Reading level: upper MG or YA
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (August 7, 2012)
Source: library book
Fall under the spell of Wake—the first book in an achingly beautiful new series by celebrated author Amanda Hocking—and lose yourself to the Watersong.
Gorgeous. Fearless. Dangerous. They're the kind of girls you envy; the kind of girls you want to hate. Strangers in town for the summer, Penn, Lexi and Thea have caught everyone's attention—but it’s Gemma who’s attracted theirs. She’s the one they’ve chosen to be part of their group.
Gemma seems to have it all—she’s carefree, pretty, and falling in love with Alex, the boy next door. He’s always been just a friend, but this summer they’ve taken their relationship to the next level, and now there’s no going back. Then one night, Gemma’s ordinary life changes forever. She’s taking a late night swim under the stars when she finds Penn, Lexi and Thea partying on the cove. They invite her to join them, and the next morning she wakes up on the beach feeling groggy and sick, knowing something is different.
Suddenly Gemma is stronger, faster, and more beautiful than ever. But her new powers come with a terrifying price. And as she uncovers the truth, she’s is forced to choose between staying with those she loves—or entering a new world brimming with dark hungers and unimaginable secrets.
I just love mermaid stories. Make it a story about killer mermaids and I'm even more entranced. I had a lot of fun reading Wake by Amanda Hocking.
While the plot didn't amaze me, I was intrigued. I hate to say this, but there is only so much you can do with a story about sirens. It was everything I expected it to be, and very little more. Now, don't take that the wrong way. I did enjoy it; it just didn't break the mold.
Gemma was a decent character. She was strong and beautiful-- perfect bait for a gang of deadly sirens. I know the majority of the story focused on Gemma and her plight, but I was really more interested in Daniel. He was mysterious and fun. He had this aura of bad-boy swirling around him that had me hooked from the beginning. Alex was that "boy next door" kind of character, which worked well with being Gemma's love interest. Gemma's sister was also decent as far as foils go. Overall, the characters were all balanced out and did a nice job of supporting one another-- but I'm still team Daniel.
What review of a book about mermaids would be complete without mentioning the main characters? These sirens were not all singing crabs and sunshine. These girls were hard-core. Penn is certainly the most vicious of the three. Talia came across as aloof and uninterested. I'm sure there will be more to that in future books. What I did enjoy about this book is that the focus really wasn't on sparkling mermaid tails. Yes, it was mentioned a few times, but not as much as you would think. There was certainly an underlying mystery that was more prevalent to the plot. The mythology that was subtly introduced was also used in a very clever way. I am curious to see how Gemma and the other unravel that mystery in future books.
Overall, Wake was a fun read. It was quick and had enough romance to make it a page turner. (Very clean romance by the way.) I feel like this was a nice introduction to the upcoming books, which will probably have more plot twists in store.