Wake (Watersong Series #1)

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Overview

“An amazing, enthralling story. . . ravishing and explosive.  Wake is awesome!” – Books with Bite

Enter the world of Amanda Hocking's Watersong, a place of breathtaking beauty, immortal power—and terrifying secrets.

Gemma Fisher seems to have it all—she’s carefree, pretty, and falling in love with Alex, the boy next door.  He’s always been just a friend, but this summer they’ve taken their relationship to the next level, and now she’s...

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Overview

“An amazing, enthralling story. . . ravishing and explosive.  Wake is awesome!” – Books with Bite

Enter the world of Amanda Hocking's Watersong, a place of breathtaking beauty, immortal power—and terrifying secrets.

Gemma Fisher seems to have it all—she’s carefree, pretty, and falling in love with Alex, the boy next door.  He’s always been just a friend, but this summer they’ve taken their relationship to the next level, and now she’s falling harder for him every day.  But Gemma doesn’t know that her ordinary life is about to change forever.

Penn, Lexi and Thea are strangers in town for the summer—and they’ve been watching her.  Three sisters with mysterious powers, they invite Gemma to join their exclusive circle, and it changes her in ways she never imagined.  Suddenly she’s stronger, faster, and more beautiful than ever. But her new powers come with a terrifying price.  And as she uncovers the truth, she’s is forced to choose between staying with those she loves—or entering a new world brimming with dark hungers and unimaginable secrets.

 

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The inaugural title in the four-book Watersong series by Hocking (the Trylle series) will please her fans and likely win her new ones. Sixteen-year-old Gemma Fisher is happy—she’s a star on the swim team, her family is loving and supportive, and the crush-worthy boy next door returns her interest. The only downside: three gorgeous but creepy new girls who have her in their sights. One night, Gemma is lured into joining the girls at a campfire by the water; she wakes up the next morning bruised and battered with no clear memories of what happened, but discovers she has supernatural healing abilities and is a far better swimmer than she realized. The girls tell Gemma stories of gods, goddesses, and curses that are actually blessings, but Gemma (rightly) suspects that some important information has been left out. While Hocking’s writing isn’t always polished (the foreshadowing can be painfully heavy), the well-structured story and strong characters carry readers over the rough spots. A cliffhanger ending sets up the next book, Lullaby, due six months later. Ages 12–up. Agent: Steven Axelrod, the Axelrod Agency. (Aug.)
VOYA - Barbara Johnston
Pretty sixteen-year-old Gemma loves the water, especially night-time swims in Anthemusa Bay. Three other young women also frequent the ocean cove, and Gemma sees and hears them partying around their bonfire. To Gemma's surprise, they court her company, but she and older sister Harper think these beautiful newcomers are strange. Gemma is definitely more interested in her romance with Alex. One night while Gemma swims, however, the girls' singing lures and ensnares her. Harper searches for the missing Gemma and discovers her disoriented on the beach. The potion Gemma reluctantly swallowed has transformed her into a siren (part woman, part fish) with eternal life, beauty, and seductive powers but no real love. The sirens reveal that their necessity for mortal blood is behind the recent killings and exhibit their third transformation into a grotesque human/sparrow. If Gemma denies their invitation, she will die. As Gemma swims away with them, Harper vows to break the sirens' spell. From the prologue where the three sirens are "fresh from eating" and the ocean is singing its "watersong," dramatic word pictures will tantalize readers into devouring this book. The human characters are likeable, and the interactions between Gemma and Harper (sisterly disagreements and concern) and Gemma and Alex (sweet romance) are realistic. Plot tension escalates steadily as the sirens ramp up their repulsiveness and Gemma resists joining them. A surreal battle scene adds excitement. Make room, vampires, because the sirens and this Watersong series have sharp teeth. Reviewer: Barbara Johnston
Kirkus Reviews
In self-publishing phenom Hocking's (Ascend, 2012) disappointing foray into new paranormal territory, one night of partying on the beach leaves 16-year-old Gemma with more than a hangover. When the initial fog of her late night at the cove with a trio of sirens (more frequently, and unimaginatively, referred to as "weird pretty girls") wears off, Gemma discovers that she is stronger, faster and more beautiful than ever. (Readers might have found this transformation more compelling if Gemma weren't already strong and beautiful, also graceful and endowed with honey-colored eyes.) Now she just has to choose between the life she loves and the lure of her newfound mythical powers. The question is, will readers care? The "should I stay or should I go" tension at the heart of the story would be a lot more effective if the ties that bind Gemma's broken family together were more fully developed. Her father is practically nonexistent. Her mother, mentally impaired and incapable of taking care of anyone, including herself, lives in an assisted-care facility. The only constant is Gemma's older sister Harper, whose need to look out for her feels more like an obsessive yearning for control than real emotion. In the end, it's secondary characters, like the girls' love interests, who will sustain readers determined to make it to the final page. Whether they'll feel motivated to pick up the next three books is anyone's guess. (Paranormal romance. 14-18)
From the Publisher
Praise for Amanda Hocking and the Watersong Series:

“[Wake] will please fans and likely win new ones…the well-structured story and strong characters carry readers.” –Publishers Weekly

“Filled with mysteries, realistic characters and lots of action…Wake is the next great book. A worthwhile read.” – RT BOOKREVIEWS

“Hocking’s novel effectively melds myth and contemporary teen life. High school, family, young love, and mythology all combine to create an easy-to-read paranormal suspense story that will have fans eagerly awaiting new installments.” – Booklist

“Explosive and interesting… a nice, smooth story with unique mythology and lovable characters. I thoroughly enjoyed it.” – The Teen Bookworm

“Pure imaginative brilliance! Wake is full of thrills, eerie suspense and mystery… incredibly difficult to put down.” –The Book Faery

“…real and vibrant. A brand new series that reawakens everything we love in underwater mythology, Wake by Amanda Hocking will certainly leave you with the desire to pick up more of her titles.” – A Cupcake and a Latte

“An amazing story. . . ravishing yet explosive . I am enthralled with the amazing characters and fast-pace plotline. The thrill of the water, the history that propels the reader deeper, Wake is awesome!” – Books with Bite

“Entertaining and surprisingly dark. Amanda Hocking once again had me enjoying her writing and the world she created before my eyes.” – Millie D’s Words

“A wonderfully adventurous and dynamic series, full of high intrigue, mythology, paranormal lore, romance, and suspense. I, for one, can't wait to be swept away in the new world of the Watersong.”—Fallen Angel Reviews

“Amanda Hocking once again delves into the fantasies of many young minds and the results are something new and different.” –The Reading Cafe

Wake is an exciting new beginning to a much anticipated series.” –Boekie’s Book Reviews

“Amanda Hocking has such an easy and elegant way with her language - her stories just seem to flow well and her words dance. This is going to be another series that I'll fall for. I absolutely cannot wait to see where she takes us with the next book.” – Into the Hall of Books

“Great chemistry … plus a family history that just makes your heart ache and you’ve definitely got a recipe for a fantastic new series. It only took me a couple of days to read this, and I am … anxious for the next book to come out next year. Get your hands on this now!”—YA Book Central

“A great start to the series and I definitely want to read more, and soon!” –A Book in Hand

“There is no denying that Amanda Hocking knows how to tell a good story and keep readers coming back for more.  More is exactly what they will be looking for once they’ve turned the last page.” –Kirkus Reviews

“Hocking hits all the commercial high notes… She knows how to keep readers turning the pages.” –New York Times Book Review

“Amanda Hocking has a gift for storytelling that will grip readers and keep them wanting more…Entrancing.” –Library Thing

“A breath of fresh air in the young adult paranormal market.” –That Bookish Girl Blog

“Amanda Hocking is an author whose storytelling skills keep getting better and better." –Bewitched Bookworms

“Amanda Hocking surpasses all expectations...” –Smart Bookworms

School Library Journal
Gr 7–10—Gemma loves the water. She's on the swim team, and even when she's not swimming for sport, she's floating in Anthemusa Bay late at night, enjoying the peace, the quiet, and the magical feeling of the endless ocean. Her family doesn't understand. Her father lets her go-as long as she's home by curfew-but Harper, her overprotective older sister, worries way too much. Harper fears things like drowning and kidnappers, while what she should really worry about are the four beautiful girls who arrived in their small coastal town of Capri just before tourist season started. Teenagers begin to disappear in nearby towns. Harper should question why there are now only three of the unearthly beauties, and she should be terrified that they've taken an interest in Gemma. This first in a projected quartet is a paranormal romantic thriller based on mythological creatures-sirens. It's sure to capture readers' interest with its tightly woven plot, descriptive writing, and realistic characters. While not really a mystery, there are unknown elements that will keep readers guessing and riveted to every page right up to the end. Order extra copies of this novel, because it won't stay on your shelves long.Heather Miller Cover, Homewood Public Library, AL
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781250008121
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 8/7/2012
  • Series: Watersong Series , #1
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 254,194
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Lexile: HL710L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.82 (w) x 8.44 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Amanda Hocking

AMANDA HOCKING is the author of the New York Times bestselling Trylle trilogy and six additional self-published novels. She made international headlines by selling over a million copies of her self-published books, primarily in eBook format.  She lives in Minnesota, where she’s at work on the next book in the Watersong series.

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Read an Excerpt


Prologue

Ours

Even over the sea, Thea could smell the blood on her. When she breathed in, it filled her with a familiar hunger that haunted her dreams. Except now it disgusted her, leaving a horrible taste in her mouth, because she knew where it came from.

"Is it done?" she asked. She stood on the rocky shore, staring over the sea, with her back to her sister.

"You know it is," Penn said. Although Penn was angry, her voice still kept its seductive edge, that alluring texture she could never completely erase. "No thanks to you."

Thea glanced back over her shoulder at Penn. Even in the dull light of the moon, Penn's black hair glistened, and her tanned skin seemed to glow. Fresh from eating, she looked even more beautiful than she had a few hours before.

A few droplets of blood splattered Thea's clothes, but Penn had mostly been spared from it, except for her right hand. It was stained crimson up to her elbow.

Thea's stomach rolled with both hunger and disgust, and she turned away again.

"Thea." Penn sighed and walked over to her. "You know it had to be done."

Thea didn't say anything for a moment. She just listened to the way the ocean sang to her, the watersong calling for her.

"I know," Thea said finally, hoping her words didn't betray her true feelings. "But the timing is awful. We should've waited."

"I couldn't wait anymore," Penn insisted, and Thea wasn't sure if that was true or not. But Penn had made a decision, and Penn always got what she wanted.

"We don't have much time." Thea gestured to the moon, nearly full above them, then looked over at Penn.

"I know. But I already told you, I've had my eye on someone." Penn smiled widely at her, showing her razor-sharp teeth. "And it won't be long before she's ours."

One

Midnight Swim

The engine made a bizarre chugging sound, like a dying robot llama, followed by an innocuous click-click. Then silence. Gemma turned the key harder, hoping that would somehow breathe life into the old Chevy, but it wouldn't even chug anymore. The llama had died.

"You have got to be kidding me," Gemma said and cursed under her breath.

She'd worked her butt off to pay for this car. Between the long hours she spent training at the pool and keeping up on her schoolwork, she had little time for a steady job. That had left her stuck babysitting the horrible Tennenmeyer boys. They put gum in her hair and poured bleach on her favorite sweater.

But she'd toughed it out. Gemma had been determined to get a car when she turned sixteen, even if that meant dealing with the Tennenmeyers. Her older sister Harper had gotten their father's old car as a hand-me-down. Harper had offered to let Gemma drive it, but she declined.

Mainly, Gemma needed her own car because neither Harper nor her father readily approved of her late-night swims at Anthemusa Bay. They didn't live far from the bay, but the distance wasn't what bothered her family. It was the late-night partÑand that was the thing that Gemma craved most.

Out there, under the stars, the water seemed like it went on forever. The bay met the sea, which in turn met the sky, and it all blended together like she was floating in an eternal loop. There was something magical about the bay at night, something that her family couldn't seem to understand.

Gemma tried the key one more time, but it only elicited the same empty clicking sound from her car. Sighing, she leaned forward and stared out at the moonlit sky through the cracked windshield. It was getting late, and even if she left on foot right now, she wouldn't get back from her swim until almost midnight.

That wouldn't be a huge problem, but her curfew was eleven. Starting off the summer being grounded on top of having a dead car was the last thing she wanted. Her swim would have to wait for another night.

She got out of the car. When she tried to slam the door shut in frustration, it only groaned, and a chunk of rust fell off the bottom.

"This is by far the worst three hundred dollars I ever spent," Gemma muttered.

"Car trouble?" Alex asked from behind her, startling her so much she nearly screamed. "Sorry. I didn't mean to scare you."

"No, it's okay." She waved it off and turned around to face him. "I didn't hear you come out."

Alex had lived next door to them for the past ten years, and there was nothing scary about him. As he got older, he'd tried to smooth out his unruly dark hair, but a lock near the front always stood up, a cowlick he could never tame. It made him look younger than eighteen, and when he smiled, he looked younger still.

There was something innocent about him, and that was probably why Harper had never thought of him as anything more than a friend. Even Gemma had dismissed him as uncrushworthy until recently. She'd seen the subtle changes in him, his youthfulness giving way to broad shoulders and strong arms.

It was that new thing, the new manliness he was beginning to grow into, that made her stomach flutter when Alex smiled at her. She still wasn't used to feeling that way around him, so she pushed it down and tried to ignore it.

"The stupid piece of junk won't run." Gemma gestured to the rusty compact and stepped over to where Alex stood on his lawn. "I've only had it for three months, and its dead already."

"I'm sorry to hear that," Alex said. "Do you need help?"

"You know something about cars?" Gemma raised an eyebrow. She had seen him spend plenty of time playing video games or with his nose stuck in a book, but she'd never once seen him under the hood of a car.

Alex smiled sheepishly and lowered his eyes. He had been blessed with tan skin, which made it easier for him to hide his embarrassment, but Gemma knew him well enough to understand that he blushed at almost anything.

"No," he admitted with a small laugh and motioned back to the driveway where his blue Mercury Cougar sat. "But I do have a car of my own."

He pulled his keys out of his pocket and swung them around his finger. For a moment he managed to look slick before the keys flew off his hand and hit him in the chin. Gemma stifled a laugh as he scrambled to pick them up.

"You okay?"

"Uh, yeah, I'm fine." He rubbed his chin and shrugged it off. "So, do you want a ride?"

"Are you sure? It's pretty late. I don't want to bother you."

"Nah, it's no bother." He stepped back toward his car, waiting for Gemma to follow. "Where are you headed?"

"Just to the bay."

"I should've known." He grinned. "Your nightly swim?"

"It's not nightly," Gemma said, though he wasn't too far off base.

"Come on." Alex walked over to the Cougar and opened his door. "Hop in."

"All right, if you insist."

Gemma didn't like imposing on people, but she didn't want to pass up a chance at swimming. A car ride alone with Alex wouldn't hurt, either. Usually she only got to spend time with him when he was hanging out with her sister.

"So what is it about these swims that you find so entrancing?" Alex asked after she'd gotten in the car.

"I don't think I'd ever describe them as entrancing." She buckled up her seat belt, then leaned back. "I don't know what it is exactly. There's just...nothing else like it."

"What do you mean?" Alex asked. He'd started the car, but stayed parked in the driveway, watching her as she tried to explain.

"During the day there are so many people at the bay, especially during the summer, but at night...it's just you and the water and the stars. And it's dark, so it all feels like one thing, and you're part of it all." She furrowed her brow, but her smile was wistful. "I guess it is kind of a entrancing," she admitted. She shook her head, clearing it of the thought. "I don't know. Maybe I'm just a freak who likes swimming at night."

That was when Gemma realized Alex was staring at her, and she glanced over at him. He had a strange expression on his face, almost like he was dumbfounded.

"What?" Gemma asked, beginning to feel embarrassed at the way he looked at her. She fidgeted with her hair, tucking it behind her ears, and shifted in her seat.

"Nothing. Sorry." Alex shook his head and put the car in drive. "You probably want to get out to the water."

"I'm not in a huge rush or anything," Gemma said, but that was sort of a lie. She wanted to get as much time in the water as she could before her curfew.

"Are you still training?" Alex asked. "Or did you stop for summer vacation?"

"Nope, I still train." She rolled down the car window, letting the salty air blow in. "I swim every day at the pool with the coach. He says my times are getting really good."

"At the pool you swim all day, and then you want to sneak out and swim all night?" Alex smirked. "How does that work?"

"It's different." She stuck her arm out the open window, holding it straight like the wing of a plane. "Swimming at the pool, it's all laps and time. It's work. Out in the bay, it's just floating and splashing around."

"But don't you ever get sick of being wet?" Alex asked.

"Nope." She shook her head. "That's like asking you, Don't you ever get sick of breathing air?"

"As a matter of fact, I do. Sometimes I think, Wouldn't it be grand if I didn't need to breathe?"

"Why?" Gemma laughed. "Why would that ever be grand?"

"I don't know." He looked self-conscious for a minute, his smile twisting nervously. "I guess I mostly thought it when I was in gym class and they'd make me run or something. I was always so out of breath."

Alex glanced over at her, as if checking to see if she thought he was a complete loser for that admission. But she only smiled at him in response.

"You should've spent more time swimming with me," Gemma said. "Then you wouldn't have been so out of shape."

"I know, but I'm a geek." He sighed. "At least I'm done with all that gym stuff now that I graduated."

"Soon you'll be so busy at college, you won't even remember the horrors of high school," Gemma said, her tone turning curiously despondent.

"Yeah, I guess." Alex furrowed his brow.

Gemma leaned closer to the window, hanging her arm down the side and resting her chin on her hand as she stared out at houses and trees passing by. In her and Alex's neighborhood, the houses were all cheap and run-down, but as soon as they passed Capri Lane, everything was clean and modern.

Since it was tourist season, all the buildings and trees were lit up brightly. Music from the bars and the sounds of people talking and laughing wafted in through the air.

"Are you excited to get away from all this?" Gemma asked with a wry smile and pointed to a drunken couple arguing on the boulevard.

"There is some stuff I'll be glad to get away from," he admitted, but when he looked over at her, his expression softened. "But there will definitely be some things that I miss."

The beach was mostly deserted, other than a few teenagers having a bonfire, and Gemma directed Alex to drive a little farther. The soft sand gave way to more jagged rocks lining the shore, and the paved parking lots were replaced by a forest of bald cypress trees. He parked on a dirt road as close to the water as he could get.

This far away from the tourist attractions, there were no people or trails leading to the water. When Alex cut the lights on the Cougar, they were submerged in darkness. The only light came from the moon above them, and some light pollution cast off by the town.

"Is this really where you swim?" Alex asked.

"Yeah. It's the best place to do it." She shrugged and opened the door.

"But it's all rocky." Alex got out of the car and scanned the mossy stones that covered the ground. "It seems dangerous."

"That's the point." Gemma grinned. "Nobody else would swim here."

As soon as she got out of the car, she slipped off her sundress, revealing the bathing suit she wore underneath. Her dark hair had been in a ponytail, but she pulled it down, shaking it loose. She kicked off her flip-flops and tossed them in the car, along with her dress.

Alex stood next to the car, shoving his hands deep in his pockets, and tried not to look at her. He knew she was wearing a bathing suit, one he'd seen her in a hundred times before. Gemma practically lived in swimwear. But alone with her like this, he felt acutely aware of how she looked in the bikini.

Of the two Fisher sisters, Gemma was definitely the prettier. She had a lithe swimmer's body, petite and slender, but curved in all the right places. Her skin was bronze from the sun, and her dark hair had golden highlights running through it from all the chlorine and sunlight. Her eyes were honey, not that he could really see the color in the dim light, but they sparkled when she smiled at him.

"Aren't you going swimming?" Gemma asked.

"Uh, no." He shook his head and deliberately stared off at the bay to avoid looking at her. "I'm good. I'll wait in the car until you're done."

"No, you drove me all the way down here. You can't just wait in the car. You have to come swimming with me."

"Nah, I think I'm okay." He scratched his arm and lowered his eyes. "You go have fun."

"Alex, come on." Gemma pretended to pout. "I bet you've never even gone for a swim in the moonlight. And you're leaving for college at the end of the summer. You have to do this at least once, or you haven't really lived."

"I don't have swim trunks," Alex said, but his resistance was already waning.

"Just wear your boxers."

He thought about protesting further, but Gemma had a point. She was always doing stuff like this, but he'd spent most of his high school career in his bedroom.

Besides, swimming would be better than waiting. And when he thought about it, it was much less creepy joining her swimming than watching her from the shore.

"Fine, but I better not cut my feet on any of the rocks," Alex said as he slipped off his shoes.

"I promise to keep you safe and sound." She crossed her hand over her heart to prove it.

"I'll hold you to that."

He pulled his shirt up over his head, and it was exactly as Gemma had imagined. His gangly frame had filled out with toned muscles that she didn't completely understand, since he was a self-professed geek.

When he started to undo his pants, Gemma turned away to be polite. Even though she would see him in his boxers in a few seconds, it felt strange watching him take off his jeans. As if it were dirty.

"So how do we get down to the water?" Alex asked.

"Very carefully."

She went first, stepping delicately onto the rocks, and he knew he wouldn't stand a chance of copying her grace. She moved like a ballerina, stepping on the balls of her feet from one smooth rock to the next until she reached the water.

"There are a few sharp stones when you step in the water," Gemma warned him.

"Thanks for the heads-up," he mumbled and moved with as much caution as he could. Following her path, which she'd made look so easy, proved to be rather treacherous, and he stumbled several times.

"Don't rush it! You'll be fine if you go slow."

"I'm trying."

To his own surprise, he managed to make it to the water without slicing open his foot. When he reached the water, Gemma smiled proudly at him as she waded out deeper into the bay.

"Aren't you scared?" Alex asked.

"Of what?" She'd gone far enough into the water to lean back and swim, kicking her legs out in front of her.

"I don't know. Sea monsters or something. The water is so dark. You can't see anything." Alex was now in a little over waist-deep, and truthfully, he didn't want to go any farther.

"There's no sea monsters." Gemma laughed and splashed water at him. To encourage him to have fun, she decided to challenge him. "I'll race you to the rock over there."

"What rock?"

"That one." She pointed to a giant gray spike of a rock that stuck out of the water a few yards from where they swam.

"You'll beat me to it," he said.

"I'll give you a head start," Gemma offered.

"How much?"

"Um...five seconds."

"Five seconds?" Alex seemed to weigh this. "I guess maybe I couldÑ" Instead of finishing his thought, he dove into the water, swimming fast.

"I'm already giving you a head start!" Gemma called after him, laughing. "You don't need to cheat!"

Alex swam as furiously as he could, but it wasn't long before Gemma was flying past him. She was unstoppable in the water, and he'd honestly never seen anything faster than her. In the past, he'd gone with Harper to swim meets at the school, and there had rarely been one that Gemma didn't win.

"I won!" Gemma declared when she reached the rock.

"As if there was ever any doubt." Alex swam up next to her and hung on to the rock to support himself. His breath was still short, and he wiped the salty water from his eyes. "That was hardly a fair fight."

"Sorry." She smiled. Gemma wasn't anywhere near as winded as Alex was, but she leaned onto the rock next to him.

"For some reason, I don't think you really mean that," Alex said in mock offense.

His hand slipped off the rock, and when he reached out to steady himself again, he accidentally put his hand over Gemma's. His first instinct was to pull it back in some kind of hasty embarrassment, but the second before he did, he changed his mind.

Alex let his hand linger over hers, both of them cool and wet. Her smile had changed, turning into something fonder, and for a moment neither of them said anything. They hung on to the rock like that for a moment longer, the only sound the water lapping around them.

Gemma would've been content to sit with Alex like that, but light exploded in the cove behind him, distracting her. The small cove was at the mouth of the bay, just before it met the ocean, about a quarter mile from where Gemma and Alex floated.

Alex followed her gaze. A moment later, laughter sounded over the water and he pulled his hand away from hers.

A fire flared inside the cove, the light flickering across the three dancing figures that fanned it. From this far away, it was difficult to get a clear view of what they were doing, but it was obvious who they were by the way they moved. Everyone in town knew of them, even if nobody really seemed to know them personally.

"It's those girls," Alex saidÑsoftly, as if the girls would overhear him from the cove.

The three girls were dancing with elegance and grace. Even their shadows, looming on the rock walls around them, seemed sensual in their movements.

"What are they doing out here?" Alex asked.

"I don't know." She shrugged, continuing to stare at them, unabashed. "They've been coming out here more and more. They seem to like hanging out in that cove."

"Huh," Alex said. She looked back at him and saw his brow furrowed in thought.

"I don't even know what they're doing in town."

"Me neither." He looked over his shoulder to watch them again. "Somebody told me they were Canadian movie stars."

"Maybe. But they don't have accents."

"You've heard them talk?" Alex asked, sounding impressed.

"Yeah, I've seen them at Pearl's Diner across from the library. They always order milk shakes."

"Didn't there used to be four of them?"

"Yeah, I think so." Gemma squinted, trying to be sure she was counting right. "Last time I saw them out here, there were four. But now there's only three."

"I wonder where the other one went."

Gemma and Alex were too far away to understand them clearly, but they were talking and laughing, their voices floating over the bay. One of the girls began singingÑher voice clear as crystal, and so sweet it almost hurt to hear. The melody pulled at Gemma's heart.

Alex's jaw dropped, and he gaped at them. He moved away from the rock, floating slowly toward them, but Gemma barely even noticed. Her focus was on the girls. Or, more accurately, on the one girl who wasn't singing.

Penn. Gemma was sure of it, just by the way Penn moved away from the two girls. Her long black hair hung down behind her, and the wind blew it back. She walked with startling grace and purpose, her eyes straight ahead.

From this distance in the dark, Penn shouldn't have noticed her, but Gemma could feel her eyes boring straight through her, sending chills down her spine.

"Alex," Gemma said in a voice that barely sounded like her own. "I think we should go."

"What?" Alex replied dazedly, and that was when Gemma realized how far he'd swum away from her.

"Alex, come on. I think we're bothering them. We should go."

"Go?" He turned back to her, sounding confused by the idea.

"Alex!" Gemma said, nearly shouting now, but at least that seemed to get through to him. "We need to get back. It's late."

"Oh, right." He shook his head, clearing it, and then swam back toward the shore.

When Gemma was convinced he was back to normal, she followed him.

Penn, Thea, Lexi, and Arista had been in town since the weather started warming up, and people assumed they were the first tourists of the season. But nobody really knew exactly who they were or what they were doing here.

All Gemma knew was that she hated it when they came out here. It disrupted her night swims. She didn't feel comfortable being in the water, not when they were out in the cove, dancing and singing and doing whatever it was they did.

 

 

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Interviews & Essays

A Q&A with Amanda Hocking

1. WAKE takes place in a [fictional] beach town called Capri, in Maryland. What inspired the setting? Will readers be reminded of the famous Italian island that shares the same name?

The location is based on a couple different places. The scenery and the bay are a combination of the Tyrrhenian Sea and islands around it, as well as taking Grecian inspiration, especially in terms of the names of places inside Capri.

Maryland itself was definitely a huge inspiration. I watched a documentary set there, and I thought it was one of the most beautiful places I'd ever seen. It just had this really lush, green quality to it, and of course, it has a wonderful coastline along the ocean.

2. Do you like to swim, like Gemma? How else is Gemma similar to you, or not?

I do love to swim, though I'm certainly not as fast or as disciplined as Gemma. Unlike Gemma, I don't really enjoy swimming in lakes or the ocean, and I would never, ever swim in the ocean after dark. I have a distinct fear that sea monsters are going to come up and eat me if I can't see the bottom when I'm in water.

3. Harper and Gemma's relationship is one of the most important in the book. What inspired you to write about two sisters dealing with something seriously mysterious?

The dynamic between girls - especially teenage girls - is incredibly complicated and interesting by itself, and I think adding in the sister aspect makes it even more so. So for me, in a big way, the central focus of the book was always on girls and their various relationships with one another - and also with boys, of course. I thought it would be fun to write about sisters tangling with an entirely different set of sisters.

Favorite places to read

1. In bed. I usually plan to read a book for a half-hour before bed, but then I end up staying awake until 3 am to finish it. Fortunately, my dog doesn't mind when I keep the bedside lamp on.

2. On my porch. I have a screened in porch, and it's nice to curl up with a book outside when it's raining, especially an old battered classic like Pride & Prejudice & Zombies.

3. In the bathtub. This is a new one to me. I'd never been much for reading for in tubs out of fear of soaking my books, but so far, I've had had a lot of success.

4. In hotels. Travelling is a great time to catch up on my reading. It's hard falling asleep in new places, but a good book always makes it easier.

5. Pretty much anywhere but never, ever in moving vehicles. I have horrible motion sickness that leads to headaches and nausea if I read so much as a tweet.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 257 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(130)

4 Star

(54)

3 Star

(34)

2 Star

(12)

1 Star

(27)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 257 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 7, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Wake is an exquisite and intense introduction to Amanda Hocking'

    Wake is an exquisite and intense introduction to Amanda Hocking's new series, Watersong! Amanda has already proved she's mastered the art of original storytelling in her unforgettable Trylle Trilogy, and the trend continues in Watersong.

    Wake is written in third person perspective, more prominently switching between sisters Gemma and Harper Fisher, throughout the whole novel. The style gives readers the opportunity to see beneath the surface of both sisters as they dance around danger in the form of three beautiful strangers. Penn, Lexi, and Thea are the epitome of evil and it's quite easy to hate them. They ruinously burst into Gemma's life and hometown, Capri, without any regret for the trouble they cause.

    Amanda keeps the mystery rolling throughout the novel. Even when the truth comes out about what Gemma becomes and what Penn, Lexi, and Thea want with her, the puzzle still isn't complete. The characters are mostly kept in the dark and it's interesting that they have gut instincts about the danger that surrounds them, but they never actively do anything about it until it's too late. Gemma finally tries to take a stand against Penn, Lexi, and Thea, and the strength she keeps under wraps peeks through. The scenes where Gemma, or even Harper, speak up and make their suspicions known are heart-pounding and just plain awesome!

    Wake is graced with not one, but two love interests. For Gemma, it's Alex, the sweet, geeky boy next door who is so unlike Amanda's usual male leads. Harper, on the other hand, is blessed with a love-hate relationship with slacker Daniel, who is much more like the usual male lead in teen fiction. Gemma and Harper are complete opposites so it's no surprise that their love interests would be as well.

    The vow that Wake ends with is enough to wish for Lullaby, book two of the Watersong series to get here a little faster! Amanda will no doubt push the story past its limits in surprises and action.

    Originally posted on Lovey Dovey Books
    *ARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review*

    33 out of 43 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 12, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Chapter by Chapter's review of Wake by Amanda Hocking

    When I first looked at Wake by Amanda Hocking, I was pretty sure that the story would be interesting considering what the cover looked like. I know, I know, you shouldn’t judge a book by its’ cover, but when it looks like that you can’t really blame me. However, once I read the synopsis the story had my attention completely. Lately, I’ve found myself a huge fan of mermaid novels—but this one story was absolutely nothing like what I expected… it was better!

    The novel is about main character Gemma who is a powerful swimmer who is beginning to fall in love with her childhood friend Alex. Three new girls enter town…they’re beautiful and hold an age-old secret that is far more dangerous than the reader can imagine when first entering the story. One thing that was interesting about the novel was that it had two stories inside of one. There’s the story of Gemma and her transition from normal girl to a gorgeous siren, and the story of her older sister Harper who worries for her sister and how her life is affected by the entrance of the sirens. Don’t deny it, guys. That sounds pretty freaking awesome and you know it.

    Wake was a thrilling read. It started off a bit on the slow side, but it was written in such a captivating way that I was compelled to continue reading. I couldn’t stop even if I wanted to. I had to know what would happen next and if I wanted to stop, my brain would say “One more chapter… Or maybe three” because it was just that good. When it came to the topic of the sirens and their existence, I was frightened at the depth of the mythology behind them, especially since it involved Greek mythology and held a story that was both tragic and magical. Plus ‘the curse’ that all the sirens have, stuck with the mythology and held properties that were dark and frightening.

    I loved the romance in Wake. Either it was the full out relationship between Gemma and Alex, or the cute flirting between Harper and Daniel. The romance and interaction between characters is unparalleled to anything I’ve ever read before. When it came to Gemma and Alex, I hated knowing that because of Gemma now being a siren she could never truly love because nobody would truly love her ever again. When it came to the plot, I was shocked at the amount of creepy twists and turns that kept me interested in the novel—well that and the series of murders.

    I would recommend Wake to fans of mermaid lore, Greek mythology, YA romance and fans of Amanda Hocking’s other works. A fun read that started with a bang and ended with one too.

    21 out of 30 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2012

    Not good

    This was terribly disappointing. So glad I'd read the Kirkus review and went with the library for this. Nonentity of a main character. And stupid. If you were told details of the Greek curse ruining your life, wouldn't you at least try the library? The sister is such an unimaginative stock character - overprotective in-lieu-of-mother sister. Hocking does manage to make her more annoying than most. I can only hope this is the author's punk rock nose thumb at mainstream publishing. But I doubt it and I won't be returning to the series.

    16 out of 35 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2012

    Wake

    This book is such an amazing book!!! I read it in a day, Wake is very clever i guess u could say and it will keep you at your feet!!!!

    12 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 5, 2012

    Good book!

    I decided to read this book because I loved Amanda Hocking's other series. I was immediately intrigued by this book after I started reading. This book along with her other books have a different twist on the paranormal world. She writes stories that you don't see very often. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to read something a little different. I could not put it down once I started it. And I can't wait for the next book in the series to come out.

    11 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 29, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    This is a YA or Young Adult novel. It's also the first in the Wa

    This is a YA or Young Adult novel. It's also the first in the Watersong trilogy.

    The teaser for this book is really what caught my interest. A supernatural creature book that wasn't teenager vampires, werewolves, or witches. I won't spoil it, but I was pretty sure I knew what the creatures were, and I was right.
    I expected more from this book. It was disappointing to me. I have read several other YA supernatural stories, and not all from authors I love. This one lacked the essential balance between the normal human world and supernatural world. Ninety percent of this tale felt like I reading a normal teen type story, nothing out of the ordinary. The balance doesn't have to be fifty-fifty but does need enough supernatural stuff in it to move the story along into the paranormal.
    Beside this, I had a few issues with the story. Things that seemed to not fit, and make the story a bit more sluggish. For one, I have no problem with an omnipotent narrator, but what is wrong with saying her Dad left for work, instead of Brian left for work. It took me a few times before I adjusted to using his name instead of Dad or father. It was a little confusing at first.
    Secondly, your a creature that has lived for centuries and you can't risk being discovered, but you can't dispose of a dead body? Thirdly: What was the purpose of having the brain injured mother in the book? To me her character just wasn't needed. A simple sentence or two could have filled in necessary facts. Number four: Teenagers have gone missing and you let your child go out alone after dark. Finally, number five: Why would any adult let their daughter going swimming, not only alone, but at night, in the bay, where she could drown, or get attacked by a shark? Seriously? I know he feels guilty about not being around as much as he is needed, and about Gemma, not having a Mom, but there is a difference in being a responsible adult, and being a little too hands off.
    This story could have been so much more, but in my opinion, fell way short of the mark. A few changes to the story and it could have been a much better teen tale, without anything paranormal in it. I will not be reading the other books.

    8 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 9, 2012

    Wake

    Good ending. Cliffhanger for sure. More mystical mess. Teen message.. be careful what you wish for...... teenage curiosty will get you into trouble

    8 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2012

    Just Pre Ordered

    I read the description and it sounded like another one of Amanda Hockings mysterious novels. I can't wait for August 7th to come!!!

    8 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2013

    Great....lovely...AMAZING!!!!!!

    This book was a great book. You will love this no matter how many times you read it. There are only a couple morbid and disturbing parts. Almost every review has nothing to do with the morbid parts. But I'm going to tell you the truth... it is an amazing book..truly. But this was an unatural, evil, and disturbing book at times. But you will love it but dont get to creeped out at the parts. ENJOY THE BOOK!! I am telling the truth...READ THIS BOOK!!!!!!!! You will love it!!!!

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2013

    I love this book!

    Wake is an amazing book. I could not stop reading it. Amanda Hocking has an open mind and a great imagination. Every page is better and is filled with more suspense than the previous. I give five stars!

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2013

    Beware!!!!!!! A waste of time and money!!!!!

    I am so disappointed. I enjoyed the Trylle Trilogy and hoped to enjoy this book as well. The writing and story was very immature. The book is definitley geared toward younger teens. The writing seemed "dumbed down." I very rarely give a book a bad review, but this one was just that bad. I have no idea why there are so many positive reviews and I wanted to put mine out there to help someone else not waste their money.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2012

    Love this book!

    Wow, this book was great. I dont know how i will be able to wait for the next one!

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2013

    My apologies to all of those who enjoyed this book, but I just c

    My apologies to all of those who enjoyed this book, but I just can't recommend it. Gemma and Harper are the flattest characters I've seen in some time-- always on one note. The villains are a bit better, but when you don't care that the main character is in danger, even great villains can't save a book. I found myself skimming after a while, and that irritated me, because I bought this book (based on the customer reviews, in fact) and my book budget is pretty tight.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 15, 2013

    **2 Stars** MY OVERVIEW: I had such high expectations for this

    **2 Stars**

    MY OVERVIEW: I had such high expectations for this book upon reading the synopsis. I have also heard great things about the author. However, I was very disappointed with Wake. 

    PROS: I liked Harper and Daniel’s relationship and how it changed through the book and the experiences they went through. 

    CONS: Gemma was annoying. She also wasn’t a believable character. There are three girls that creep her out and yet she goes to hang out with them. Then, once they tell her that she is a Siren, Gemma is all, “Ok, cool – wait, no I don’t want to be one.” There isn’t ever a point where she doesn’t believe they exist and that it is not possible. I also felt like it was set up for something bigger to happen with Daniel, but it didn’t. 

    MY FINAL THOUGHTS: The book just fell flat. I don’t plan on reading the rest of the series, however I will pick up another book by this author. 

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2013

    This book was just okay. I can't exactly put my finger on it, bu

    This book was just okay. I can't exactly put my finger on it, but I felt that it was missing something. Almost like she skimmed the surface of the story without delving into the emotions of the characters enough. Unlike Amanda's other books, this one was easy to put down and I did so several times. I read two other books while trying to finish this one. Don't get me wrong, the story is adequate, but it just didn't grab me in the way some of her other books did. Not sure that I'll be picking up the second book in the series.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2013

    Eck

    This book is not the best it just seems like something is missing. I liked the idea with the sirens but it was lacking it could have been better.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2012

    AMAZING!

    Best book ever!!!!!!!!!!

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2012

    Loved it

    I could not put it down can't wait for the next one!!!!!! :D

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2012

    different

    Not the normal vampire and werewolf story and different from the average mermaid tale. However it lacks suspense and more action wuchbis a must for any sci fi fantasy book.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 7, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    “Wake” by, Amanda Hocking Gemma and Harper Fisher

    “Wake” by, Amanda Hocking

    Gemma and Harper Fisher are pretty average teenage girls whose lives have been a bit rough. Gemma loves the water and has hopes of making the Olympic swimming team when she’s older. Harper is very responsible and helped her dad raise Gemma after their mother’s mind was damaged in a car accident. Things are pretty normal for the sisters until three strange girls show up in town. Penn, Lexi, and Thea are presumed to be tourists who are in town for the season but they are hiding a dark secret.

    “Wake” was a pretty interesting story and was a nice change from some of the other teen books out there. That being said, I did feel that the characters were a little flat. I thought that Penn, Lexi, and Thea had some good back story but something was missing that I can’t quite put my finger on. My favorite character was Daniel, Harper’s love interest, and I hope that book two tells us more about him. (On a side note I did find it weird that the sisters referred to their dad as Brian instead of Dad throughout the book.) I think the series has a lot of potential and I am planning on picking up book two. My reviews are usually longer and a little more detailed but I am in a wait and see mode with this series.

    3 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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