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Awake by Melanie Surani
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Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Five strangers wake up in an eerie, boarded up museum. Some are minor celebrities, some normal people. Josh is an opera star, Ajay is a Bollywood actor, Sophia is a fan of Josh, Demetri is a Bollywood fan and Don, the ex-boyfriend of the common link between the five strangers, an eccentric artist named Blair. The last thing that all five remember is a run in with a woman named Blair. Now, apparently drugged and what they assume is a few days later, they have woken up inside her boarded up museum. As the group tries to figure out exactly what has happened to them and try to figure a way out of the strange museum, tensions rise as some members of the group come to believe that others are responsible for them being trapped.
This was an incredibly unique concept, live people unknowingly trapped as museum exhibits. The beginning really grasped me; written from Blair’s point of view as she is trying to figure out how to kidnap Sophia, we have insight into the villain and artist who will create the creepy displays. From there though, we are thrown to the victim’s perspective after they wake up. This is where I have just as many questions as Sophia, Josh and the others: where are they? How did they get there? What did Blair do to them? And why are they locked in? Things quickly intensify as more people are found locked in the museum. The points of view switch between the captives. Sophia seems to be the only one who can keep it together through everything while the men swiftly jump to conclusions, become violent and go stir crazy. Things sort of fell apart for me a little bit near the end as the different parties start working against one another instead of just turning in Blair. Anyway, I think incorporating Blair’s point of view throughout the novel instead of just beginning and end would have helped to tie things together. Also, I kept on reading so I could figure out how the heck Blair pulled off keeping people as living statues for 10 years, it is eventually revealed, but I was a little unenthused by her means. I did, however, love how the group got back at Blair by the end. Overall, an interesting thriller with a unique concept, and a lot of character drama.

This book was received for free in return for an honest review. ( )
  Mishker | Sep 13, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was very excited to receive it since the description sounded very intriguing and this genre of book is right up my alley. It started off well enough, but the more it went on, the more I began to dislike it. The first issue was the preposterous premise that a drug could literally turn living people into rigid statues for 10+ years where they are still alive inside despite them not breathing or having any bodily functions during the entire time they are ‘frozen’, where they are examined daily by museum-goers who have no trouble believing that they are real statues? And then suddenly they wake up after a decade and by some miracle their muscles haven’t atrophied and they are able to just get up and pick up where they left off. To make things worse, the five people who got ‘frozen’ months apart all spontaneously wake up at the exact same time, as if the drug had a calendar-based expiry date? All of it was just completely beyond the realm of plausibility – so far-fetched that this alone ruined the entire book for me. It could have worked had this been marketed as a sci-fi book set very far into the future, but it wasn’t. The second issue was a glaring lack of character development, and the author’s inability to make the characters seem likable or believable in any way. And the superfluous love affair between Sophia and Josh seemed ridiculous and out of place… not how people behave when panicked and trapped in an underground museum. So while the original idea had tremendous potential, the execution was far from successful. ( )
  rivergen | Jun 30, 2015 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I can always use a good suspense novel in my life. I received this book from LibraryThing in exchange for an honest review. It wasn't my favorite book, and while it was well written, I didn't feel that it constantly "flowed" throughout the story. The characters were like able and the plot was one I haven't read before, I tend to read a lot of the same concept in novels. It was the first book that I have read, though I prefer an actual hard copy. It was a very good start to a novel and I give the encouragement to the author to keep up the good work. :)
  ksuen89 | Jun 30, 2015 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Thanks to Library Thing for a free e-copy of Awake in exchange for an honest review. I was really intrigued with the premise of waking up in an abandoned museum with no knowledge of how you got there or even where you were and I thought that the addition of police reports and blog entries was a nice touch. Although I didn't really care for any of the characters, I found the plot very suspenseful. It was hard to tear myself away from the book in many parts. At other times, I found it either too confusing or unbelievable. I can't help but think it would make a great movie though. ( )
  paulamc | Jun 22, 2015 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received this e-book through LibraryThing in exchange for an honest review. I'll start by saying this isn't a genre that I tend towards, but the premise sounded intriguing. The book starts out with a bang though early on I couldn't decide if Surani is a talented writer, or as her bio suggests, a blogger/hairstylist capable of stringing together a few sentences. That's not very nice of me, but I had a hard time getting past that. What I conclude is that she has one hell of an imagination, and she's crafted a tale of which I suspect Shonda Rhimes would probably approve. In some ways, as the story developed, Surani's writing got stronger. But, as the writing got better, the story got more convoluted.

Between some very choppy transitions and a few twists too many, I lost the thread altogether, and at that point I was back to questioning the writing. The story also suffers from a few too many implausibilities or plot points that aren't developed enough to be believable. For example, one major character gets injured and the crap beaten out of him so many times, it's a wonder he makes it as far in the telling as he does. And that's another problem I had: I didn't like any of the characters. But, I will say this: for about the first two thirds, I could not put it down. I was exceedingly curious to see where things were going. Unfortunately, the last third got a little too out there for me. Again, this reminds me of Shonda Rhimes. The first couple seasons of Scandal, I was drawn along by all the rapid twists and turns, but by season 3 I'd lost interest, knowing there's never a satisfying end, just more of the same. It's fair to say that I skimmed the last portions of Awake because I simply wanted to know what happens, but the journey no longer interested me. That said, it'd make a great movie. ( )
  mpho3 | Jun 10, 2015 |
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For Nizzar. You wanted to be in the book.
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Blair didn't go to the theater for a night of opera, but to kidnap Sophia Stewart.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
In author Melanie Surani's edgy thriller novel, opera singer Joshua Gray wakes in an eerie art museum exhibit. He comes to believe he's been kidnapped and abandoned. And he isn't the only one...

As Josh and four others struggle to piece together their new reality, they discover the museum's main building has been razed and the place is boarded with no obvious exit. Who left them in the museum and why? How can they escape? The only link that binds them together is a mysterious woman named Blair, who they each encountered before blacking out. Josh unexpectedly finds himself drawn to one of the other captives, a long-time fan named Sophia. Their attraction plunges the group into a dark pool of suspicion. When allegiances shift and pieces connect, the strangers are forced to reassess their situation. Is the real danger inside or outside of the museum?

Suspenseful, romantic and filled with drama, Awake will keep you up all night.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 162015935X, Paperback)

In author Melanie Surani’s edgy thriller novel, opera singer Joshua Gray wakes in an eerie art museum exhibit. He comes to believe he’s been kidnapped and abandoned. And he isn’t the only one… As Josh and four others struggle to piece together their new reality, they discover the museum’s main building has been razed and the place is boarded with no obvious exit. Who left them in the museum and why? How can they escape? The only link that binds them together is a mysterious woman named Blair, who they each encountered before blacking out. Josh unexpectedly finds himself drawn to one of the other captives, a long-time fan named Sophia. Their attraction plunges the group into a dark pool of suspicion. When allegiances shift and pieces connect, the strangers are forced to reassess their situation. Is the real danger inside or outside of the museum? Suspenseful, romantic and filled with drama, Awake will keep you up all night.

(retrieved from Amazon Fri, 03 Jul 2015 06:23:37 -0400)

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