Friday, December 2, 2011

Book Review - Wake

Title: Wake

Author: Lisa McMann

Synopsis from Goodreads: For seventeen-year-old Janie, getting sucked into other people's dreams is getting old. Especially the falling dreams, the naked-but-nobody-notices dreams, and the sex-crazed dreams. Janie's seen enough fantasy booty to last her a lifetime.

She can't tell anybody about what she does they'd never believe her, or worse, they'd think she's a freak. So Janie lives on the fringe, cursed with an ability she doesn't want and can’t control.

Then she falls into a gruesome nightmare, one that chills her to the bone. For the first time, Janie is more than a witness to someone else's twisted psyche. She is a participant.

My Review: There is plenty of amazing stuff to be said about this book, and some not so great. Lets start with the positive.

I loved that the book starts with the reader being thrown into a dream sequence. It helps us to experience what Janie goes through, how incredibly sudden and unexpected it is for her to be pulled out of what she's doing and sucked into a world she'd rather avoid. Very gripping.

I also really enjoyed the variety of dreams that were presented. Some of them were a bit more...sexual in nature...but the book is about teenagers and hey, teenagers have hormones that get let out while they sleep. The dreams weren't very detailed and Janie usually has the ability to pull out of dreams, which she always tried to do with the sexy ones because they made her uncomfortable. They really weren't a problem for me.

I liked Janie as a character. She is strong and assertive, though frustrating at times when it comes to Cabel. But, again, teenagers can be weird, especially when it comes to boys, so I can't hold that against her too much. She has a difficult life, forced to grow up faster than most because of a mother is drunk all the time and a father she's never met. I think she shows young adults what it means to be strong.

The way the book is presented is fascinating. It can feel choppy, but in an intentional way. I really enjoyed how it was presented.

Now, on to the bad. I hated, hated, how much language this book has. I realize that the author was trying to show what kind of a world Janie comes from, but I don't need to read the 'f' word at least thirty times for that point to come across. I got a pretty clear picture of her world without the language, thank you very much. I honestly wouldn't want my daughters to read this until they're at least sixteen...preferably older...due to the language. Teenagers get exposed to enough language on a daily basis, they don't need it in their literature too.

The other thing that frustrated me was that we have this strong main character, who has a major weakness, her use of alcohol. She sees what it does to her mom, and yet she partakes in it too? Just doesn't make sense to me. Janie's better than that.

Overall, I enjoyed this book. I just think it may need to have a more mature audience.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars