Saturday, September 11, 2010

Janie does it in her sleep in WAKE by Lisa McMann

Like any good addict, I have crazy dreams.  I fly, I swim, I bounce around from place to place.  I was a little disappointed with Inception and how normal the dreams were.

In Wake by Lisa McMann, Janie is sucked into people's dreams.  I loved the lyrical style of the book, especially the beginning when we slip in and out of people's dreams with Janie.  Our dreams can be very intimate and revealing, but McMann didn't hold back in describing the sleeping images flashing through teenagers' heads.

I also enjoyed the love story.  Cabel is my new literary crush, who knew scars could be so sexy?

I really enjoyed the first half of the book.  But the second half started becoming too unbelievable for me.


I just didn't buy that Cabel was an undercover teenage cop.  The way that was handled came across as very unbelievable to me.  Sure, I can believe a girl can slip into someone's dreams and control them, but I can't believe law enforcement would behave that way.

But the well written dream sequences and the realistic romance were enough for me to enjoy Wake.

The sequel, Fade, on the other hand is a different story.  As a high school teacher, I can be very picky about the way high school is portrayed in YA.  High schools are already dramatic conflict-flled places, we don't need over-the-top and outlandish crimes to be committed in order for teenagers to experience conflict and feel unsafe.

I thought Fade was completely unrealistic.  I get it, it's a fantasy, but if the story is based in the real-world, I need something real in that world to hold on to.

There are teachers who do horrible things.  We didn't need the over-the-top, sensationalized villainy in order for Janie to be in danger.  I think the story would've been scarier if the high school setting was more realistic.

I also didn't buy the conflict between Cabel and Janie.  It wasn't consistent with Cabel's character and teenagers aren't usually that cognizant of their feelings and why they behave the way they do.

I liked Wake, but was disappointed with Fade.  I won't be reading Gone unless someone convinces me it has at least one foot in reality.


  1. I read Wake. It was my first story that I read in a long time that was in present tense. I enjoyed it, even with the sort of unrealistic angle of a guy doing undercover work in a high school. Kind of reminded me of 21 Jump Street. Loved that show. Yeah, they were all older and real cops, but Cabel was kind of older too, wasn't he? Or am I remembering wrong?

    Haven't read the sequels and not really sure if I care to. It just didn't hit me hard enough that I thought I had to go out and get the next one. Thanks for your thoughts. :)