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Reviewed by April Kirkland

Gemma loves the water. So much so that not only is she on the swim team but she also goes for late night swims down at the bay. One night on her way there her car breaks down and the cute next door neighbor, her sister’s best friend Alex, gives her a ride. Just as it seems like everything is starting to look up for Gemma, three girls come to town and change everything. Penn, Lexi, and Thea are beautiful, the kind of girls that guys lust after and girls envy. But they are not quite what they seem. In fact they can be down right terrifying and they want Gemma to be a part of their group.

One night during Gemma’s late night swim they invite her to party with them at the cove. Although Gemma doesn’t trust them she ends up there anyhow. She wakes up the next morning on the beach dazed and bruised with no recollection of what happened. Something has changed: she’s now faster, stronger, and prettier than ever. As she discovers the truth about the girls and what they want with her, she uncovers secrets that will force her to make unimaginable choices.

I loved the characters in Wake – Amanda Hocking really makes her characters come to life. There’s Gemma, a small town girl who has to make impossible choices; Alex, the boy next door, who transforms from geek to hunk and falls for his best friend’s little sister; Harper, the overprotective sister, who has to grow up too fast and doesn’t make time for fun; and the mean girls in town who are shrouded in mystery and danger.

Although Wake tells a fascinating story of love, choices, and mystery, there is still much to be discovered. We never fully find out what happened to the fourth girl that is briefly mentioned and I look forward to hearing that story. Wake is vivid and imaginative and it is far from a typical happy-ending-fairy-tale. I think anyone who enjoys fairy tales and fantasy with a bit of a dark side would really enjoy this book.

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Listen to an excerpt from the Wake audiobook here

April is a stay at home mom and wife. She lives in a small county in Alabama famous for its peaches. She loves to write poetry, read, and paint, and is also an aspiring author.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by St. Martin’s Griffin. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.