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When She Woke
"Jordan blends hot-button issues such as separation of Church and State,...
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Overall, what do you think of "When She Woke"?

Created: 09/17/12

Replies: 34

Posted Sep. 17, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
BookBrowse

Join Date: 11/16/10

Posts: 43

Overall, what do you think of "When She Woke"?

Overall, what do you think of "When She Woke"?


Posted Oct. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
bettyt

Join Date: 05/12/11

Posts: 121

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I haven't finished reading it yet but it is definitely thought-provoking. It makes me angry because of how they are treated. This is a society where there is no separation of church and state. It is very scary. Reality TV at an extreme. Some aspects of it could definitely happen, that is part of what makes it so scary. So many rights were taken away from these women. But I am only about halfway through so still have quite a bit to read.


Posted Oct. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
janeh

Join Date: 06/15/11

Posts: 102

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I am usually not a big fan of futuristic type books, but I was actually intrigued by the subject matter in this one and really enjoyed the book.


Posted Oct. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 138

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I wasn't prepared to like this book. I had just finished reading The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry and was, in general, feeling good about the human race so I was reluctant to read a book next that might "bring me down". I read this book in one sitting. The only time I put it down was when Hannah was preparing to return to Aidan and I was so furious at her, I didn't want to start screaming. Very captivating story with a fresh and novel idea.


Posted Oct. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Lea Ann

Join Date: 04/20/11

Posts: 68

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I was mesmerized by this book. Yes, it had overtones of The Scarlet Letter, but it also developed its own independent story line. Like some of the other readers, furturistic novels are not generally my favorite books to read, but this one proved to be an exception. It made me think, it made me almost fear for my daughters, granddaughters and great-granddaughters. I don't find the "chroming" to be something that might come to be, but the rule of our nation by those who have no allowance within their hearts for the beliefs of others is too close to actuality to not cause concern. I would be heartbroken, for example, were one of my granddaughters or great-granddaughters chose to have an abortion, but I also feel that is their decision; not mine. And so it is for so many things within our lives. When She Woke is that rare book, entertaining and yet thought provoking about serious issues. Thank you for selecting it as one of the books to be read and then discussed here.


Posted Oct. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
beckyh

Join Date: 05/08/11

Posts: 41

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I really liked this book. There was so much to think about. First, it was not just the "red" but also the loss of privacy, the constant monitoring, then being ejected back in to the world as a changed person with the mark of evil on you.
I must admit I wanted to know what the othere colors were punishment for. Even though you could figure a few out I really wanted more information.
I expected the comparison to The Scarlet Letter, but I was not prepared for the rather shocking racist feelings that were aroused by the color punishments. I have often thought that this country has lost its sense of shame and that that was a bad thing: however, the unending, unyielding shame that relentlessly pervaded Hannah's life made me wonder anew.


Posted Oct. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sharonw

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 6

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I really wanted to like this book. I didn't. A compelling plot was over-run with heavy handed commentary on political and social problems. Most of these are old arguments. I really didn't find much fresh insight here. The author also tried too hard to impress at times with 'literary' esoteric word choices when simpler ones would have worked better.


Posted Oct. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kristenh

Join Date: 10/22/10

Posts: 11

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I loved this book which shocked me because even though I thought the description of the story line was good the idea of futuristic based novel isn't something I usually gravitate towards. I haven't ever read the Scarlet Letter so I won't be able to make any comparisons but I will probably go out and find a copy to read now.


Posted Oct. 24, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
ylhoff

Join Date: 10/23/12

Posts: 24

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I wanted to love the story, but felt it moved too quickly. It did not allow for the kind of character development that would allow the reader to form a strong bond with the characters. It felt like it was all in a rush and would have made a fantastic short story or novella. The writing flowed well. What would save it is a second volume that would go back and address how society got to where it was, how the characters formed.


Posted Oct. 24, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 138

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I would be interested in a prequel as well


Posted Oct. 24, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
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martie

Join Date: 09/20/12

Posts: 2

RE: Overall, what do you think of

Fascinating intrigue in first half but that last half or third seemed like the author lost the exotic aura. This would make a good movie. It's rather like Hunger Games for adults.


Posted Oct. 25, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
carmen s

Join Date: 04/27/11

Posts: 33

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I really liked it and I thought the way it ended, there could be another book.


Posted Oct. 25, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
paml

Join Date: 10/25/12

Posts: 36

RE: Overall, what do you think of

This is a novel I could have read in one sitting if I had the time. I have reccomended it to many. I adored "Mudbound" and was not dissapointed by "When She Awoke". Two very different novels, but both well written and intriquing. About 3/4 of the way through the book I felt the story lost it's edge and was dissapointed that it didn't seem to pick it up again. It ended on a positive note. There could be a sequel. There really wasn't a character I felt strongly about, the story line definetly carried the novel for me. Definetly believable that this could occur in the near future.


Posted Oct. 25, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
dianem

Join Date: 10/25/12

Posts: 27

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I was really glad i read it. I had seen it before but never really looked at it and now I'm so glad I got a chance to read it. I will be recommending to my friends and family.


Posted Oct. 25, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
dianes

Join Date: 05/16/11

Posts: 55

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I loved this book. Found it very imaginative and totally different from her first book, which was also great.


Posted Oct. 26, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terrio

Join Date: 08/16/11

Posts: 41

RE: Overall, what do you think of "When She Woke"

I liked the book overall, although I agree with others that the last part seemed rushed and certain plot points towards the end seemed egregious. I'm not a huge fan of futuristic novels because I find it hard to suspend disbelief and buy into the world the author has created. However, that was not a problem with this book. I had no trouble believing in an America in which there is no longer separation between church and state. I grew up in a very conservative Baptist church, so I spent a lot of time with people who passionately believed that their path to God was the only path and should be imposed on others at all costs. So I think Jordan nailed her portrayal of the ultraconservative religious mindset and the potential consequences of an America ruled by the Trinity party. However, I wish Jordan had developed the plot of the second part of the book more fully. I found the entire "escape to Canada" portion of the book unbelievable, both in terms of plot progression and Hannah's actions. And the book ended rather abruptly, with an unsatisfying throwaway line about Kayla's fate. Overall, I would give the book 4 out of 5 stars and would definitely recommend it to friends. In fact, I'm thinking of nominating it for my book club. It would certainly generate a lot of good discussion about race, politics, and religion.


Posted Oct. 26, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
debrap

Join Date: 10/26/12

Posts: 14

RE: Overall, what do you think of

Overall, I really liked the book since I pretty much read it straight through once I got started. It is suspenseful and futuristic. I found the connections to be very timely with regard to what is going on in our current political debate and the friction between church and state.


Posted Oct. 26, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
pennyp

Join Date: 03/22/12

Posts: 117

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I really liked it although I never read this type of book. I will be trying to convince my book club to read it because I think it was interesting, thought provoking and well written. I think it does provide food for though in our current political climate.


Posted Oct. 28, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
garyr

Join Date: 10/23/12

Posts: 10

RE: Overall, what do you think of

Overall not a bad read,the premise is not out of the realm of possibility.the idea is far from original,read "the burden of indigo" by Gene O'neiil. But the characters were nicely developed,and kept your interest


Posted Oct. 28, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terriej

Join Date: 07/28/11

Posts: 93

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I don't like fantasy books. This one did hold my interest. I foundit disturbing.


Posted Oct. 29, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
jknapp

Join Date: 04/11/11

Posts: 37

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I read Mudbound also and really enjoyed that book. It certainly tackled subject matter that would have been taboo for the time. I am finishing the book as I write this comment but mostly I guess I am disturbed by the premise of the book. Not that it is beyond the realm of possibility but just an abhorrent idea. I don't think of it as fantasy or necessarily futuristic. Thought provoking certainly.


Posted Oct. 30, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
judyt

Join Date: 10/19/12

Posts: 5

RE: Overall, what do you think of

The book had echoes of other books I had read in the past--like others, I found it compelling, esp. the first half. The last half--less so. One of the issues was since it was from Hannah's POV, things were limited as far as our knowledge of other people's emotions and thought processes go. Would definitely like to know what happened to some of the other characters. Maybe more books with some of them as POV characters would be interesting.


Posted Oct. 31, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
susanr

Join Date: 04/14/11

Posts: 87

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I was prepared not to like the book as I do not enjoy futuristic books. I was wrong. I enjoyed the book, the characters and the thought provoking issues. It was interesting to see Hannah's growth throughout the book from someone who followed the rules to someone who knew who she was and what she wanted out of her life. I have recommended the book to others.


Posted Oct. 31, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
jeannew

Join Date: 04/23/11

Posts: 26

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I liked this book a lot. While the similarities to The Scarlet Letter are obvious it also reminded me of Margaret Atwood's book A Handmaid's Tale. The religious extremism, subservient roles for women, and emphasis on the importance of childbearing were mirrored in this book. I agree with many of the other posters that the second half of the book felt rushed and incomplete. I felt that the sex scene with Simone was extraneous and didn't fit either the current situation or the flow of the book and I don't understand the reason for it. But overall I think it's a great depiction of what could happen if we allow a small group people to dictate the course of this country.


Posted Nov. 01, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
catharinel

Join Date: 10/19/12

Posts: 16

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I love futuristic books and this is one of my favorites. It was a page turner and I enjoyed seeing Hannah become an independent thinking woman. I thought the love story was somewhat sappy, but I would recommend the book!


Posted Nov. 02, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Peggy H

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 38

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I read and liked Mudbound so looked forward to this and was not disappointed as she handles controversial subjects well and places them in believable settings. I'm not sure how some members of my other book group would react but look forward to recommending it some.


Pegh
Posted Nov. 03, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kate

Join Date: 01/22/11

Posts: 31

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I liked it. I found it emotionally hard to read at times. Especially the part where she was at the Safe House and the "loving support" from Mrs. Henley. That is a sign of a good author, I despised that character!!
I loved Kayla, and was glad she was found at the end. I know it was a tidy ending, but glad she ended it that way.


Posted Nov. 04, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sharalynnep

Join Date: 12/04/11

Posts: 33

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I really enjoyed reading this book and can't wait to pass it on to my book club friends. I haven't read The Scarlet Letter nor have I read anything similar to this before. I am a pro-lifer but this book was disturbing. I have been giving alot of thought to this ever since I read the book..


Posted Nov. 05, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Navy Mom

Join Date: 04/12/12

Posts: 100

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I loved the fact that Jordan took societal issues and thought about how they might play out in the future. I do read a lot of science fiction and historical fiction so I was not uncomfortable with the premises of the book. I also was intrigued with the connection to The Scarlet Letter. It was very long ago that i read it in High School but even after the book took another path I was still thinking about how the two Hannah's were alike. I enjoyed the book. I agree the traveling to Canada at the end on her own was sketchy and it also didn't seem feasible that she would leave Aiden and then have no other problems on the way to Canada. I was also unclear about how the relationship with Simoan fit it. I know Hannah was hungry for human contact, but it didn't seem to really fit with who she was. I did enjoy the book, it kept me reading, and I did pass it on to a friend.


Posted Nov. 06, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Erin G

Join Date: 05/24/12

Posts: 41

RE: Overall, what do you think of

Brilliant concept, and the author did a great job exploring the ramifications of melachroming and the "SOL". I would agree with previous comments that toward the end the book lost its momentum. I found the scene with Simone was out of character, at least the way it took place. I get that Hannah had changed and grown stronger, but her aggressive behavior in that scene seemed a bit forced. Generally, though, I really enjoyed the book and I'll be looking for other work by this author.


Posted Nov. 08, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebeccak

Join Date: 05/26/12

Posts: 10

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I enjoyed the book a lot, and I'm not usually one to read futuristic books or dystopian novels. I genuinely wanted to find out what happened next, and I thought the entire premise was interesting and disturbingly plausible. However, I'm not quite sure whether I liked the ending or not...


Posted Nov. 14, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sallyh

Join Date: 09/07/12

Posts: 56

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RE: Overall, what do you think of

I normally do not care much for futuristic books, but I liked this one and recommended it to my book club.


Posted Nov. 18, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
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viviant

Join Date: 10/26/11

Posts: 9

RE: Overall, what do you think of

The obvious initial correlation was to THE SCARLET LETTER but I felt Ms. Jordan made WHEN SHE WOKE wholly unique. The religious right and the punishment given to Hannah are the major similarities but the story quickly evolves into something much more. Hannah's evolution was fascinating to read about and I feel it made this dystopian/futuristic story much more believable and likable. I read this book earlier this year and thoroughly enjoyed it to the point that I've recommended it to two book clubs.


aka The Book Diva
Posted Jan. 14, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
tracyb

Join Date: 09/22/11

Posts: 29

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I think it was time to Wake Us Up Again. the rights of Women are up for grabs again as is the return of the unloving God. This is a new generation's time to plan ahead for a possibly dismal future. Books such as this can shock us into preparing for this.

Maybe I am too old for this theme and the book was written in a way that evoked fear in me. I put it down a lot then picked it back up reading to the end..


Posted Mar. 18, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
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rosannes

Join Date: 01/29/13

Posts: 21

RE: Overall, what do you think of

I was amazed that I would read a book like this and even more surprised that I enjoyed it. My husband reads all science fiction books and has invited me to try some. I have always declined . I would have to say that When She Woke peeked my curiosity and now maybe a sci-fi book could be in my future.


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