Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Book Review: Awaken

Awaken by Katie Kacvinsky

Source:  ARC provided by Amazon Vine

Rating:  4/5

Maddie lives in a world where everything is done on the computer. Whether it’s to go to school or on a date, people don’t venture out of their home. There’s really no need. For the most part, Maddie’s okay with the solitary, digital life - until she meets Justin. Justin likes being with people. He enjoys the physical closeness of face-to-face interactions. People aren’t meant to be alone, he tells her.

Suddenly, Maddie feels something awakening inside her - a feeling that maybe there is a different, better way to live. But with society and her parents telling her otherwise, Maddie is going to have to learn to stand up for herself if she wants to change the path her life is taking.

In this not-so-brave new world, two young people struggle to carve out their own space.

My Thoughts:
This story really struck a chord with me, as I can easily see our society moving in this direction. So much is done online now that some prefer to live through their avatars rather than deal with people face to face. Life online is easier, and there's always the delete button!

Despite being raised immersed in the digital life, Maddie is still able to think for herself and has a rebellious, independent streak. While her father is a firm advocate of Life Is Better Online, Maddie isn't so sure. There's something to be said for human interaction, especially interaction with the cute and charismatic Justin! What Justin says makes sense, and the more Maddie learns, the more she's dissatisfied with her current life.

Really enjoyed this one, and it makes you think. Yes, life is easier can present yourself however you like and avoid the awkwardness of small talk and having to talk to strangers. But we shouldn't give up on real life, no matter how tempting, because it's dangerous to lose touch with our fellow man. Sounds a little silly, but how else to explain flash mobs starting riots instead of pillow fights? It's too easy to disconnect when you're online all the time.

Don't mean to sound preachy, but this book does make you wonder. Katie is a very talented writer, and I really liked Maddie! Can't wait to see what Katie comes up with next!

This ARC was provided by the Amazon Vine program in exchange for an honest review.


  1. I saw a review of this book on another blog and I have to say the concept really creeps me out. I can so see our society going that way. So many people (myself included sometimes) prefer their online persona to their real ones! I'll have to pick this up to see how it deals with this challenge!

  2. This sounds like a thoughtful read...I'll have to check it out! Wonderful review, Alexia :)

  3. Glad that you enjoyed this book! I was thinking about reading it. I'll probably give it a chance now!

  4. Oh great review. And I like the theme of this book. With online verses in person life. :) Thank you!

  5. Sounds like an intersting book. Though I'm not sure another YA book is on my to do list for a while.

  6. Woah! Heard some good things about this book, thought provoking. Great Review!

  7. Sounds like an interesting and thought-provoking read! :-)

  8. I'd gotten this one from NG but then it didn't work for me for some reason so I never got to read it. Then I was surprised I saw so few reviews for it and have been very curious. I know that I LOVE the internet too much. I can do stuff without leaving the house and have conversations with like minded people and still be dealing with my kids and they don't even know! Anyway, I can see us slipping into a society like this and I think this book would really make me think. Thanks for the awesome review!

  9. It does sound like a very pertinent book for our times. I'll have to check it out!

  10. Please for Christ sake help this poor boy from Haiti