Review: Those That Wake by Jesse Karp


Title: Those That Wake

Author: Jesse Karp

# Of Pages: 336

Publisher: Harcourt Childrens Books

Publication Date: March 21st 2011

Source: Library

Rating: 1 Heart


(From Barnes&

New York City’s spirit has been crushed. People walk the streets with their heads down, withdrawing from one another and into the cold comfort of technology. Teenagers Mal and Laura have grown up in this reality. They’ve never met. Seemingly, they never will.

But on the same day Mal learns his brother has disappeared, Laura discovers her parents have forgotten her. Both begin a search for their families that leads them to the same truth: someone or something has wiped the teens from the memories of every person they have ever known. Thrown together, Mal and Laura must find common ground as they attempt to reclaim their pasts.

My Verdict

Dystopian is one of my favorite YA genres! One that I’ve become completely obsessed with over the summer. So when I read the synopsis for Those That Wake I couldn’t get my hands on it fast enough. A dystopian world plus cool futuristic technology, and memories being erased, what could be better? Or so I thought… this book was a huge disappointment and quite frankly not worth the time it took me to drag myself through all 336 pages.

The setting of a book is a huge part of the story. A well-thought out and well described settings helps draw the reader in, as well as bring the story to life. I feel that setting is even more important in dystopian fiction than anywhere else. The world has to be brilliantly created and described to make it believable. With that being said, I don’t think the author spent enough time setting up and describing this futuristic New York City and how it came to be. Except for mentions of a terrorist attack known as “the big black” and the ever looming giant dome that now covers part of the city.
I had a really hard time connecting with any of the main characters. Each chapter was written from a different perspective, which made it so that you never really got too deep into the mindset of any one character, instead you got more of an overview, bits and pieces of everyone. When Mal and Laura found themselves in life threatening situations I tried to make myself care, but I honestly couldn’t care less weather they survived or not, because I couldn’t relate to them on any level.
There was quit a bit of science fiction elements to the story as well as dystopian, which really only worked to confuse me so much so that when the book was over I didn’t even know what had really happened.
I know other people have read and really enjoyed this book. I read some good reviews for it beforehand. I guess those people saw something in it that I apparently did not. I would say don’t waste your time with this one; cause you can’t get that time back.


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