Ava is welcomed home from the hospital by a doting mother, lively friends, and a crush finally beginning to show interest. There's only one problem: she can't remember any of them - and can't shake the eerie feeling that she's not who they say she is.
Ava struggles to break through her amnesiac haze as she goes through the motions of high-school life, but the memories that surface take place in a very different world, where Ava and familiar-faced friends are under constant scrutiny and no one can be trusted. Ava doesn't know what to make of these visions, or of the boy who is at the center of them all, until he reappears in her life and offers answers . . . but only in exchange for her trust.
I don't know what to think of this book, and honestly, I don't know if I could ever explain this storyline to anyone. I've read most of Elizabeth Scott's novels which I absolutely loved and adored since she reminded me of authors like Sarah Dessen, and when I came across yet another new novel of hers . . . I knew it was a must read since I was a big fan of hers already. But if you're like me and are a fan of Scott's previous novels, then I should warn you all to expect something completely and utterly different from Scott's usual writing style. It's not the book you would expect from her and it will surprise you on how different it is compared to her other books.
I'm guessing on a whim here but AS I WAKE seems like a book of the sci-fi genre and I tend to love that genre in both young adult and adult fiction. However, while I thought the concept of the book sounded very interesting and not to mention the cover art draws you in as well, but clearly I got this book all wrong. Really wrong. The book relies heavily on alternative universes and I don't mind that idea - but it's just plain weird. For me at least. I hate to criticize one of my favourite YA authors, but the true problem of this book is the way it's written and that nothing is really explained to the reader. Take for example with the main character, Ava, who has a form of amnesia going on and who knows what else. In Scott's writing, she manages to make you just as confused as the character was in the book and while I admire that style of writing and the scattered puzzle pieces of this world she had created, but from what I was reading and trying to put together . . . it was like I was on drugs. Or rather if I 'was' a drug addict, then probably this book would make total sense to me. Before you go saying, "Why would you say that?", I'm just saying that that's the way I felt about AS I WAKE and maybe other readers could connect to this story more than I ever could. Or again - maybe not.
Overall, AS I WAKE started out strong. It was still compelling throughout the story because you wanted answers as much as Ava did but I wanted more. I enjoyed it to a certain low extent but by the time you hit the ending and have a few question marks floating around your head . . . let's just go with a what-the-hell moment. Trust me you will have a few of those moments. All-in-all this was my least favourite Elizabeth Scott novel but I hope her next book is a little better and perhaps she should stick with the young adult contemporary novels or something that makes some sense to me. I recommend this book to anyone who loves to be confused (you know, like Shutter Island and Inception minus the movie awesomeness). And by the way, if you can't see my face, just look at the cover and see me crying in frustration with the dark smoke representing my brain exploding. Damn. I really wanted to love this book too . . . sighs.