I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. Here it is, my thoughts on We Awaken, by Calista Lynne.
Get this book from Harmony Ink Press
I’ve seen this gorgeous cover all over Tumblr and I was actually really curious to read the book itself! One of the main topics of the story is asexuality, which isn’t talked about enough. For those who aren’t familiar with it, asexuality is a very valid sexual orientation, defining anyone who doesn’t feel sexual attraction, although there’s different sub-types. I’m all for diverse and accurate representation in books, so I was so for supporting this book!
Victoria is still trying to come to term with the car accident that killed her father and her brother in a comma, while also trying to get into the Manhattan Dance Conservatory. One day, her dreams are taken over by this magical girl and they fall in love with each other.
I enjoyed this book. Contemporary, specially romance, isn’t really my thing but I actually had a good experience reading this novel. I powered through it in like a day, so that’s a good sign. Even with that said, I also did have some problems with it too.
But first, the things I enjoyed. I said it before but I’ll mention it again: representation is so important!!! I will strongly recommend this book too pretty much anyone because I feel like a wider audience needs to learn about all variations of people. It’s so important to have a safe and good representation of marginalised groups. This only promotes acceptance and I can stress enough how that is the best way to make the world a better place for everyone. I also really liked the writing, which was very flourished and pretty. It seemed to be very old-timie occasionally, contrasting a bit with the setting of the story.
Unfortunately, there were a couple of things I personally thought didn’t quite work very well. Mostly, I really didn’t care for the plot itself. Things seemed very out of place at times, like the whole dancing thing which is only there to give this book more pages. It isn’t really relevant to anything. Or maybe it’s the contrary, the novel seemed to need more pages to deepen a lot of points. It’s only like 180 pages, I’m sure there must be a change to up that number and give the book more plot. The romance between Victoria and Ashlinn is just so instant and quick. And the fact that Ashlinn is an ancient and magical being didn’t help. That’s not even doubted for a moment. I mean, if a cute girl appeared in my dreams, I would be pretty sure they were just that and not reality, like the protagonist believes from the beginning. That kinda bothered me.
I can see a lot of potential in this book, specially in the author’s style but there’s definitely space for improvement. I think everyone should give this book a chance either way because there’s not a lot of things more beautiful than love (specially women loving women, which isn’t very portrayed) and acceptance.
Here’s one beautiful quote:
“You told me how you hate daffodils because they’re morbid. They stick around for a month making everything lemon drop yellow, then die and get replaced by worse flowers.
How the hell does an elementary schooler grasp the concept of beauty not being permanent?”
In case you’ve read this, please let me know your thoughts.
Until next time,