Thursday, 4 July 2013

I, Reader: WAKE by Lisa McMann

This month's I, Reader focuses on a book I first read a couple of years ago, but I found myself re-reading it recently.

*Remember to leave a comment for your chance to win a copy - details at the bottom of this post. GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.

WAKE is a brilliant book. The language is somehow sparse and lyrical at the same time, and having read a subsequent 3 novels by Lisa McMann, I can say that she is one author whose novels are automatically on my must-buy list, without even reading the back cover copy.

Speaking of which, here's the back cover copy for WAKE:

Seventeen-year-old Janie is tired of being sucked into other people's dreams, especially the falling dreams and the standing-in-front-of-the-class-naked ones. Or the chilling nightmares like when she's in a strange a dirty kitchen...and a sinister monster edges ever closer.  
But now, for the first time, Janie is not just a witness but a participant...she's outside in the dark, alone, behind a shed, listening to muffled voices, hoping that somebody's nightmare isn't about to explode through the walls, or from the bushes...

What made this book stand out?

For starters, if you're looking for pointers on how to write a book with excellent, seat-of-your-pants pacing, you must read this novel. The plot packs in mystery and action and romance - all in just over 200 pages, and it's done so cleverly that it doesn't feel like a short novel, nor does it feel rushed. It's told in short, punchy scenes, sometimes reading like a screenplay, almost, and it's so stark and consuming that I just couldn't tear my eyes from the page.

I really, really loved Janie and Cabel, her love interest. They're both dealing with very complicated lives, both very much alone and without parental support, and dealing with some pretty heavyweight responsibilities. But they're still quirky and fun and cute together, and despite some pretty dark themes in this novel, it doesn't feel dark. Again with the cleverness.

Finally, I think there was something Dahl-esque about the concept of influencing dreams (*ahem* BFG) which drew me in immediately...then Lisa McMann gave the idea a wicked twist and hijacked my brain. So.

This is one of those rare books that I'll read over and over again.


Want to win a copy of WAKE by Lisa McMann? Just leave a comment by 8pm GMT on Sunday, 7th July (including a way for me to contact you - twitter, email etc.) and I'll pick one winner at random. Open internationally. **GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED. THANKS TO ALL WHO ENTERED!**


  1. Sounds great! Thanks for the giveaway! @ErinFletcher11

  2. Oooh, I like the sound of it. :D

  3. That sounds like a really interesting read. You already know how to get hold of me ;-)

  4. Oh, this book has been on my miles-long TBR list for a while now. Maybe it's time to move it closer to the top of the list! :) @vbartles


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