Book Review: Wild Awake by Hilary T. Smith

Wild Awake
Author: Hilary T. Smith
Reading Level: YA
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Released: May 28th 2013
Review Source: Katherine Tegen Books
Available: Amazon

Summary: (from goodreads) Things you earnestly believe will happen while your parents are away:

1. You will remember to water the azaleas.

2. You will take detailed, accurate messages.

3. You will call your older brother, Denny, if even the slightest thing goes wrong.

4. You and your best friend/bandmate Lukas will win Battle of the Bands.

5. Amid the thrill of victory, Lukas will finally realize you are the girl of his dreams.

Things that actually happen:

1. A stranger calls who says he knew your sister.

2. He says he has her stuff.

3. What stuff? Her stuff.

4. You tell him your parents won’t be able to—

5. Sukey died five years ago; can’t he—

6. You pick up a pen.

7. You scribble down the address.

8. You get on your bike and go.

9. Things . . . get a little crazy after that.*

*also, you fall in love, but not with Lukas.

Both exhilarating and wrenching, Hilary T. Smith’s debut novel captures the messy glory of being alive, as seventeen-year-old Kiri Byrd discovers love, loss, chaos, and murder woven into a summer of music, madness, piercing heartbreak, and intoxicating joy.

I've heard a great deal about Wild Awake, both good and bad. I have to say I'm right smack in the middle. I wasn't entirely thrilled with Kiri our MC, but Smith's writing took my breath away. Her words literally took on a life of its own.

Kiri Byrds's parents have just left for a summer long cruise to celebrate their 25th anniversary, thus leaving her alone at home. She practices on her piano eight hours a day, waters the azaleas and brings in the mail. She does this every day just as her mother instructed. She has a huge showcase at the end of the summer and she must stay focused. She's also part of a band with her best friend Lucas and they're getting ready for battle of the bands. Kiri has a lot going on and she can't lose track of what's important. That soon changes when Kiri gets an unexpected phone call. A stranger calls to say that he has her sisters things, that if she wants them she has to go and get them. The only thing is that Sukey, Kiri's sister, was killed five years ago in a car accident, or at least that's what she's been lead to believe.

Wild Awake is an emotionally gripping story about grief, feeling lost and somehow find a way to cope. I'm not entirely sure how I feel about this book yet, but I know it's left it's imprint on me. You have to go into this book with an open mind and just enjoy the ride. You might be surprised at how you feel once you're on the other side.

1 comment:

  1. Knowing that this book has excessive alcohol and drug abuse makes me not want to read it because I really don't like reading about it, but the mental issues you mentioned and the accuracy of them has made me curious enough to add it to my tbr. Lovely review, Andy!

    Irene Jennings of Cold Laser Dallas


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