5 Apr 2014

REVIEW: When We Wake by Karen Healey

Title: When We Wake (When We Wake #1)
Author: Karen Healey
Genre: Young Adult. Dystopia.
Publication Date: March 5th 2013
Publisher: Little Brown Books For Young Readers
Format: Paperback
Pages: 304
Rating: 4/5

Sixteen-year-old Tegan is just like every other girl living in 2027—she's happiest when playing the guitar, she's falling in love for the first time, and she's joining her friends to protest the wrongs of the world: environmental collapse, social discrimination, and political injustice.

But on what should have been the best day of Tegan's life, she dies—and wakes up a hundred years later, locked in a government facility with no idea what happened.

The future isn't all she had hoped it would be, and when appalling secrets come to light, Tegan must make a choice: Does she keep her head down and survive, or fight for a better world?

Award-winning author Karen Healey has created a haunting, cautionary tale of an inspiring protagonist living in a not-so-distant future that could easily be our own.

I found this book randomly when I was looking through my library’s catalogue- the cover definitely drew me in first. As usual, I looked up the book quickly on Goodreads and it looked good- I can’t pass up a Sci Fi/Dystopia/Romance, and then I found out it was set in Melbourne. For those of you who might not know, I’m from Melbourne so thought of a Dystopian being set here sounded amazing. It was.

This is the first YA book I’ve ever read set in my city, so I’d never had the chance to experience something like this before. I knew all the streets and the places that were mentioned in the book and I could picture what they looked like now and imagine how they might look in the book. This really helped me enjoy the book, there was just this sense of familiarity that I just really don’t have with other books.

When I was looking on Goodreads the first time, I saw a couple of reviews likening it to Across the Universe by Beth Revis in the sense that both books involve cryogenically freezing people.  Now, I love Across the Universe, probably even more than I should but When We Wake takes the story down a whole other path. I loved where the story went- other than AtU, I don’t think I’ve read anything else with cryogenics so it was interesting to see a different take on it. The story has little snippets from the main character, Tegan, as she sort of looks back on the events. I really like when this is down in books, and this particular style reminded me of this particular moment in Torchwood: Children of Earth. It’s probably not going to make sense to those of you who haven’t watched the show, but for those of you who have- there’s a moment where Gwen is hiding with Rhys and a bunch of children and she is recording a message- this reminded me of that moment.

I really enjoyed this- it was an incredibly fast read because it’s quite fast-paced and I know for the last 50 pages or so, I literally could not look away from the book. Definitely recommend!