Reawakened by Colleen Houck
Book 2 of the EpicReads Decathlon, CHECK!
So before we get started a little background info: I am absolutely obsessed with Ancient Egyptian history. Absolutely. Obsessed. I’m actually studying history in university right now thanks to my discovery of Egypt long ago–it launched my love of history in general. That said, it is possible that despite my sincerest efforts to avoid it, when it comes to this mythology I may be just a liiiiiiittle bit, um, particular. Picky? Something along those lines. Anyway, once I realized Reawakened was an Egyptian story, it almost didn’t matter what the rest of the novel was about. I did my best though to avoid getting caught up in the minute details. Surprisingly enough, the issues I had had nothing to do with the use of the history and everything to do with the story itself.
Ready the surgeons, y’all, ’cause we got a fatal case of insta-love over he-ere! It takes approximately 0.2 seconds from Lily to start falling for Amon, despite the fact that during those 0.2 seconds he magically bound them without her consent, drained her organs, stalked her, and essentially kidnapped her. Then, of course, Amon spends the entirety of the novel fighting his emotions while Lily spends it trying to seduce him no matter how many times and ways he says “no.” If that ain’t love, I don’t know what is!
I have very mixed emotions about Liliana/Lily. She is your typical YA Miss Privileged–lavish home that doesn’t feel like home, controlling parents obsessed with their image, fake friends, special privileges courtesy of cash, and a yearning for something more. This is not necessarily a bad thing, just not a new thing. What I liked is that she’s smart, level-headed, and perceptive. Her observation skills serve both as an asset for the characters as well as a source of intrigue for the reader. I could also identify a lot with her analysis of herself, which is a bonus. But as much as Liliana boasts grand change, that as ‘Lily’ she is an entirely different person, there is not enough time before her adventures to see the change yourself. As a result, I had trouble really connecting with her because rather than watching her progress, I was being told about virtually unseen progression. Lily’s people observing, unique as it is, also kind of ruins any possibility of unexpected betrayal because she guesses it in advance. And to top it all of, when it comes to Amon she is one of the most desperate, pushy (when trying to seduce him), insecure (when he rejects her), whiny, passive, pushover-y (when he wants her to do something), he-says-jump-she-hops-off-a-freaking-bridge MC I think I’ve ever encountered.
Amon (Ah-moan) was intriguing but a little intense. Intrigue-wise, he is most definitely otherworldly and it’s (sometimes) obvious he is from a different period but then there are times when he appears to fit in flawlessly. Not even in a progression kind of way, but in a random spurts kind of way which, unfortunately, takes a little bit away from the whole I-am-an-Ancient-Egyptian-prince thing–he more often comes off as a normal American teen with magic powers than a resurrected mummy. The intensity part comes in literally every single time he speaks. I swear, that boy made even the smallest obstacle into a symbol of the oncoming apocalypse. He also handled Lily with borderline vomit-inducing care/attention–except, you know, when he’s using her for her organs (dead serious). Now, in some cases I would find this attention endearing–which I did, the first dozen times–and would likely have spent this paragraph singing his praises but with Amon it’s too much. As opposed to treating her like the brave adventurer Lily says she’s become, Amon treats her like a delicate, breakable thing. Unless, of course, he’s rejecting her advances in which cases he’s a bit of a brute.
I like badass heroines–or at the absolute very least an assertive one–and love interests with some balls. I like banter. I like fighting back. I got none of that. I don’t like commands and mindless obedience, even when done out of “love.” I got a hell of a lot of that.
His brothers on the other hand are the highlight of the novel–Asten had me in stitches too many times to count!
The plot had so much potential. So much. A resurrected Egyptian prince? Threat of an apocalypse of cosmic, mythological proportions? Mythical beings to take down? Magic? Mummies? Yes, PLEASE. I was so excited, guys. So excited. And now I’m sad. Reawakened took literally for-e-ver to finally introduce the whole Seth problem, opting instead to spend majority of the first half of the novel whining about Amon’s lack of organs and the push-and-shove of their insta-love. The romance is most definitely a focus for the rest of the novel as well, many times overshadowing the adventure. Most of all though, it just feels like it’s missing something, that little spark that makes books so captivating, so unputdownable. Which sucks, because I had such high hopes given everything I’ve heard about the author and the topic itself. Overall, it was all right; not great, not altogether horrible, just not for me.
I’m still going to read the next one though–it is Egyptian, after all. 😉
Click here for the book synopsis on goodreads!