Saturday, October 26, 2013

Awoken, by Serra Elinsen

Rating: 4/5
310 pages
Publisher: Self Published

Description: In his house at R’lyeh, great Cthulhu lies dreaming... of her.

What would you do if you discovered you were the only one in the world with the hidden power to keep it from utter annihilation?

What if you had no idea what that power might even be?

Andromeda Slate, the self-proclaimed most ordinary girl in America, can’t figure out why the gorgeous but mysterious new boy at high school seems to hate her so much. It couldn't have anything to do with the strange dream she had the night before he first showed up in class, could it? The dream where the very same boy rescued her from a giant, green, tentacled sea monster?

And it couldn’t have anything to do with that time she read aloud from that ancient tome of eldritch magic, the Necronomicon... could it?

Andi Slate never imagined she’d find herself in a situation where somehow she was the key to saving the world.

Her life is about to get a whole lot less ordinary.
(From the back cover)

Review: I was torn on how to review this, but in the end, I really couldn't divorce myself from knowing the background details and read it straight.

I will state, for the record, that I suspect I would have loved this book, read straight, in middle school/early high school. An age where I was reading both YA romances and H.P. Lovecraft. I don't think you can get more spot on a target audience for this book. Also, I was a less critical reader back then, so lines like ""Sigh," I exhaled aloud." wouldn't have bothered me.

But I'm older, and that line caused me to laugh instead, because I knew this book was an affectionate parody of the Twilight type of paranormal romance. As such, I really enjoyed it and could appreciate the deliberate lack of research, the bad prose flourishes, and deal with the flat characters, creepy attitudes, and victim blaming as part of the genre they were parodying.

If you know there were actually eight authors involved, the fact its pretty cohesive is even more remarkable.

Overall, it was an enjoyable parody, but probably not one I'd be eager to reread, except maybe the parts with Uncle Neil.

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