the MMA. Only for good.