Review + Excerpt: Wide Awake by Shelly Crane

My Thoughts

Original, moving, sweet and authentic!
A book about finding yourself and being brave enough
to be just who YOU are.

4stars

Synopsis

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A girl.
A coma.
A life she can’t remember.

When Emma Walker wakes up in the hospital with no knowledge of how she got there, she learns that she’s been in a coma for six months. Strangers show up and claim to be her parents, but she can’t remember them. She can’t remember anyone. Not her friends, not even her boyfriend. Even though she can’t remember, everyone wants her to just pick up where she left off, but what she learns about the ‘old her’ makes her start to wish she’d never woken up. Her boyfriend breaks up with the new girl he’s dating to be with her, her parents want her to start planning for college, her friends want their leader back, and her physical therapist with the hazel eyes keeps his distance to save his position at the hospital.

Will she ever feel like she recognizes the girl in the mirror?

My Review

“It doesn’t matter who you were or what you’ve done in the past. The only thing that matters is who you are right now.”

Emma Walker wakes up in a hospice, where she was expected to die. After being in a coma for 6 months, she can’t recall a single thing from the last 19 years. The first thing she sees is concerned and caring hazel eyes that belong to Mason Wright, her physical therapist. Soon, she’s surrounded by her family that she can’t remember. Feeling scared, lost and exhausted, she’s shaken to her core. She fades into herself, not quite ready to jump back into her own life.

“It had been over a week since I woke up. My body was alive, but my own brain just shut down. It was as if I was still asleep, but aware of what was going on around me. My eyes were open, and I just lay there and tried not to remember that I couldn’t remember anything.”

The more she learns about herself, the less she can identify with the girl she was before that terrible accident when someone ran her over and left her for dead. Her old self is vain, insists on getting what she wants, doesn’t care about school, dates a shallow football player named Andy and is the leader of the most popular clique in school. Her parents seem disappointed that she’s not her old self, but rather a completely different girl that desires no connection with the old Emmie. However, “one factor was constant… Mason.” He is always at her side, never scolding her, but rather comforting, protecting and understanding her.

She threw her fight into the physical therapy that was needed to help her walk again. And soon, she knew she would have to leave and face life outside the hospice. With mounting pressure and disappointment from her parents, her siblings and even her boyfriend, she felt uncertain of who she was … who she should be.

“I seemed to be coming to a crossroads. A stay or go situation. A left or right predicament. I needed to get out of this place and start trying to figure out what I wanted most. To try and be some girl I didn’t know, or try to be happy and live my life as the girl I was now.”

As the countdown begins before she goes home, Mason seems conflicted on whether or not succumb to the pull he feels towards Emma… and that Emma feels towards him. He seems to hide something…

“Sometimes knowing when to let go is just as important as knowing when to hold tight.”

This book was so moving and real. I really felt the depths of emotion the characters felt… the conflict, the uncertainty, the fear and so many times, the disappointment. Thankfully, Emma had Mason. Their feelings intensify and they begin to fall in love. Mason has been everything to Emma.

“You brought me back to life. You made me able to live again.”

I loved Mason! He was an absolute rock to Emma. He was the confidence she needed to learn to let go of whom she once was and be brave enough to JUST BE. Their moments together are poignant and beautiful and I loved them together. Of course, secrets are revealed and we learn about what REALLY happened the night of the accident. The end was heartbreaking and bittersweet and at the same time happy and hopeful.

Overall, Shelly did a great job with this book. It’s a fast read that manages to pack a lot of feeling. It has a troubled honesty that hooks you and keeps you reading! Definitely pick it up!

“The things we should focus on in any life shouldn’t be what we’ve lost, but what we’ve gained.”

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Excerpt

He smiled that Mason smile that set me on fire all over. Then he put one hand on the other side on the hospital bed and the other lifted toward my face. I waited, bated breath, gulping, sweaty palms, fluttering eyes, the works. His face got so close before he stopped. I thought he had decided against whatever he was doing he waited so long. I began to pull back in disappointment, but he reached behind my neck gently and pulled me to him. The barest of touches was the best way to describe our first kiss. It wasn’t really a kiss at all. His bottom lip barely brushed my top one. When he leaned back and opened his eyes, he must’ve seen the confusion and frustration in my face.

He chuckled. “I just had to taste that coconut…” he licked his lips, “but I don’t want to kiss you when you’ve been angry at me and I messed up our date.” He said ‘date’. Like…a date. “I want to kiss you when if we go another second without it, one of us will combust.”

My breaths were raging. I tried to calm myself. “I…” I failed.

“I want to give you back your first kiss, the one that jerk stole from you. And I want it to be something that even a coma can’t make you forget.”

About The Author

WP_20130123_049YA author from a small town in Georgia and loves everything about the south. She is wife to a fantastical husband and stay at home mom to two boisterous and mischievous boys who keep her on her toes. They currently reside in everywhere USA as they happily travel all over with her husband’s job. She loves to spend time with her family, binge on candy corn, go out to eat at new restaurants, buy paperbacks at little bookstores, site see in the new areas they travel to, listen to music everywhere and also LOVES to read.

Her own books happen by accident and she revels in the writing and imagination process. She doesn’t go anywhere without her notepad for fear of an idea creeping up and not being able to write it down immediately, even in the middle of the night, where her best ideas are born.

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