Wake introduces the character of Janie Hannagan, who gets pulled into other peoples' dreams if she is near them. It all starts when she is eight and she gets drawn into the dream of a business man while taking the train to visit her grandmother. Janie doesn't have it easy in any way. She lives on the wrong side of town, gets picked on for it, her mom is an alcoholic and to top it all off she has to avoid sleeping people at all costs because she'll get sucked into their dreams and nightmares. But things get even stranger for Janie when she begins to notice Cabel Strumheller. She wonders who he really is and why he sometimes does nice things for her. The weirdness continues when she's pulled into a crazy nightmare while driving home and she can't target the dreamer until she's sucked into the dream again at school. Meanwhile, Cabel is changing and he's almost like two different people in one. The Cabel she sees and the Cabel that the popular kids see. Which one is real? Are there others like Janie out there or is she the only freak?
I really enjoyed this book because it was a refreshing departure from the other books that I have been reading lately. The writing style is different and the subject matter is really original. It is by no means a long book but it is a great read for many reasons. It makes you think about the social issues facing teens and how they affect the adults they will become. It makes you wonder how dreams work and why they reflect our deepest fears that we may not even realize that we have. Janie is a great role model for other teen girls because she is so strong and resilient. She is not perfect and she makes mistakes but overall she is the real adult in her home and she works to rise above the situation that her mother placed her in. This book is definitely for older teen readers and above as there are swear words, drug use mentions, alcohol abuse, and some sexual shenanigans. If you haven't read the Dream Catcher series, please give them a try! You can find out more about the books and author Lisa McMann on her website or on Twitter!
Wake gets 4 Fairies for a unique story and wonderful characters.