Monday, September 17, 2012

Wake Me Up When It's Over

My most recent read is from one of my new 
favorite authors, Amanda Hocking, author of the best selling Trylle Trilogy and other self published novels.  She is, in my opinion, one of the best up and coming YA novelist out there.  With that being said, I was obviously really geeked out when I heard she would be releasing the first in a new trilogy in August.  I purchased it the day it came out but had to wait (oh, the agony!) to read it because I was in the middle of another series.  

The newest release is called Wake and is the first in what is being called the Watersong Series.  The cover art alone is fantastic, as is the cool videos  that Hocking likes to have produced for her novels.  After reading the Trylle Trilogy, along with the My Blood Approves series, and The Hollows books by Hocking, I was exceedingly excited for this release.  Maybe I put it up too high on a pedestal.  Unfortunately, it just didn't grab me like her other novels have.

Wake is basically the story of two sisters, 
Harper and Gemma.  Gemma is a phenomenal swimmer who both swims for her school's team and takes night swims alone in the Maryland bay area where she lives.  Suddenly there are stories of other teens that leave to meet with friends and never return.  Then, there is a group of new group of girls in town.  The new girls are beautiful, beyond what most girls that age look like.  They seem different too, but nobody can quite figure out why.  Gemma even thinks there's something mysterious about them but can't quite put her finger on it.

Gemma falls for the boys next door, literally.  
Alex has been Harper's friend growing up but now, the summer before leaving for college, he finds he's attracted to Gemma.  Gemma in turn is flattered and finds herself attracted to Alex.  A budding romance ensues.  On the other side, Harper is so transparent with her "dislike" of the local boat boarder, Daniel.  She's run into him on several occasions and immediately puts up a wall, but it's so obvious that she likes him.  Can you say lame?

Gemma is soon drawn into the new girls' circle and suddenly she finds herself as even a stronger, faster swimmer and able to heal quicker than imaginable.  She can stay under water longer than ever before.  She's even found a couple of greenish iridescent scales in her house.  What's going on?  Well, *SPOILER ALERT* it's not too hard to figure out that Gemma has been turned into the same thing the other girls are:  Sirens.  Hocking makes a clear distinction between sirens and mermaids here though, and I'm not quite sure why, maybe only to make the reader understand that sirens are quite a bit more ruthless and uncaring than a mermaid might be.  We learn about the Greek curse put on sirens and how they will never have love.

What will Gemma do when she finds out that a mortal man, a man like Alex, can never love her?  How will Harper figure this all out and save her sister?  And what the heck is Daniel going to do to help Helper?  Well, that's what she leaves us wondering at the end of Wake.  

I went into this as a huge Hocking fan and I think for that reason I had very high expectations.  I felt a bit let down though.  I mean, as a story it's solid and I'm sure there are millions who will love it.  I just expected more.  I'm not sure if the let down is in the actual writing itself or if because it's not a self published novel, she had to change it so much that it's not even the same story she started with. That happens once an editor gets a hold of your work sometimes.  So I wonder Amanda Hocking, what happened?  The characters weren't developed, the story was rather short, and I was just left at the end thinking, "It's done?"  As a reader, I HATE feeling that way.  

Clearly it leaves the opening for the follow 
up novel, due out in November and titled, Lullaby, but still, it wasn't just like a normal cliffhanger.  I felt cheated a bit by the ending.  I literally turned the page and wondered where the rest was because it didn't seem like a natural stopping point to me.  Don't get me wrong, I will read the next one and the one after that too.  I can't just not finish a series unless I truly hated the first book, which I honestly didn't hate this.  In fact, I want to love it so badly but I just can't...and that makes me  mad!

Well, if you like stories about mythical creatures and teenage drama, then you might like this.  It's a nice change of pace from the typical vampires and werewolves that have become so increasingly popular, so it does have that going for it.  Who knows, maybe as the next two books come out to complete the trilogy, I'll fall in love with it as a completed work.  I can only hope so.

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