Saturday, December 4, 2010

Review of Awaken by Katie Kacvinsky

I love dystopias, but more so, I love dyspotias that are an imaginable and possible future. Awaken, set in an uber-digital world, is a possibility for us. That's what made me want to read this book.

Maddie's another victim to the digital age, where everything's done by computer - schooling, socialising, dating. Her father's the man who fronted the initial idea, and her mother's one of the few people wistful for the days of paper books and non-plastic trees.

She's content with digital life. But then she meets Justin, who tries to teach her how people are supposed to live - together, face-to-face, and without a computer screen as a buffer between themselves and the real world.

The premise of Awaken, I thought, was good. It's realistic, and quite possibly where we're heading. To an extent, we're already there, I realised after it occurred to me that my reading Awaken on an eReader was ironic.

I also liked the writing style. The interludes featuring pages from Maddie's journal, where she wrote as if having a conversation with the reader, made the book feel more personal. I felt like I could connect with her, as she struggled to decide between the life she's always known and the one Justin was showing her.

The romance between Justin and Maddie was believable. It was built up gradually and was at first one-sided, realistic. The characters also had a lot of chemistry, which I don't find often in books that I read.

My sole problem with Awaken was the ending. It came together too easily and without too much effort from the main characters. I like protagonists who have to work for their happy ending.

Overall, I found Awaken to be a commendable debut. I look forward to Katie Kacvinsky's future novels, and rate Awaken 3 out of 5.


Nic @ Irresistible Reads said...

Great review. I have this waiting to be read. It sounds like such an interesting story line and kind of scary that the future you could go that way!

Cass (Words on Paper) said...

Going through NetGalley ay? Nice review there. Can't wait to read this one myself. Too bad about the ending though.

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