My Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Publish Date: March 13, 2018
I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for an honest review. Thank you to NetGalley, Flatiron Books, and Alice Feeney for the opportunity.
Amber wakes up in a hospital. She can’t move. She can’t speak. She can’t open her eyes. She can hear everyone around her, but they have no idea. Amber doesn’t remember what happened, but she has a suspicion her husband had something to do with it.
Alternating between her paralyzed present, the week before her accident, and a series of childhood diaries from twenty years ago, the reader slowly uncovers what happened, and why. It makes you wonder: Is something really a lie if you believe it’s the truth?
Picture yourself laying in a hospital bed, conscious and aware of your surroundings…. you can hear and feel the actions of the medical staff, you can hear what your visitors are saying, but you are paralyzed, unable to move or speak, and you don’t remember how you got there.
Welcome to Amber Reynolds’ world.
Amber Reynolds wakes up in a hospital, but to everyone else she is in a coma. She can hear her visitors, but they don’t know it. Her memory is jumbled. Her mind blurs fantasy and reality. She has flashbacks, hallucinations, and dreams sequences.
Her visitors include her husband Paul, her sister Claire, a mysterious person that floats in and out of her room when she’s alone, and her parents.
Paul, Claire, and her parents are unaware that she can hear them. Will they reveal things that they’ve kept from her as they stand by her bedside?
What is real, and what is not? What is Amber lying about? The truth slowly starts to be uncovered about 40% into the book.
The truth is shocking, twisty and I loved it!
There is a pivotal moment where The Big Reveal happens and it STUNNED me. It changed my entire perspective after I had a chance to get over the shock. It’s rare that a book does this to me. But The Big Reveal made sense, tied everything together, and quickly moved the story forward.
Amber is an excellent narrator. She likes to tell her stories using three things. This is brilliant. It’s easy to remember and sets up the theme of the scenes.
The author’s writing is very engaging and descriptive. I felt like I was there in the hospital room, hearing Amber’s ventilator and the beeping monitors. The dream sequences were so vivid that I could picture them happening, and it felt like I was watching a movie through words.
The ending wasn’t really an ending, it was a teaser to a sequel! I hope Alice Feeney writes one soon.
I think this quote sums this book up perfectly.
The premise reminds me a little bit about If I Die Before I wake by Emily Koch. The MC in that story is also in a coma though she can hear everyone but can’t respond. I am curious about this narrative and the mysterious persons who visits Amber. Adding this one to my TBR.
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Thanks Diana! I’ll have to add If I Die Before I Wake to my TBR so that I can compare the two. 🙂
Abby, I just finished this one earlier in the week and…WOW! Holy cow! What a story, right?! Whew! I, too, think that there could definitely be a follow up to this; I certainly hope so!
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Glad you enjoyed it, too, Tara!