Cover Image: The Waking Forest

The Waking Forest

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Member Reviews

I didn’t really enjoy this book and didn’t end up finishing. The narrator was very monotone and I just did not enjoy the way the author wrote. The writing felt both very juvenile but also the description of things were grotesque. Definitely could see other readers enjoying this but it wasn’t for me.
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This is a different book I can’t really compare it to anything that I’ve read. It’s two stories going one at once rotating each chapter. One is a girl living with her family. She has nightmares while both awake and asleep. The other is a forest witch that grants wishes to children that come to her nightly from her home in the woods. The witch is listening to a story from a fox that isn’t a fox but is something different something much more. I really enjoyed this strange story. It’s something different and very enjoyable.
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I did a rare thing…I didn’t finish this. I got 35% of the way and was equal parts bored and annoyed. None of the various plot lines were going anywhere…let alone coming together. And while I typically enjoy YA (and even younger) fiction, I couldn’t tolerate any more of the whiny, melodramatic sisters in this story. This author has once again scored a beautiful cover…but the old adage applies…don’t judge the book…
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"The Waking Forest" by Alyssa Wees is a beautifully crafted dark fairytale that will enchant readers from beginning to end. Wees' vivid imagination and exquisite prose transports us to a world of magic, mystery and wonder.

The story follows the journey of Rhea, a young girl who experiences terrible nightmares, which is contrasted with the story of a witch who grants wishes but has no wish of her own.

Wees weaves these two narratives together, joining fantasy and horror. I felt that when the stories combined the writing weakened and as such I did find it harder to read. However, one of the strengths of "The Waking Forest" is Wees' use of language. Her prose immerses the reader in rich imagery allowing the reader to be drawn in. 

As a teacher I think looking at different parts of this novel would be really great to show junior high students how to build characters and atmosphere.
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Really not jiving with this audiobook. The narrator is ok, not great. It is difficult to distinguish between her character voices. While she isn't unpleasant to listen to, she isn't pleasant either.

The characters are unlikeable and somewhat disturbing and I find myself not wanting to read about them. The witch in the forest is just confusing. And the purple prose is the purplest prose that ever purpled. It's so bad. I normally *enjoy* purple prose (when done well), but here it just slows the pace to glacial and I find myself reading around the words to get the story and actively avoiding reading it altogether.

*Thanks to NetGalley and Dreamscape Media for providing an early audio copy for review.
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This book is awesome anything witchy mystery vibe is a yes from me

This book is so well written great plot and likeable characters 
People will love this book
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A dream or a reality?

Like the main protagonist, I have often wondered about this topic too. A wish-granting witch, a princess with magical abilities, a cruel king and all this collapsing on a young girl living a normal life. Rhea is often confused about whether the forests she seas on the peripheral boundaries of her home are a reality or just visions. These visions are turning into a vicious reality day by day and she just can't call the difference. 

I liked the amalgamation of normal reality with a witch in the woods. The struggle even as a reader/listener is real when we talk about distinguishing reality from dreams. So often when you feel confused, that's what the book wants you to be. So keep calm and carry on, it all gets answered! No specific character as such outshines me, so I don't have any favourites here. But the story was definitely good.

Rating: 4/5 ⭐️
Genre: #Fantasy 

Thanks, @netgalley @dreamscape_media @alyssa_wees for the audiobook ARC
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I don’t know what I just read but I do know I liked it. This was nothing like what I was expecting. The Waking Forest is a dark and twisted fairy tale that I really enjoyed. 

My biggest complaint about the book was it was a little slow to get going. Once it did get going I really enjoyed the ride. The summary of the book barely scratched the surface of what this book is. It was filled with magic and fantasy that I was not expecting. 

Rhea sees a forest in her backyard but it disappears every time she gets close. She needed to know more and so did I. As the secrets of the forest were explained I was more and more hooked all the way to the conclusion. 

This book was a dark fairy tale version of the movie Inception. Definitely check it out.
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Listen this is so much better than Harry Potter and there is no controversy with the author. This book has all the magic and fantasy and family you could ask for. 
The narrator was perfect for the role too! 
I had the absolute best time listening to this. I was in such a good mood that when my children ripped a sink from the wall and essentially ruined the house, I was like "that's okay. We all make mistakes."
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I really wanted to like this one more than I did. Don't get me wrong, it was alright. It had several good elements but it just didn't come together for me. The purple prose was a bit overbearing for a majority of the story. With all the siblings having names that start with R I wish the narrator had used distinct voices for them. It would've helped with some of the confusion I had at times. I did enjoy the aspects of different fairytales and how the author used them to create a really unique story. So while this one fell flat for me I'm sure it'll be a favorite for others.

Thanks to netgalley and the publishers for this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.
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I've had this hardback sitting on my shelf for over a year and was very happy to be given an audio arc. The synopsis sounded intriguing and the cover caught my attention.  I liked the uniqueness of the story that blended some aspects of various fairy tales.  I really liked the familial dynamics within the story as well, although all the characters having names that started with R was really difficult to keep them straight.  The audio narration also didn't help in that regard because no voices were distinct to any character.  I've realized this author's writing isn't my cup of tea.  She is so overly flowery with her metaphors that it becomes very eye roll worthy.  This story was also trying to be too many things and they didn't mix well together.  The dream not a dream was weird and confusing but when the reveal was shown at 70% and there was still 30% to go I was like what is the point.  It was a very low 3 star book in my opinion.
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In the beginning of this book I had no idea it was going to end up how it did! I liked how the book has a fairytale vibe and I really enjoyed the action sequences! I Love going into a book thinking it will just be a same old same old story and come out of it going WOW that was really fun!
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I really wanted to like this one. It had so many elements that usually resonate so well with me. I was drawn to the blurb, the cover, and the narrator. The language is quite lyrical (although sometimes overly so, to the extent that I got lost in the words and lost the thread of what was being told) but the story itself was rather too all over the place for me. The beginning with the witch was cool to listen to but I had no clue what it meant or why it was there or what was going on by the end of it. Shifting gears from that to YA angst left me confused and irritated -  and the subsequent fever-rush of dreams and sisters and miscommunication and anxiety didn't help with that at all... This one wasn't for me.
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3.5 rating
The waking forest by Alyssa Wees, was unique in its own regard. This book follows our main character Rhea; who discovers a mysterious forest on the edge of her home, however, each time she investigates it, the forest suddenly disappears. Her sisters brush it off as her being dramatic and or crazy, until one night when Rhea goes into her attic and discovers a boy in the darkness. This boy, is not only in the dark every time they meet, but he offers to play a game with her in-order for her to get the answers she has been desperately seeking about the forest. 
Meanwhile, beyond the forest lies a witch. This witch waits for children to beg her for their wishes to be granted, whilst she is on her throne made of bone. 
After sometime, a fox like stranger arrives at her throne, and he then asks her what she wishes to be granted. 
The witch is reluctant to answer this peculiar stranger at first; but after several attempts, the fox like stranger succeeds to at least visit her with tales of magic and intrigue.  

I found this book to be quite complex; because there was two separate stories going at the same time. It felt like I was listening to inception. A story within a story, within another story, and Because of this I got confused which story went with one another. It does finally come together in the end but there was alot of fluff to get there.  I did like the world building in this book, with its colorful prose, and poetic metaphors which helped me keep going,however in the end something I cant quite put my finger on fell flat for me.   
All in all, I recommend this book to  anyone who likes two stories that are being told synonymously that involve witches, sphinx, and corrupt kings.
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Listen if you like:
✨ YA Books 
✨ Fantasy Genre
✨ Single PoV & narrator 
✨Dreams and nightmares 
✨ Magic

This book sounded so good and promising from the plot description, but somehow I just was never quite hooked and fully interested, the writing felt redundant and it became annoying when phrases were used over and over in rapid succession such as “the fox who is not a fox” like I got it the first time I don’t need that introduction for the entire book. 

I am definitely being knit picky here but I think the writing just didn’t have what I was looking for even though it was very atmospheric at times which I greatly enjoy but then the repeated odd phrasings pulled me out of those vibes. 

Plot was predicable and slow and definitely didn’t get the pacing right. 

Thank you to the publisher for my ALC in exchange for my honest review. I will say I think I’m in the odds for not loving this one and it has potential so take my review with a grain of salt.
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