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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Book Review: Wake Unto Me by Lisa Cach

Wake Unto Me


*Reading level: Young Adult 
*Paperback: 304 pages 
*Publisher: Speak; Original edition (March 31, 2011)

Caitlin Monahan knows she belongs somewhere else. It's what her dead mother's note suggested, and it's what her recurring nightmares allude to.

Desperate to flee these terrifying dreams--and her small town--she accepts a spot at a boarding school in France. Only, when she arrives, her nightmares get worse.

But then there are her amazing dreams, so vivid and so real, with visits from an alluring, mysterious, and gorgeous Italian boy from the 1500s.

Caitlyn knows they are soul mates, but how can she be in love with someone who exists only in her dreams?

Then, as her reality and dream world collide, Caitlyn searches for the real reason why she was brought to this school. And what she discovers will change her life forever.

From the Back Cover

I see him in my dreams, this mysterious boy.
He comes from
a different time,
a different place,
a different reality.

But there is something that connects us.
We are supposed to be together--bound by the heart of another.
But that's not possible... or is it?

Some girls have all the luck. High school would've been so much more interesting if I could've gone to a place like Chateau de la Fortune! 

Wake Unto Me transported me into Caitlin Monahan’s world. It was a place where history and the paranormal came to life-complete with mysteries yet to be unlocked, romantic interludes with debonair ghosts and a plot filled with more twists and turns than the halls of the French castle itself.

To be honest, I was really leery about reading the book at first—so many YA paranormal books lately have been way too heavy on the instantaneous love connection thing. It's to the point where it’s become almost comical (at least for me).  When I picked up this book, I was nervous. It seemed ripe for the signature YA paranormal formula ( Awkward girl + godlike supernatural boy = Tru Luv 4-EVA)  But thankfully, Wake Unto Me had so much more to offer than most YA paranormals I've read lately. With a rich, exciting plot and great conflict, everything seemed to meld together with a heaping good dollop of paranormal romance as the cherry on top. As for the romance itself, I actually found Caitlin's relationship with Raphael pretty darn alluring—it was all done with just the right amount of sizzling tension and definitely reeled me in right from the start.

But my favorite aspect of Wake Unto Me were the bits of historical intrigue interwoven throughout the narrative. This actually was what kept me on my toes more than I had anticipated and I was constantly surprised as each new clue unfolded along the way.  Another thing that stood out to me was how much time the author must have spent working on the intricacies of her plot with all the clues-within-clues. All in all, Lisa Cach's efforts really showed with both the quality of the writing and her memorable cast of vibrant, quirky characters.  The French boarding school setting itself was vital to a book like this and it added so much— Chateau de la Fortune was an eerie, imposing boarding school with its gothic architecture and colorful medieval history. Even the people running the school seemed to somehow be setting the stage and adding to the general ambiance of the book.  

Needless to say I adored this book. I was immediately drawn in by the idea of Caitlin traveling to a strange castle and getting more than she bargained for with ghosts, eerie dreams and long-buried secrets.  How can you not be interested in a novel where treasure had been hunted since the Crusades and where ghosts are said to haunt the grounds?More please!  Wake Unto Me exceeded my expectations and thoroughly entertained me. In fact, I suffered a major book hang-over from my subsequent lack of sleep the next day at work. But you know what? It was well worth it.  

Be sure and visit the Teen Book Scene for more Wake Unto Me tour stops. Tomorrow Lisa will be guest posting here at The Book Butterfly, where she will share photos of the real places that inspired her writing. Be sure and check it out!

Lisa Cach
Lisa Cach has authored a whole genre of books including books on paranormal works, chick literature, romantic erotica, and young adult. The breadth of her work continues to expand as she grows as a novelist. 

Official Website 


Jessica said...

Great review! Reading this one now and glad to hear that it was a good read! I'm liking it so far, but not much has happened yet, then again I'm not too far into it either. :)

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Sounds splendid and so up my alley :)