Awaken - Katie Kacvinsky
Received from NetGalley
Genre: YA, Science Fiction/Fantasy
Expected Publication - 5/23/11
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 homes. 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.
First off, the cover art is amazing! It is honestly what brought this book to my attention in the first place.
I definitely enjoyed this book, and found myself unable to put it down. It was fast-paced and had such a fantastic plot. I know that a ton of YA books tend to lean to the romance-y side of things, however while there was a bit of that in this book, it wasn't the main premise.
I could not imagine a world in which I did not have daily physical interaction with other humans. I think I would lose my mind! Many of the technological things that Maddie had in her house seemed awesome, like the digital ceiling canvas, and the computer alarm that woke her up...but it also seemed drab and boring. I can't argue that there would be a lot less crime, etc in teenagers if schools and everything else was socialized, but I also feel like this would be such a hellish trap.
Could you imagine going on a "virtual date"? At one point, Maddie is invited to climb Mt. Everest with one of the family friends. How weird is that!?
I liked Maddie, however I did find her rather annoying at times. My favorite character in the book had to be Justin. Not just because he seemed so smart and dreamy, but he was a much more rounded character, and seemed to have everything under control all the time.
While I don't think that digital school and a digital life are for me, I did enjoy this book and I would recommend it.
My Favorite Quotes:
"Life is too short to say maybe."
"...no amount of power is worth having when it means hurting the people you love."
"It's like looking through a microscope your whole life...you miss the whole picture. Sometimes you need to get lost in order to discover anything."
"But sometimes the more disoriented you are, the more clearly you start to see."
Writing Style: 4