The Catholics think they have some bad publicity but there are still plenty of them running around, not to mention several other “churches” glad I got to read about a fictional one for a change. Wake Up and Smell the Nuts Everyone, it’s pretty crazy.
“It’s only forbidden, but nothing to be ashamed of”
― D.S. Wrights, Wake
For the most part, no, I mean it was a bit slow in going but once it picked up, I was in a way rooting for the villains, not all the way to the end of course but I was somewhat impressed by the sheer villainy. Nothing to be ashamed of story wise though the editing, I’m no editor, not in the slightest, except when I’m noticing these things every few pages… seriously me being a writer, it puts the fear of God into me.
Speaking of God, I always applaud any of author with the guts to go after the religious even if they are a “cult” and we all know these sort of groups, lie somewhere and nobody can escape unscathed. You won’t find any voices of reason in this book, either everyone is crazy or lying to some degree just to maintain, whatever they hold sanity to be. Character development pretty much lies on one concept, how crazy are you and when will you cross the line.
Nobody embodiments that more than our antihero Samael, and the heroine Anna, Samantha, Anna, trying to be Rachel it gets pretty confusing for both characters and reader alike. I guess love is sort of crazy when you look at it and of course, this is one of those stories where somebody has plenty of cash on hand, and while it doesn’t justify the crazy, I’m sure plenty of women will read it. Guys too if they have ever had such and such a dark urge and I will not delve into that rabbit hole, here.
So if you’re ready for crazy and a whole lot of dominant males though I was surprised by mother Rachel which shows women can be just as evil then this is a decent read, I won’t say good, for plenty of reasons but again we will get into that in a bit first the rundown.
Crazy mom, decent grandparents, indoctrination into a cult, predators, molesters, oldest crimes in the oldest traditions, girl falls in love with a boy/man-child and then escapes without him, not her choice. Retaken by the cult, boy/man-child has been warped and still crying out for daddy’s acceptance is going to train the girl and if you’re into this genre you can sort of see where this is going, not rocket science.
Now a part of me actually wants to say I sort of agree with Samael because I know how churches/cults can be that’s why you start with children but the ending in a way negates all that. Him being convinced that Anna betrayed him but he was already grown if he could break through the conditioning long enough to help her escape how could he be so sure it was all her fault. He truly got me in the end though, you don’t see many stories that don’t end with a happily ever after scenario, a change of pace indeed.
In all fairness, with Anna’s background, anyone would be messed up too and the captivity doesn’t help with that so her staying the same throughout is par for the course. I do think her character was somewhat beyond belief but again maybe it was her upbringing that kept her from screaming bloody murder for the most part. The scene between her and Samael was explosive when they finally got her virginity out of the way, though the teasing was awesome as well, to an extent, it grew tedious after a bit but the stories of Samael’s past with Rachel were wow with a bit of sick to go with it.
I think the ending could have been something more if the other characters were flushed out, don’t get me wrong we get back stories to most of them but again beyond belief when Anna can just present an idea and okay it’s been years nobody thought to do this? The Church of the Second Reckoning and everything maybe the author could have flushed Joshua out more, and explained how he kept power, though I have seen infighting in most churches.
In all I give “Wake” three stars, it was dark, it was creepy, not the typical ending and pretty twisted indeed there was plenty to like and if the author would just get some new editing and crank up the sex but maybe that’s just me being a guy. The editing just pulls you out of the story, you’re falling right into and next thing you know you’re ripped out.
I suppose my favorite part is when Anna is alone with the Samael’s other two brothers, I guess I should also mention spoilers but come on, everyone knows when it’s coming. Personally, I could have used a bit more graphical language but just the fact that the hero doesn’t come in and save the day just in the nick of time. Also the ending, there are few books especially a standalone that leave characters still screwed up and just saying, okay this is life so deal with it as so.
Other than the editing, I think Anna’s character, like mother, like daughter, came off a bit too cunning with her manipulations, in a place where people are killing each other left and right, nobody had an inkling to I don’t know get to Joshua? The teasing got a bit annoying after awhile, I’m never sure with erotica but some are a straight sexual smorgasbord and others are, maybe, still waiting, and okay. Also while Sam’s dad was lying to him, why was everybody lying to Anna, okay she’s a kid but the fact that they lied while soothing themselves did nothing for Anna, the characters could be pretty dense if they weren’t psychotic or just plain mad; genius and insanity.
This isn’t something I would have sought out, probably because of the religious jargon but it hits the right note between what we know in the news and completely unbelievable. Three stars, pay the money for the editing I know I will, now if you’ll excuse me I might actually need a nap after this, exciting and my brain hurts.