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Neverworld Wake


Neverworld Wake

Out of all of the books I have read or reviewed in the past year, I am happy to say that NEVERWORLD WAKE by Marisha Pessl was by far the best.

NEVERWORLD WAKE starts with teenage Beatrice Hartley and jumps right into her group of friends. Before graduating last year, Beatrice went to Darrow-Harker boarding school and was surrounded by a great group of friends, including one amazing and sincere boyfriend who was also in the group. Then on one random night, her boyfriend was found dead in a quarry, with no clue about how he died or who killed him. Beatrice was left to grieve and didn’t stay in touch with her friends.

"Out of all of the books I have read or reviewed in the past year, I am happy to say that NEVERWORLD WAKE by Marisha Pessl was by far the best."

One year later, she is invited to return to the house where the group used to endlessly spend long weekends and nights together. Hoping to find out more about the mystery, Beatrice goes. Everyone is different, yet the same; they have all been changed, yet Beatrice still feels like it's almost like before --- almost. The night plays out and still she knows nothing about Jim, yet she doesn’t dare to ask. Finally she crashes on a couch because it’s late and she doesn’t want to drive home. The next morning, the strangest thing has happened. Beatrice and her friends have to use the “gift” they have been given to figure out Jim’s mystery and survive as a team. Their stories begin to unfold in overlapping and inextricably bound layers. This “gift” is the beginning of the Neverworld Wake.

I don’t think there is one word or even a phrase, I would use to describe NEVERWORLD WAKE, but my best metaphor is that the story is like an anchor pulling me deeper into the “ocean” that is the book. When I began reading the story, I was a little confused because the characterization and people were being used in a complicated way from the beginning. It is a book that I would recommend to be read in a focused environment, it needs some concentration to experience the full emotion and power. If I had the time, I could have read the book in one sitting, I will probably read it that way soon over the summer for round two! Again, the book was like an anchor, in that the longer I read, the more I wanted to know. It got more complicated as a I read, too, and near the end the strings pulled together to make a perfect mystery, a perfect solved story of events. I stayed up late thinking about it, and reading the last chapter made me shiver --- in a good way!

I may have stated this earlier, but the only things I have to critique is that it can’t be read for 10 minutes in the car or really quick before a study session. I honestly didn’t see this as a critique because the focus is completely worth it.

The author of NEVERWORLD WAKE, Marisha Pessl, has completely fulfilled her purpose. If anyone is looking for the perfect mystery/drama in a fantasy setting, NEVERWORLD WAKE is perfect. I enjoyed every plot twist and turn, and the ending was deeply satisfying, but still left me wanting more, which is impressive. Pessl is very sophisticated in her wording and it was worth every second I would trade my hours of sleep for reading. NEVERWORLD WAKE is the best type of story for a long plane ride or an all-night read.

Reviewed by Lillian B., Teen Board Member on June 14, 2018

Neverworld Wake
by Marisha Pessl