The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong - If you had met me a few weeks ago, you probably would have described me as an average teenage girl—someone normal. Now my life has changed forever and I'm as far away from normal as it gets. A living science experiment—not only can I see ghosts, but I was genetically altered by a sinister organization called the Edison Group. What does that mean? For starters, I'm a teenage necromancer whose powers are out of control; I raise the dead without even trying. Trust me, that is not a power you want to have. Ever.
Now I'm running for my life with three of my supernatural friends—a charming sorcerer, a cynical werewolf, and a disgruntled witch—and we have to find someone who can help us before the Edison Group finds us first. Or die trying. From Amazon UK
I was so excited I received this book for Christmas, seeing as I loved The Summoning so much. The Summoning was so exciting, with great characters and such a cool plot, so I was chuffed to have received this book. I've now read it, and I'm feeling a little disappointed.
Don't get me wrong, the book itself wasn't bad; the characters are just as awesome as they were before, the writing as just as good, there's no fault there. I think my problem is with the plot. I haven't read the third book in the series, The Reckoning, yet, obviously, but it felt to me like Kelley knew how the series was going to end, but couldn't just start The Reckoning after The Summoning, so needed The Awakening as filler to bridge the gap. Not an awful lot happens for a book of it's length. Before I knew it, I was over half way through, and still waiting for something important to the actual plot line from The Summoning.
I shall continue for now with some positives, because there were some really good bits! I love the way Kelley writes; Chloe's voice, thoughts and fears are just so fascinating, you don't want to put the book down. I want to get to know Chloe, and the others, better because their lives and what they're going through is just so clever. Chloe learns a little more about her necromancy ability in this book, and it's kind of freaky just how far she can go. Tori has to face some harsh truths, and I can't help but feel sorry for her, even when she is being a cow. Derek is so awesome, I swear; he's strong, he's brave, he's self-sacrificing, he's just brilliant! Simon is lovely, but he annoys me sometimes with just how nice he is. I know he likes Chloe, but he shouldn't be so happy-cheery all the time, it's grating. Liz is still one of my favourite characters, she's just on the right side of quirky, and I love her! I am liking the hint of a love triangle that weaves its way throughout the book, though I know who I would choose.
They find out something fairly huge about themselves in this book, and it puts them all on edge a little, though I can't really go into why without spoiling a major plot point (which I would like to point out we find out at the very beginning of the book). There is a fair amount of action, of the creepy ghost/zombie kind, dodging baddies kind, and fighting kind, and it's all suspenceful and will have you sitting on the edge of your seat. Quite a bit of a thrill rollercoaster.
This all sounds pretty good, right? So why am I disappointed? So much of what happens is just not necessary to the plot. I suppose there is the possibility that there are going to be things happening in The Reckoning that link back to small events from this book, but from what's hinted at, at the end of this book, it doesn't look likely. These small events happen, then they're over, and I'm thinking "Why was that there?" We hear from authors that when their books are edited, the editors get the authors to cut out the "filler" that's just not neccesary, to make the book tighter, and to me, it seems they forgot a fair amount. Sure, it's all interesting to read, but just leaves me thinking why? In my opinion, this book could be compressed to a third of its length.
Saying all that, The Awakening is a fairly quick read, and there are a few major plot points that are imperative to the story, so you can't just skip this book. And as I said, I did enjoy reading it, I was just a little let down. If you read and enjoyed The Summoning, I say you should definitely read this book, because The Reckoning, which will be released 6th April 2010, looks to be incredible and this book needs to be read before it. Over all, not a bad book, but did leave me wanting more. I'd still recommend it to all fans of the Darkest Power series.
Published: 4th May 2009
Buy on Amazon UK
Pre-order paperback on Amazon US
Kelley Armstrong's Website
My other reviews of the Darkest Powers series:
The Summoning (reviewed on Ink and Paper)
Other Reviews of The Awakening:
The Epic Rat
The Diary of a Bookworm