Read Wake by Abria Mattina Online


Eighteen isn’t too young to run your life into the ground, but it’s not too old to fix it, either. The desire for change drives Willa Kirk from St. John’s, Newfoundland back to her hometown of Smiths Falls, Ontario, away from her mistakes and the place where her sister died. She’s looking for a place to settle and rebuild, but Jem Harper just wants to get out of town, backEighteen isn’t too young to run your life into the ground, but it’s not too old to fix it, either. The desire for change drives Willa Kirk from St. John’s, Newfoundland back to her hometown of Smiths Falls, Ontario, away from her mistakes and the place where her sister died. She’s looking for a place to settle and rebuild, but Jem Harper just wants to get out of town, back to the life he knew before cancer. By letting the tragedies in their lives define them, they are both dying a little more every day. Welcome to the wake....

Title : Wake
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 12698497
Format Type : Kindle Edition
Number of Pages : 727 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Wake Reviews

  • Amber Rose
    2019-01-25 08:53

    I'm not invisible. I have desires. I want to be touched and held and told that I'm worth something. I am not pitiful. I am better than you can imagine. I have talents. I have successes and failures. I love my life. I sometimes feel dissatisfied with the world. I come from a place of love, not death. I am special. I matter. I can be the most interesting person in the room. I can blend in and that's okay. I'm somebody. I'm a nobody. I feel deeply and I want to be allowed to show it. I don't want to be judged. I can be judgmental. When you give me platitudes and you belittle my feelings. I'm brave. I'm scared. I'm wandering. I have plans. I will be the best me I can be. I am not who I think I am. I am not who you think I am; I am who I think you think I am, so think well of me, please.First let me say before anyone goes out and buys Wake that you please be very patient with this one. It's a very, very long book. But it's an absolutely beautiful read. Jem is a eighteen year old going through cancer remission. Jem got cancer a week after he moved to a new town and school. Jem has no friends and everyone is standoffish towards him because he is the cancer boy afraid he is going to drop at any moment. Jem is tried, and not the perfect, handsome, out going kid he once was. It's an every day struggle with the pain plus to make it to school and seat there lonely. Besides his sweet little sister Elise is there for him. I adored his sister and all the milk shakes that she makes him and her Harry Potter obsessions."You worry so much for such a young man," she says. You always were like that; and old soul, I guess." Then he meets Willa his Social Studies partner. Willa also a back ground with dealing with cancer. Her sister died of cancer. She is an angry, flat out blunt, depressed girl. But Willa has her own secrets. Willa is struggling with not going back to her dark past."You're a ginger? "Kirk" "Oh you poor soulless bastard." The bickering back and forth between Jem and Willa is hilarious. Willa is not scared to talk or touch Jem, she treats him like an actual person. I love how Willa takes great care of Jem, she makes him wonderful and sounds delicious soups that he can eat. Willa treats Jem too good.You can't love someone if you don't really know them. And if you can't love them at their darkest just can't love them, period.It's heart wrenching. I loved the different POV's that I got, I love how at that moment of time I get the feelings from other family members. Jem has a amazing family they are all full of heart.Even though this book is long as hell I am glad I read it, but you get to see the day in and day out of what all these characters go through. It makes it worth it so much more. Great job Abria Mattina

  • Katie(babs)
    2019-01-28 11:47

    Wake by Abria Mattina was a free book offered for the Kindle, which I grabbed since I’m always interested in reading more self published books, especially young adult. Wake has received positive reviews for the most part, and this is a heavily, emotional young adult novel that's written more an adult audience than a teen one. There’s a great deal of adult language, aka cursing, no fade to black love scenes and a lot of talk about dying, euthanasia and death. Wake has a great deal to recommend for it but there are many cons I have, including a big, big issue that unfortunately ruined my reading experience when I found out where this story evolved from. Wake has many POVs, here, but starts out with the POVs from the two main characters. Jem, the male protagonist is recovering from cancer and is still dealing with the side effects of his illness. His family is very supportive of him, including his younger sister Elise who is very protective of Jem and makes him homemade milkshakes, the only thing he can keep down. Because Jem missed too many days of school because of his cancer, he has stayed back a year. He’s not thrilled about going back to school because he’s still very sick. He can’t eat correctly, lost a great deal of weight that makes him look skeletal and is bald. He feels like a freak and everyone treats him with kid gloves. He just wants to be a normal teenage boy again but his body stops him for doing so. During his Social Studies class, Jem is partnered up with a new girl, Willa. He and Willa don’t hit it off right away. Jem wants to be left alone but for some reason Willa sneaks into his thoughts and he decides to give her a chance and see if they can be friends. Willa on the other hand isn’t sure what to think of Jem. She’s really not interested in being friends with him or anyone else at her new school. She now lives with her older brother since she can’t live with her parents, especially with her mother who can barely look or talk to her. Willa is hiding a big secret that has to do with the death of her sister who also died from cancer. She seems to understand what Jem is going through and goes out of her way to make him soup like she did with her sister to help him gain weight, including establishing a relationship with him, although she doesn’t want to rely on Jem too much because there’s a possibility his cancer could come back and he could die.Jem starts to fall in love with Willa and wants to break down those emotional walls she has put up around her. Most of the time she drives him crazy and they end up fighting and screaming and not talking to one another for days. But eventually they come back to one another because of the bond they have created. Then Willa takes a chance and tells Jem her dark secret, which causes Jem to lash out at her where she almost falls into a destructive behavior that could destroy not only herself but Jem who feels the only reason he can keep living is because of Willa.Wake does hit you hard. Abria doesn’t hold back any punches, especially with Jem and what he goes through because of his cancer. For the most part, Jem's illness was handled wonderfully and I do wish there were more YA type books with the POV from the primary male character. I adored Jem and everything he stood for. I rooted for him to get better and wanted him to live a full and happy life. I loved Jem’s relationship with his family, but his sister Elisa is unrealistic because she acts much younger than she is. She's a sixteen year old who acts more like a pre-teen or perhaps even younger and she had a very grating personality.I couldn’t stand Willa. The way she acts is a big contradiction most of the time and the twist regarding her sister fell flat for me, as well as the constant fighting, and tension for tension sake between Jem and her was incredibly annoying. At times I felt these two were perfect for one another, but then something would happen and I wanted to smack them and tell them to search elsewhere for satisfaction. Their relationship was a combustible one, but by the end I did believe their HEA, although the ending was too pat and sudden. A big problem I had with Wake was the length. It could have been cut by 100 or 150 pages. Half way through there’s too much head jumping and POVs that threw me out of the story and far too many secondary characters who don’t seem to have any importance as a whole to the story. There were also some actions and scenes that don’t make sense and again don’t bring any importance to the plot or help motivate Jem or Willa. The language and sex is in your face, not watered down, but does have a sense of truthfulness to it. The way Jem obsesses with sex and having sex with Willa is exactly what I would expect from a boy his age. Even though this is considered a young adult novel, again with the situations, language and sex, it fits more of an adult audience. Even though this is about teens, the subject matter is very adult. There’s a lot of cursing and many sexual situations, none fade to black that you usually find in young adult books When it comes to young adult books, IMO, I expect it to be more subtle. But again that's my opinion and a subjective view.I was ready to give Wake a B- grade because I was engaged to a point, but as I was reading I found out a big WTF for me. I had no idea this was former Twilight fan fiction. Because of that I’m lowering this a grade and can’t recommend Wake to readers. Some may think I’m being mean and cruel as a reviewer, but my opinion about publishing fan fiction that has been posted on a fan fiction board, much like E.L. James, among other authors where they make their money off their former fan fiction is very well known and one I don't agree with. If I find out a book I’ve read is former fan fiction that has been published, as is the case of most Twilight fan fiction being published these days, I will lower my grade, and so is the case with Wake.Wake has a lot to recommend for it but needs to be heavily edited and fixed to be a more cohesive story. I can see there being a sequel. As for reading that sequel if it does get written, I won’t be reading it because after reading some excerpts of Dead on my Feet starring Edward and Bella as Jem and Willa, I’ve become sour regarding Wake and will try to find other young adult fiction that isn’t former Twilight fan fiction. Was once Twilight fan fic called Dead on My Feet by Cesca Marie. Can be read here:

  • Tee loves Kyle Jacobson
    2019-02-07 09:47

    First I MUST start this review off by saying I HAVE NEVER read a book that had so many things tie in to one thing. Abria has done a PHENOMENAL job of weaving a story of love,loss and secrets. Where decisions are made and consequences are suffered. I was so emotional reading this book because I had just finished another book that dealt with Cancer and loss.Jem was a very interesting character for me because he was a snarky little thing. He was angry and confused and hurt and scared all in one and hid it well from his family and friends. He is very close to his little sister and they share every thing and she even gives up her room so he can have privacy when he is sick. He is in remission from the cancer but he is sick from all the medicine and very cranky. Then Jem starts school again after thr treatments but his heart just isn't there because he is always tired and sick. But he keeps going to school and it is there that he meets the new girl Willa. Although he finds out she is not new at all because she used to live there but then she moved away and now she is back. They start off with a lot of banter and snarkiness between them because Willa dishes out what he gives her. They have this love hate relationship and go through a lot together.Willa has secrets and she is willing to go to the grave with them because all she wants to do is forget. She moves in with her brother to start a new life and move on from the death of her sister from Cancer. She becomes friends with Jem and treats him like he is not sick. They share a lot in common and they are good for one another. Willa realizes that Jem needs her in so many ways and she is willing to help him.This story was so heart wrenching and so intense that at times I was laughing and crying all in one. This is a must read because it delves into emotions and situations that may arise for so many teens that are sick or who have family members that sre sick. It will take you on an emotional ride and in the end it will leave you breathless.While I was reading this book a song came to mind that reminded me of Jem and Willa. My Love by Sia and here is the link to the video

  • Jude
    2019-01-31 14:03

    Wow, Wake was... wow. Insanely long, but not long. Sometimes books seem to drag on and on and you're just thinking When will this end? even if they are not long you still fell like they're huge. Wake was actually long, but I just wanted more and more and more. Books are small chapters of the characters lives. Wake was many chapters for Willa and Jem and I loved it and I could easily read another book about them.I got to know the characters inside and out completely. Their points of view, their pasts, what haunts them and how they evolve. Which was beautiful. It was not a sad story, not at all; it was tough, but not sad. And the whole ending was great.From the moment I started the book, Jem's voice sucked me into the story and I was addicted. Both Jem and Will had such strong voices and they were so so sofunny! Lots and lots of swearing, but God, I don't think I've ever laughed so much with a book! Especially considering that every single joke here was dark and bittersweet. And no matter how depressing the situation was, there was always some sarcastic bitter joke somewhere. A Fantastic approach to a novel that revolves around a cancer patient.I highly Highly suggest you read Wake. Won't regret it, and you'll be very satisfied. You should do your best to read it slowly, savor each chapter, word and joke. It's so worth it. I LOVED this book. I bow to author Abria Mattina. She wrote and exceptional book, and I'm still blown away by how good it was.Strong characters, fierce novel and a new favorite. Wake is simply Amazing.

  • Steph LJ
    2019-02-13 06:51

    I did not enjoy this book... not at all.The author claims a degree in English Literature, yet consistently breaks the I/me rule. This is one of the easiest and common rules of grammar, and if a published author delivers a work with this mistake I find it unforgivible. Was there even a proof reader or editor involved? It is just unacceptable for I to see this error. (see how annoying that is?)Then there is the problem of the characters and their sad drama. Willa is a damaged smartass living with her not-out-gay brother. Jem is a boy with cancer.We are subjected to these two constantly insulting each other, Jem vomiting in great detail, and Willa "dealing" with the death of her sister. The characters are never really developed, and when we are told that they have feelings for each other I can't help but ask, "Why?" Why do they have such deep feelings? I never got it.The book last forever. Every last detail of each hospital visit is described in painful detail. I get it. The kid is sick. But, I don't need to have the gritty details to feel for him. Pretty much, as a rule, just include one or two vomit scenes per book. I know it happens, but don't need the play by play.In the end I guess they end up happily ever after. The epilogue is set a few months after the end of the book, and I didn't really see the need for it. We are treated to the emotional turmoil of Jem's first haircut. Again, I understand the emotion, but at this point I'm wondering where the therapist is, because these people are NOT handling their grief well.

  • Mary Elizabeth
    2019-01-22 09:48

    I think the reason fan fiction works so well is because we all ready have a relationship with the characters, so while there is a little explanation in the start of fan fiction stories about who is who, we pretty much already have it down. And that was a huge issue with Wake, which used to be Dead on my Feet when it was still a Twilight fan fiction. I loved the story when it was up on ffn, and I thought for sure I would love it as a book. That just wasn't the case really. A lot of that die to the fact that the author pulled it from ffn, changed the names and title, and published. Sure, a few minor details were changed, but Wake and Dead on my Feet are the same exact thing. Not to say I didn't like it the second time around, because I did. The only problem I had was that I was not as invested in Jem (Edward) or Willa (Bella) as I was in the original. In fact, I was confused as to who was who for about the first two or three chapters. It took me a minute to figure out that Jem and Harper are the same person a la Edward Cullen - Jem Harper. The stories plot itself is genius. She takes an ugly plot line and makes it funny, but brutally honest at the same time, and that is something I have always admired about Abria Mattina - she isn't afraid to make us feel uncomfortable. Cancer is scary, and never once did she sugar coat it. Did I say it's almost 800 pages long? Yeah, she cut nothing, which proved to be kind of boring at times, because while the little sister and her crush worked in the fic, it did not work in the book. None of it worked, and Elsie and Kipp's relationship could have been left out completely ... Elsie (Alice) has a big enough role in Wake as it is. Kipp (Jasper) added nothing to the plot, where in the fic it worked because they are Twilight characters. In the end I'm glad I read it again. I wish she would have put a little more effort into making it more original, but it's a story that will stay with me for the rest of my life. The last chapter is different and much better than Dead on my Feet's, and that left me with a good feeling. She closed it up nicely. I will totally rec this to family members and friends who have not read the original fan fiction version, but if you have, don;t bother unless you feel like reading the same thing again ... which you might. It's a fun read. I love their banter.

  • H.Lee
    2019-02-18 13:50

    I was not sure what to expect when I first started reading this book and please do not judge a book by its cover! Many of us do, myself includedand I have found many GREAT books that I would not have really paid much attention to just by the cover. This one included!Willa and Jem have a lot in common, but they share a lot of differences also. They get placed together as project partners in Sociology class and neither are too thrilled about it. I loved their bantering back & forth during their very first conversations. I guess that I should mention that Jem is in remission of Cancer and Willa had lost her sister to cancer. Jem still wallows in pity and hates the fact that people tip toe around him. He quickly learns that Willa will do no such thing and just treats him like she would treat anyone else. He loves it! Willa is still trying to recover from losing her sister, but she holds a major secret that she had never told anyone. She likes Jem, but tries to stay away when he starts to get too clingy.The two go on a rocky path between fighting their differences in opinion and trying to work through each of their demons together as well as individually. There will need to be a lot of forgiveness and a lot of hope for the two to come together and finally be able to live the life they were meant to!My favorite character was Ava, she was very snarky and a wise a$$. I loved every minute with her! She told it just like she saw it. No sugar-coating needed and if you didn’t like it…oh well!There are many serious issues that this book deals with besides love..there is the aspect of cancer, assisted suicide and suicide itself. I really liked the depiction of each of these scenarios and felt that the writer had hit the nail on the head. I would suggest this book for a very mature teen!“I like you,” he insists“I believe you.”“Willa?”“Yeah?”“I think I’m gonna throw up.”Holding his head over the basin while he pukes, I can’t help but think: this is exactly how we first met. Green Jell-O included.

  • Miss Adeo
    2019-02-02 13:51

    ok so the general gist is that this book centres around the two main characters, Willa a troubled girl who from the start has been through a lot but you're not quite sure of what. And Jem who is in a remission from cancer. It deals with themes of loss, guilt, depression and fighting to get your life back after surviving cancer, radiation chemo and all the side effects that come with them. When I first started reading this book I made a few assumptions about how I thought the story would pan out. As I continued reading, the author, through her incredible characters battered down every single one of my predictions. These characters were honest and for once they react to situations much more realistically than I realise I've come to expect in books. The characters have been through so much and with the book being like 700 pages long we are able to slowly find out all the secrets as they do.Jem the male lead was so true to life and I love how unlike most books he doesn't just overcome all of his body issues because his love interest says he looks fine. I'm so tired of someone having long term issues with themselves and literally getting over them in 2 seconds. There was a bit of a role reversal in this book in that Willa was the one with the most experience and also the one more reluctant to fall into a relationship. All the characters, primary and secondary brought something to the table. Jems whole family was awesome but I have to say Elise his little sister was definitely a scene stealer for me. I personally know a few families who have gone/are going through something similar to what Jems is and I was amazed by how true to life this book was. I really liked how the author didn't feel the need to fix all the problems, because in real life some things are fixable while other things people just have to come to terms with things and move on.I didn't quite know what to expect when I read this but I'm glad I did. This book is the result of an author who more than excels in writing honest and larger than life characters. It lets you into the world that millions of families all over the world are going through and it shows that great writing doesn't need massive plot twists to keep the reader hooked.Also I can't lie I originally wanted to read it cos of the EPIC book cover. Didn't even know what genre it was just like **click** to-read! Gosh my good reads to-read button gets some ABUSE

  • ѦѺ™
    2019-02-22 11:40

    We shall draw from the heart of suffering itself the means of inspiration and survival. - Winston Churchillin her desire to start a new life, Willa Kirk goes back to her hometown of Smith Falls, Ontario to live with her older brother Frank. she meets Jem Harper who is on remission from cancer and as their relationship progresses, their lives and of those around them will never be the same. author Abria Mattina's novel is certainly a hefty one and it deals with a lot of subject matter - disease, teenage angst, suicide, sex, family dynamics, friendship, intimacy, homosexuality and deep dark secrets. initially, Willa's and Jem's voices speak alternately. later on in the book, Elise's voice, Jem's sister, is heard. each has a story to tell and through these different points of view, the reader gets a clear picture of what is going on. the language is contemporary and very graphic especially the dialogs between Willa and Jem. the exchanges are raw, heavy and very emotional and affected me in more ways than one particularly Jem's battle with cancer. his struggle reminded me so much of my Mom whom i lost to the Big C a couple of years ago. memories of those times spent in clinics and hospitals with her kept recurring in my mind. although this was not an easy read for me, i have only high praises for this book. it is is well researched, brilliantly written and filled with flesh and blood characters that leap off from its 700 plus pages. do not let that number and the heavy themes daunt you or keep you from grabbing a copy of this must read novel. i assure you that the time spent reading this phenomenal book is worth every letter, word, sentence, paragraph and punctuation mark.Disclosure of Material Connection:a copy was provided by the author. i did not receive any payment in exchange for this review nor was i obligated to write a positive one. all opinions expressed here are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, the book's publisher and publicist or the readers of this review. this disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

  • Joanne Johnston
    2019-02-09 11:42

    The book had my emotions going up and down There are not many books that i finish and then after, feel emotionally exhausted. i can probably count the ones that do, on one, humour, sex, self harm, euthanasia, dying, grieving, drugs 'Wake' not only has a gritty storyline but it is witty, moving and beautifully written. the different perspectives of the same days of the week provide different perspectives of the main characters 'Jem' and 'Willa'. What i love about both characters is that neither of them hold back. from when they first met both Jem and Willa throw abuse at each other back and forth-i loved how this book had a funny side as well as a very serious side. at times though i started to resent the characters only to fall in love with them all over again. what i liked about willa at the beginning was her stubbornness for not caring about what anyone thinks about her, and her recklessness. i liked her snideness and her rudeness. then i began to not like her for all these things as it seemed to cause nothing but hurt for her and jem. what i loved about jem, was his romantic side and his vulnerable side. even though he was so self conscious, he dealt with his illness very bravely, and didn't want to give up. of course feeling sorry for jem was to be expected-especially everything he went through-but at times i wanted to shout at him and tell him to 'man up!' i think he lack of self esteem obviously has a lot to do with his illness and they way people treat him. willa is exactly what jem needed and vice versa. before each other they were a mess. but together (eventually) they cleaned one another up. *Five stars* :-) xxx

  • Monica
    2019-02-18 06:50

    This was such a beautiful story. There were so many topics it touched on. The aftermath of cancer and drug treatments & their effects, suffering through illness, assisted suicide, insecurities, forgiveness, rebirth, spirituality, sexuality and homosexuality, family, love, and life after cancer. This story is told through multiple pov's. Mainly Jem, who has survived cancer and Willa who lost her sister to cancer. There are a few chapters that offer viewpoints of their other siblings as well. The dialogue is fantastic, the snarky attitudes and slick humor was just right. I laughed, I cried, I smiled and I sighed. Truly a remarkable story.

  • Jess Brown
    2019-02-11 13:01

    I adore this book, it's beautifully written. There will be tears, but all is right in the end.

  • Pam Godwin
    2019-02-12 08:08

    This is a stirring story of heart crushing proportions. Two families stricken by cancer. The impossible tragedy of mercy killing. An appreciation for life. Eighteen year old Cancer Boy, Jem, and his Social Studies partner, Willa, are so perfectly developed and well-imagined, their lives just take over and happen to you. It's quite an experience, one that isn't ashamed to wring tears by obvious means. This would be a five star masterpiece if it weren't for the astoundingly tedious chronicle of school, homework, and dinner preparations. At three times the length of an average novel, it needs some serious trimming. By the end, however, the accumulated weight and inertia of the story succeeds to invest Jem and Willa's coming-of-age destiny with significance. The image of the sickly and fragile Jem will linger long after the book is read. Combine that with Willa's courageous narrative and you have a wildly sentimental and beautiful account of surviving cancer. Note: There's not much of the sexy stuff you'd expect for modern YA, but there are a number of explicit sexual situations. Intercourse, as it occurs, is hidden behind the curtain. This is more an emotional drama with romance as the sub-plot.

  • Jovani
    2019-02-21 09:01

    Cancer to you and me is a disease of uncontrollable cell growth. It is the reason we wear pink in October. It's what motivates us to run a marathon in honor of someone who beat it.But to Jem...He IS Cancer. He dreams sleeps, walks, and breathes It. Cancer has stolen his hair, taken over his wardrobe and wasted his social life. With each look of disgust, he dies a little more inside. He no longer recognizes his reflection in the mirror. His family and friends (lack there of) can't bare to look at him, so they stare past him. Willa is a gloved wearing, Emo-chick who doesn't take crap from anyone. Willa is also the only person who looks at Jem and actually sees him. Their relationship is based on hiding and running from the world that doesn't understand. Cancer has left them both for dead, but somehow they find a way to live through each other. Willa however is hiding much more than just her hands, she has a much darker secret that will rock the only solid person in her life...Jem would give anything to go back to the life he had before Cancer. But...was he ever really living?Fantastic, Real, Raw! I loved it!

  • Nicole
    2019-02-01 09:07

    This is such a heart wrenchingly great book. It hits close to home as I have lived through 3 people near and dear to me fight cancer and finding out someone close to my best friend was diagnosed right after I started reading this. I was sucked into this book from the get go. And honestly it made me severely melancholy - just a forewarning to other readers. Even though this is like a young adult / new adult novel the writing was exceptional. You really get hit in the gut with the depth of characters and world that the author has created. Great writing (minor editing issues that I can look over but I know some people are hard pressed on these types of things), amazingly unique plot and a wonderful depth of characters that make you fall in love with them and really feel the bond to them. A must re-read for me.

  • Anne
    2019-02-14 11:07

    I really enjoyed this book - it felt very honest and authentic without sugarcoating the more harrowing details of Jem's and Willa's lives. When I try to describe this book to people, they usually say 'so, it's like "The Fault in Our Stars then"', but I don't actually rate that book very highly. "Wake" may not have the acclaim (or the companion movie) of John Green's novel, nor does it *SPOILER ALERT* go so far in terms of its commitment to a 'sad' ending, but I was moved by this book in a way I never was by Green's.

  • Akanksha❤ Søren♰
    2019-02-08 12:46

    For a 727 page book, the summary is mighty small!!

  • Blue
    2019-02-05 11:52

    I'm stopping at 32%, which is just under 300 pages of this almost 900 page book. Honestly, this is a good book, the writing is actually quite good. But at this point of the book, the 2 main characters are still dancing around each other and we still don't know that much about either of them really. I'm nervous about going further in case something bad happens to one of them. [This is about 1 of them having cancer after all].I may come back to this, I may not. I'm not bored really, just frustrated at the lack of progress after that long reading.

  • Liz at Fictional Candy
    2019-01-23 13:50

    This book was fantastic!!!! Seriously, it was so good, if I could give it more than 5 stars, I definitely would. In fact, I’ve already gotten one friend to purchase a copy for himself, and I am anxiously waiting to hear his thoughts on it. Don’t let the high page count scare you off! It almost scared me off, I’ll admit it. I kept delaying reading this book. Funny how something like that can scare you. BUT I made a huge mistake in waiting. Honestly, I don’t think the cover or the blurb do the contents of this story justice. No, I have no clue how I would change either one lol. I should also note that I powered through this book in one weekend – I couldn’t help it, it was that good. I literally had double vision from eye strain while grocery shopping! And it was totally worth it!Let’s start with the facts about this story. It is about Jem (short for Jeremiah) and Willa, two high school students with more pain in their history than any person should have to deal with. The story alternates between both of their point of views, sometimes both going over the same scene from their own point of view. This worked SO well for this story. It kept it fresh and moving. Right from the beginning of this story I was captured by the whole tone and easy flow. First we have Jem. Jem is in remission from cancer. He is relatively new at his high school, so he doesn’t really have any strong relationships with people there. He does, however, have incredibly strong and powerful relationships with the people within his family. I loved them all, and I couldn’t wait until I could come over to their house and integrate myself into the Harper family. I firmly believe without their love and support Jem would not have survived the diseased that ravaged his young body. Aside from that, Jem is a bit of a snarky pessimist – a new thing for him. But he has just survived something so painful and it has stolen so much from him, you can’t blame him. But even further, he is a deep and caring person. He has a wicked sense of humor and I would totally want to be his friend. “… And before you try any other small talk: yes, I really did move here from Newfoundland; no, you may not borrow my car, homework, or money; black is my favorite color and the Stones feed it to the Beetles. Okay?” -WillaNext, and certainly not least, Willa. Willa has just moved back to Smiths Falls. She is a bit quirky, and cancer has also touched her family. She is no stranger to the pain and fear that the disease brings to not only the patient, but everyone around them. But she has this wonderfully warm and caring side that she just really doesn’t give herself credit for. So many times I just wanted her to see what a terrific person she is, but when you have secrets like hers it can be hard to see what is right in front of you. Willa and Jem become lab partners in Social Studies. It begins as a horrible and annoying friendship of circumstance. Both are annoyed by the other, but you can tell there is something else there just swimming beneath the surface. And then a friendship begins; a complex, beautiful, enchanting, scary and frightening friendship. I really believe that Willa was a huge part in Jem’s recovery, and her sincerity and sensitivity were integral to him becoming him again. Their road is not easy by any stretch of the imagination. But through the entire book I was constantly pulling for them. I wanted them to work through his attitude, her ability to shut down, all of the mountains before them. I fell in love with these characters. I didn’t do the math, but you get a nearly daily account of their days for several months. It really gives you a chance to get to know them. I mean, you get to know these characters on such a basic level you feel like you’ve known them forever. When they hurt, so do you. And when they smile it puts you over the moon. This book was definitely magical and touching, and I was sad when it was over. But I WILL read it again. I have a feeling this is a book where you learn something new every time you read it. I wish it was in print, but I don’t believe it is. Another thing, if you are a foodie, make sure to check out Abria’s website while you read the book. Food plays a huge part in this story, and she is awesome enough to have the recipes on her site!I really believe this book is a hit, and you will too. So I hope you give it a chance. Don’t let the long length scare you off, it goes fast. In fact, I’m thinking sometime in the near future I will be including this book in a giveaway because when I find something I love, I have to share it with everyone! If you have already read it – please come talk to me!! I really need someone I can gush over the wonderfulness of it all with!Edit: Yes, it is in print on

  • Nina
    2019-01-24 14:55

    I received an e-copy of this from the author in exchange for an honest review.Wake is painfully long. Not that it was dragging or boring. It was painful in a way because of the characters and the story itself. The more I read, the more my heart ached for them. The more the story went on, the more I realize that it was truly a magnificent work of literature. The plot, the character development, and the writing style made me feel and realize that this is such a reality. That this really happens in real life. It is such a reflection of the people who lost someone from cancer, the people who fought with a loved one who had cancer and the person who had battled out cancer. See? Cancer's such a bitch.I can totally end my review with that paragraph alone. But no, I won't. I loved this too much that I'm gonna gush about it. Sorry, friends. Sometimes, the best thing you can do for a book you really love is to gush about it so others will know how it made your mind go crazy. Or that's just me.I love everything about Wake. The fact that it's long. I actually believed that it is far by the longest book I've ever read to date. Even if it was long, I was never bored. I wonder how Abria did that. I mean, she never once drag me along the story. I was always in the story, together with the characters. See? I'm with them. It was told from multi-POVs. But I wasn't bothered. I was able to know them. All. It was written in a way that made me feel I'm with them all along. I got to know them deeply. They're my friends. Oh man, I think I'm getting delusional right now. But whatever, that was how it affected me. That's why my heart ached a lot because Jem, Willa, Elise, Frank and Eric have their own struggles and baggage.I won't end this without saying how much I love Jem and Willa's romance. Definitely not an insta-romance! The development of their love was really there. You will really feel it. I swear. It was oh-so swoony. They had their ups and downs. Both of them were able to grow and accept each other despite their struggles. I just, I don't know. It was really the love that you know you'll have forever you know? It was totally worth fighting for. What am I saying exactly?Metaphor. I love that thing. And I don't know if I'm just getting crazy but there are a lot of it in here. Even the title. It's really catching for me. Oh, there was a part in here where I thought I'll die because I don't know if that character will actually last through. You know that moment when you know how cancer can kill you any minute? And you don't really have that strength to actually be positive because you don't really know what'll happen? The dread of that tempted me to peek at the ending. Haha. But I didn't. Because in real life, I cannot do that. I have to be on that moment. I certainly hoped for the best and prepared for the worst. Funny thing though? I know this was written already but I kept on thinking that it wasn't. That it was just actually happening.Alright. Time to end this gushing. There are a lot of things that were tackled in here. Everything that surrounds cancer will be here. This is actually my first time to read about someone who has gotten through cancer already. Well, Augustus from TFIOS was cancer-free but he still died in the end. Pft. This one is all about getting through the life after that cancer already. It really is hard, you know.Wake is an exceptionally beautiful novel that will catch your heart, mind and soul. It's long but not in the dragging way. You'll definitely fall in love with it. Especially with how Jem and Willa got through those storms. Life lessons are totally present here. But most especially, Wake is something that must be read by everyone because it'll totally open your eyes to a lot of things.P.S. Can't wait to read Love Among Pigeons.Originally posted at The Bookish Confections

  • Vishal Mudgal
    2019-01-31 07:06

    I believe in many things, mostly good & I also know that there's bad out there too. This book got me thinking on so many levels. I don't know if it is a sheer luck or what but I'm on to b'ful books this week. It was a long read, hence it will be a long review.Jeremiah or Jem had cancer but after his cute, absolutely adorable lil sis donates her bone marrow he's into remission & like every other sick person he feels pitied too(& no matter how hard you try, how hard you want to feel, you can't feel the same like a person who is pitied, feels). He deals with it by being a pessimistic. He is scared, anyone would, but he hides it under his nasty attitude.Then comes Wilhelmina Joanne Kirk (I liked her full name), a girl with her own share of past, who was everything but loved. I don't know why but everything boils down to love for me, can't help it, won't hide it.I loved Wilhelmina or Willa, she's a very brave kid. The best thing about this whole read was nobody assumed anything, if they did they said it out loud. Willa never tried to hide her secrets from Jem when she started falling for him or agreed to fall for him. She never acted what he'd think or worried & hid her secrets thinking he'd leave her.& then there's music in this book, lots & lots of tracks to listen & get lost in places where you meet the monstrous side of yours where you're stripped bare & can see yourself. That's the kind of love they had & that's the kind of love I root for where you're vulnerable enough, where you're honest enough to admit that you're scared & it is not a wound on your inflated ego because when you can bare your fears to one person that my dear friend is love, when you wear your scars knowing that the person in front of you loves you for who you actually are. Sounds easy but trust me it isn't.Just as when Hannah asks her how she can love Jem? The beauty which makes our heart beat sometimes we see it not in superficial sense. It is just love like when you're with right person it is perfect may be not to an outsider. Sometimes two wrongs makes right, right?And to sum up it all I'd like to quote my favorite quote from Holy Bible as it has been long since I mentioned itLove is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass awayAnd now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

  • Albert
    2019-02-12 11:10

    Overall Feedback: When I first started to check this book out the page number scared me. I mean over 700 pages in one book, but I took the chance and you should too. I agree with other reviews of this particular novel that it could have been cut down a bit if some of the narrative were taken out or maybe the author could seperate it into two distinct novels but I have to say that the story overall keeps the readers attention enough to get through all 759 pages of writing. Also while looking into some of the background of this one I noticed that it started out as fan fiction and I saw that a review was given based on this fact. I myself do not like fan fiction but I also know that all stories start somewhere and that is where this one started. As far as this current version of this novel I would have to recommend that everyone grab a copy and give it a try. The struggle of the characters will pull you in and maybe just one more reader will change their own perception of what they can make it through. I will warn that this is YA but with strong sexual situations and language usage.Point of View: The switching between points of view staggered me at first as there were many but the author is able to guide the reader through the switches and keep the story from becoming unfocused.Voice: For me the author was conveying a message of do not give up and that things can always get worse. I may have missed the mark but that is my opinion.Character: There are so many characters in this novel that it was hard to make sense of them all at first. Although I acknowledged all the characters I decided to pay attention to the main two only. This may have hurt the story a bit but it made for less character confusion.Plot: Everyone will be able to relate to the cancer and somewhat to the big reveal of Willa but I think some of the plot causes too much of a fight with what a reader will accept and what they are unwilling to allow. I do not think that there was enough to hurt the story but I think the author should pay a little more attention to this detail in the next one.Dialogue: With the characters I paid attention to I thought they related well but I do however think there social interaction with each other was a bit obtuse.Pacing: The author wrote such a large piece that she had to make sure the pace did not drag. There are a few places that will have you skipping ahead but the author does well to keep them at a minimul.Setting: In 759 pages you as the reader will not have any issue with the setting.Continuity: Very well written without leaving behind any detail that would have made a reader scratch their head and feel disappointed.

  • *Jessica
    2019-02-19 14:49

    Brilliant.This was a highly emotional read that allows you to get inside the head of a cancer patient in remission and in the head of a young girl with demons from her past that she has to overcome.The course that their relationship takes is full of highs and lows...At times you'll be laughing, enjoying the dry humor and banter of Jem and Willa, and other times your eyes will water because you can actually feel Jem's loneliness and desperation for a friend, or anyone who can understand him.This story, for me, was centered around Jem. Yes, a lot of this book deals with the mistakes of Willa's past, her learning to forgive herself, and Jem learning to love her despite of her past. I had a hard time liking Willa in the first half of the book. I thought she was a jerk to Jem when it wasn't necessary. When she hurt him, I would hate her. but at the same time, she took care of him like no one else, and at the half way point I finally started seeing how good she was for him. I still disliked her for part of the book though. This might be just because I connected so much with Jem's character. Whenever he was hurting, I felt it like it was happening to me. That's why I feel like this book achieved brilliance. Through Jem's character, you felt so many emotions. This books goes through great detail about his treatments, how he copes with pain daily, what goes through his head when people stare or whisper, what it felt like to finally have someone see him and not his illness. Their relationship started off loving to hate each other and it ending up being a deep love that could endure anything. By the end, it's like you see them as one person because they understand each other so fully. Everyone should give this book a read. Yes, it's long...but it's worth it. This is one of those books that after reading you know you'll always remember it. You'll fall in love with Willa and Jem. Again, Brilliant.

  • March Shoggoth Madness The Haunted Reading Room
    2019-01-25 06:46

    Originally reviewed for the Wake Blog Tour on Sept. 2, 2012:Review of Wake by Abria MattinaAn incredibly complex novel, the first adjective that comes to mind to describe “Wake” is-simply wonderful. I totally loved this book; each and every time a character revealed an emotional denouement, or a clue to personality, or a bit of backstory, I would think “Okay, that must be as deep as we’ll go with this individual,” but oh, how blissfully wrong that was! Ms. Mattina deftly and accurately demonstrates her knowledge of psychology, in a way that peels off the layers of masks which each of us hides behind, and exposes the true individual beneath, the self and spirit and guiding influences.There are two protagonists, in my view: Willa and Jem. Both are high school seniors: Jem is a “recovering” cancer patient; Willa has returned to Smiths Falls following the death of her beloved sister to cancer, and troubles of her own. Their push-me/pull-you acquaintance, then friendship, then potentially more, is so touching; heartwarming and heartbreaking all at once. Sometimes I just wanted to shake them both and shout, “Get some sense!” At other times, I wanted to reach in and deliver some hugs.“Wake” also has a set of “main” characters who are satellites in the orbits of Jem and Willa: Willa’s brother Frank, with whom she lives; Jem’s ADHD sister Elise, sixteen going on seventeen; Frank’s “friend” Doug and Doug’s brother Luke, also sixteen. Supporting characters are rife also, filling out the protagonists’ environment: Jem’s parents and older brother Eric; Willa’s absent parents; classmate friends Hannah and Paige, and frenemy Chris Elwood, and more.“Wake” runs to 759 pages, but believe me, it is well worth the read. I rate it 18+ for language and sexual situations. I’d like to give it 12 stars, if I could.

  • Tara
    2019-02-02 14:01

    4.5/5It took me awhile to be able to sit down with my thoughts on this book to give it an honest review - so here I am about a month later...this book was a very emotionally hard read to get through. Yes, it's long - like Stephen King's The Stand long (ok maybe not THAT long but close). However the author choose to alternate POV's which helped make the story line feel natural and honestly I didn’t really notice how long the book was till I was on day 3 and only 46% into it. I felt so many raw emotions, fear, anger, sadness for both MC's. If you know of someone who has had or is going through chemo - this will rock your world. All the pain and emotions that each character went through was so accurately displayed...such brutal honesty. I had no problem connecting with both MC's and I really liked how the male MC was described. Not often do you have an author who can pull off a male POV and have it come out accurately. His ordeal made you feel pain and understanding of what not only his physical ailments were but also his emotional. I highly recommend this read. Be ready for an eye opener. I had no idea what I was getting myself into but I am sure glad that I took the chance and once I began the book there was no stopping. It had a firm grasp on me and obviously a month later I can still feel its hold.

  • Emma
    2019-02-01 07:54

    DNF at 42%.I'm really disappointed to say the least. I wanted to love this book, I really did. I honestly had such high expectations for it but I simply could not finish it. To begin with, I was pretty enthusiastic about reading it and was interested to see what would happen, but eventually it was dragging on way too much for me. Willa really started to grate on my nerves and her relationship with Jem was so irritating and confusing. I found myself totally uninterested in what was going on. The length of this book is just insane! Why the fuck is it so long? I didn't even last halfway through and I kept trying again and again to continue it but I just didn't have the will power. It got to the stage where I had lost all interest in what would even happen at the end; the thought of finding out what happened didn't help in convincing me to keep ploughing through. I also found out this used to be Twilight fan fiction?! Let's just say that definitely didn't encourage me to go any further.I'm genuinely upset that I didn't enjoy this book as the majority of people loved it. I hate not finishing books but it was completely and utterly necessary.

  • Laura
    2019-02-08 11:45

    I enjoyed this story very much in the fanfiction realm and am happy to see the author pursue publishing it. Once the story began developing it was difficult for me to put down. I discovered empathy for the patient and learned about the trials of remission, as well as understanding for the survivor of the group homes and her means to exist through a prison mentality. I loved them both.The pace of the plot was pretty slow -- almost felt like it was in real time, and then to have the story end rather abruptly it felt as if the author just ran out of steam. There were several chapters written towards the end of the book about Jem's pneumonia and multiple trips to the hospital, and then his time at the end of the school semester just wrapped up rather uneventfully and then we have "The End." I'm glad there was an epilogue because otherwise the story would have just felt cut off. The typos were plenty and rather distracting so if the book is ever re-published and I hope those are corrected for the benefit of future fans.

  • Melissa Rheinlander
    2019-02-17 13:58

    (4.5) I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. This is a very detailed, very involved, and very raw book! Abria Mattina writes a graphic and emotional tale from two perspectives (sometimes more) of how sickness and death have affected the lives of the main characters ~ Willa and Jem as well as their families. I don't think there is any detail left out of this book (it is pretty long). I found it to be very personal also... my father passed away from cancer a few years ago and this made think of him, how he changed through his treatment and the effects it had on his family. I definitely recommend this book to others, it is well worth the long read!!Disclosure: I received a copy of the book for review purposes only through BLB Book Tours. I was not compensated to write a positive or favorable review. This is Keeping Up With The Rheinlander's personal opinion.

  • Kristi
    2019-01-25 11:42

    The emotional complexity in this book is truly amazing. The author deals with so many issues (drugs, sex, cancer, teen sexuality, suicide, etc.) and the reactions and actions of the characters ring so true. Her portrayal of Jem and Willa is unflinchingly honest -- these are two of the most "real" teens I've read about in YA fiction... ever. It's not always pretty. It can be gritty, heart-wrenching and R-rated. But it's definitely worth reading for the deep empathy Mattina shows for her difficult, heartbroken and heartbreaking characters.I agree with other reviews that the initial pace was a bit slow and perhaps early chapters could have been condensed. Overall, though, I enjoyed the story and the characters very much.

  • Feel The Book
    2019-02-20 06:58

    Recensione a cura di Cristina Robin per Feel The BookLa sinossi che accompagna il libro purtroppo non esprime la complessità e la profondità di questo romanzo, così come non può farlo la categoria in cui dovrebbe essere inserito, data la giovane età dei protagonisti. Il titolo in italiano può essere tradotto come “Risveglio” o “Rinascita”, ed è questo il nucleo fondante di tutto il libro. Wake è infatti la storia del percorso molto lungo, drammatico, descritto minuziosamente e in modo realistico, della vita di due giovani che si incontrano in un momento molto buio per entrambi.La narrazione si svolge attraverso i punti di vista alternati dei protagonisti – Willa e Jem – settimana dopo settimana, a partire dal loro primo incontro all’interno della loro classe di educazione sociale nella scuola superiore di Smiths Falls.Willa è appena arrivata in città. Jem, invece, vive a Smiths Falls da pochi mesi, poiché questo è il luogo scelto dai suoi genitori dopo il calvario della terribile malattia che gli ha stravolto la vita.Il lettore sa che il protagonista è in via di remissione e questo fatto rende la lettura meno traumatica da un certo punto di vista, ma può anche vedere quanto il suo corpo e la sua anima siano segnati dalla malattia che avrebbe potuto ucciderlo e che ancora pende su di lui come una spada di Damocle.Il ragazzo vive isolato dai suoi coetanei che lo evitano per il suo aspetto fragile e che porta angoscia. Lui per primo non permette a nessuno di avvicinarsi, ancora troppo arrabbiato con il destino che gli ha giocato quel terribile scherzo, troppo orgoglioso per accettare lo sguardo pietoso e irridente di chi lo circonda, troppo invischiato nel suo malessere e nella comprensibile preoccupazione che qualcosa possa ancora andare storto. La descrizione fisica del protagonista non è qualcosa a cui siamo abituati quando leggiamo un romanzo, e di certo non è ciò che solitamente cerchiamo: Jem è scheletrico, calvo, perennemente vittima di nausee terribili, di forti dolori e di stanchezza cronica a causa dei farmaci che sta ancora prendendo. Psicologicamente è un ragazzo complesso, un giovane che è stato obbligato a maturare precocemente e che ha visto la propria vita cambiare in modo così radicale, tanto da rimanerne traumatizzato. Non è più lo studente brillante, lo sportivo attraente e popolare che frequentava un’altra scuola superiore in una grande città. È una creatura che si veste, gioco forza, con abiti troppo larghi per il suo fisico provato, sotto berretti cuciti a mano per nascondere la testa calva, dietro silenzi e battute al vetriolo.Perché lui detesta chi è diventato ed è sicuro di non poter essere amato da nessuno a causa del suo aspetto e della sua malattia che gli impediscono di fare parte della vita “normale” dei suoi coetanei.Willa invece è la nuova ragazza a scuola. Sua sorella è da poco morta di cancro, quindi lei non teme la situazione di Jem, la conosce anzi così bene da trattarla con feroce normalità.Incontra il ragazzo il primo giorno di scuola e da quel momento la loro sarà una relazione molto dinamica e travagliata.Il loro rapporto si svolgerà lungo tutto il libro, tra dialoghi al vetriolo, divertenti, teneri e sensuali. C’è tutto insomma, giocato in moltissime sfumature che appagano chi,come me, a volte ha bisogno di perdersi nella psiche dei protagonisti che legge.Lui, all’inizio, è infastidito dalla cruda schiettezza della ragazza, unica tra tutti a non trattarlo come fosse un oggetto pericoloso o sul punto di andare a pezzi; lei è disturbata dal carattere cinico e aggressivo del suo nuovo amico. L’iniziale diffidenza si trasforma in un’amicizia complessa, profonda, ambivalente, coinvolgente, tenera, dura, fragile, bellissima, fino a trasformarsi in una storia d’amore unica nel suo genere. Insieme, i due, saranno in grado di ritrovare la perduta serenità, la loro identità, anche se per riuscirci dovranno superare momenti molto intensi ed emotivamente drammatici. Lei gli permetterà di vedersi di nuovo amabile, bello, lo nutrirà letteralmente e metaforicamente, rimettendolo in piedi, standogli accanto nei momenti peggiori. Lui la aiuterà a perdonarsi, ad amare ancora, a sentirsi buona, malgrado il suo passato.Ho iniziato questo libro per caso, spinta dai commenti di altre lettrici che lo definivano come diverso da tutto ciò che avevano letto in precedenza e mi sono trovata ad amarlo profondamente, perché l’autrice è stata brava ad andare oltre lo stereotipo del diciottenne medio, facendoci entrare nella complessità emotiva e cognitiva di quella fascia d’età in un modo assolutamente coinvolgente e credibile. Ho apprezzato anche il modo in cui si è mossa intorno alla tematica spinosa e dolorosa di una malattia terribile come il cancro, senza mai, mai, mai scadere nel melodrammatico o nell’artefatto.Wake potrebbe erroneamente passare per un libro adatto a lettori giovani a causa dell’età dei personaggi principali, ma le problematiche che tratta, la complessità delle relazioni rappresentate, l’approfondimento psicologico dei due ragazzi, uniti alla presenza di una trama che si sviluppa in modo coerente, armonico e con un ritmo assolutamente realistico, lo rende intrigante anche per un lettore adulto.Appagherà chi ama leggere della nascita di un sentimento intenso in tempi ragionevolmente lunghi, appagherà chi cerca l’amore profondo, appagherà chi cerca qualcosa di diverso, perché Wake è soprattutto una grande storia d’amore, una delle migliori che io abbia mai letto. Editing recensione a cura di Aletheia per Feel The Book