A to Z Challenge Book Reviews

My Languishing TBR: W #AtoZChallenge2024 #Books #BookReviews

W is for Waking

Learn more about the challenge here.

I’m doing folklore and book review posts to reach and please a larger audience. Previous years have shown select interest in both and to minimise blogging throughout the year, I’m focusing my efforts on April.

Focusing on an A to Z of my TBR (to be read) list, each letter will have books starting with that letter on my list, a book I’ve read and reviewed (with the review!) and one of my books matching the letter with a link about more info about the book.

I chose the books this year quite randomly from my Goodreads Want to Read page. Some are quite creatively added to letters.

If you’d rather check out my folklore post for today, go here.

Learn more about the challenge here.

You can read reviews for from previous years for this letter here and here, and my year-end reviews here, here, here and, most recently, here.


About the Book I’ve Read

The Waking Forest by Alyssa Wees

The waking forest has secrets. To Rhea, it appears like a mirage, dark and dense, at the very edge of her backyard. But when she reaches out to touch it, the forest vanishes. She’s desperate to know more—until she finds a peculiar boy who offers to reveal its secrets. If she plays a game.

To the Witch, the forest is her home, where she sits on her throne of carved bone, waiting for dreaming children to beg her to grant their wishes. One night, a mysterious visitor arrives and asks her what she wishes for, but the Witch sends him away. And then the uninvited guest returns.

The strangers are just the beginning. Something is stirring in the forest, and when Rhea’s and the Witch’s paths collide, a truth more treacherous and deadly than either could ever imagine surfaces. But how much are they willing to risk to survive?

Check it out on Goodreads.

My Review

A complex story of how fear can stop us from doing what’s right and how our choices define us. The magic, the creatures, the world-building all intrigue. And when the revelation about the woods come… Everything neatly fits together and builds up to the dramatic end.

This story beautifully falls into that place between dark fantasy and horror, never quite committing to either, yet showcasing the best of both.

The language draws one in from the first page, keeping your interest while the connection with Rhea and the others build.

Though perhaps being a story about neurodiverse characters (OCD, anxiety, panic attacks, vivid hallucinations, drams that feel more real than reality, confusing reality with dreams, PTSD, etc.), I prefer the magical reasons for it all. It’s like an awesome Grimm fairy tale.

The italics in the “fairy tale” bothered me, as it is difficult for me to read. Publishers should take note of these things that affect the neurodivergent and make books accessible to all readers.

Gabrielle the fox is my favourite character; I like the gorgon and nymph and Manticore, too, but the fox is the highlight of the book.

Filled with heart-eating monsters, breathing darkness, and reality made from dreams, this book isn’t for the faint-hearted – but oh, so much fun to read.

Trigger warnings: sleepwalking, hallucinations about death and decay, OCD, anxiety, blood, gore, death, darkness (if you’re afraid of the dark, some scenes might be triggering for you), loss of a loved-one.

5 unicorn star rating

My Book

Water Fae (Origin of the Fae #4)

Remember that you can request all of my books from your local library!

I hope you enjoyed this. For more books I’ve read and reviewed, check out either my Pinterest board about reviews or my Goodreads profile. Alternatively, you can check out my reviews on BookBub. Have you read any of the books? Loved or hated any of them?

You can now support my time in producing book review posts (buying books, reading, writing reviews and everything else involved) by buying me a coffee. This can be a once-off thing, or you can buy me coffee again in the future at your discretion.

*FYI, my reviews are my honest opinion and if something bothers me, I tell it straight. How else will anything change? My opinions are based on being a voracious reader and book buyer, not an attack on the author.*

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