Let me start this review by saying, what you think you know about this book is probably wrong. I read the blurb, saw the cool cover and was all happy because it’s the second new Elizabeth Scott book this year and I like Elizabeth Scott. Her books are usually contemporary and cute and involve guys I wish were real. So when I started reading this book, I thought it would be similar to her others. But then the more I read, the more I realized this was completely different from her other stuff. And it was absolutely brilliant.
Ava is welcomed home from the hospital by a doting mother, lively friends, and a crush finally beginning to show interest. There’s only one problem: Ava can’t remember any of them – and can’t shake the eerie feeling that she’s not who they say she is.
Ava struggles to break through her amnesiac haze as she goes through the motions of high-school life, but the memories that surface take place in a very different world, where Ava and familiar-faced friends are under constant scrutiny and no one can be trusted. Ava doesn’t know what to make of these visions, or of the boy who is at the center of them all, until he reappears in her life and offers answers . . . but only in exchange for her trust.
Unfortunately for you, dear reader, I cannot completely reveal why this book is brilliant. I will say that the thing I’ve been wanting more in YA is in this book. It was a surprise (a very welcome surprise) that you have to work out with the narrator and when I figured it out, I frakkin’ celebrated. I want more books like this. (Please, please, authors, write more books like this.)
Okay, let me tell you what I can. Ava is the narrator. She wakes up and knows absolutely nothing. She doesn’t know who she is, where she is, or what is happening around her. It reminded me, in a way, of The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson, which is also a brilliant book with a mystery behind the narrator’s amnesia. The more Ava interacts with the people and places around her, the more she remembers… a different place, which is where the mystery really kicks in. What’s caused Ava’s amnesia? What’s real? Who are these people Ava sees in her visions/memories/episodes and why do they look so familiar?
From the beginning I was spinning theories of what I thought was going on. Most of them came from TV or books I’ve read, but nothing I thought of completely fit the situation, which is great. I love not being able to figure out what’s happening until the end, or near the end as the case may be.
The part I couldn’t get to fit until the end was the boy Ava sees the most in her visions. He was an anomaly who played a large role. I loved everything about him. At first you have no idea who he is or how he connects to Ava, but after a while, it doesn’t matter.His relationship to Ava is the central point to this book and what pushed it over the edge from brilliant to I-will-tell-everyone-about-this-book brilliant.
I will warn you, though, that Elizabeth does not give you all the answers. I still have questions about the ending and what really happened and how it happened and what happens next and OMG SHE NEEDS TO WRITE A SEQUEL. *takes a deep breathe* I’m better now. But seriously, Elizabeth Scott, you need to write a sequel, or a short continuation. Something, anything. Please.
Yes, it’s that good. And yes, I recommend it to everyone. I don’t care if you’ve read her books before and they ‘weren’t for you’. I don’t care if you don’t like mysteries or books where the main character can’t remember anything. Whatever excuse you have, I don’t care. You’re reading this book. The day it’s released. Add it to your to-be-read lists, mark September 15th down on your calendar, and set a reminder alarm to visit your local bookstore because this is a great book and you should read it. And once you’ve read it, you can join me in stalking Elizabeth Scott and constantly asking her to please, please, if you love us at all please, write a sequel.
If I get an ARC of As I Wake at Comic-Con, I will definitely have a giveaway as I want as many people as possible to read this book. I’m fairly certain it will be there, so check back often next week and the week after. Until then, you can read her other books, or start stalking her now to see if you can get your own copy of As I Wake before it’s released.
As I Wake will be released on September 15th from Dutton Juvenile, an imprint of Penguin.