Sunday, February 19, 2012

Dreaming Awake by Gwen Hayes

Dreaming Awake is book #2 in The Falling Under Series by Gwen Hayes. It was published by NAL a Penquin imprint on January 3, 2012 and is 336 pages. It's available at most online stores in both print and e-book format.

She fell for him in a nighttime world. But the time for dreaming is past—and the here-and-now can be just as fragile their love…

When Theia Alderson first encountered a mysterious, handsome boy in her dreams, she never imagined how finding Haden Black—and falling in love—could change her life. To save Haden, Theia sacrificed everything. And the dangerous bargain she made could have lasting repercussions.

Now Theia has returned to Serendipity Falls, and she finds herself struggling with the same deadly hungers that have tortured Haden. When students at their high school fall prey to a mysterious illness, Theia can’t help but wonder if Haden’s control is slipping—and how much longer she’ll have a grip on her own.

And still the nightmare realm of Under won’t let them go. Someone from Haden’s past is determined to destroy Theia from the inside out, starting with those closest to her, forcing Theia to choose between family and friends and a love that may have been doomed from the start...


Dreaming Awake by Gwen Hayes was absolutely fantastic, I was waiting for this sequel to Falling Under and when I was allowed to view the ARC I was beside myself with joy! Gwen Hayes has a true talent for grabbing the reader and taking them on a marvelous ride of ‘mythological’ proportions.

I don’t want to re-hash the book but discuss more of the changes that occur since the first book, Falling Under. First thing: THEIA! She has really grown into a strong self-reliant heroine, her maturity rate and ability to cope with everything going on in Dreaming Awake makes her one of my all time favorite kick butt ladies! I disagree with a few of her choices but I understand why she did them. There’s a bit of a lack of communication between herself and Haden but I’ll address this later. Gwen Hayes really nailed Theia’s character spot on-she was the perfect blend of innocence and Mara. Theia refuses to hurt anyone yet she constantly fights with the Mara side of her that craves a taste of those ‘delightful’ souls. To Theia’s heartbreak, she does quite a bit of harm but isn’t aware of it. Read the book to find out!

Haden has a chance to see things from a different point of view; he is, in my very own humble opinion, one of the hottest bad boys in fiction this year! He fights his half demon side and when he embraces his human side he is the epitome of swoon worthy goodness. Again, Ms. Hayes wrote his character as a ‘human’ so beautifully and flawlessly as he makes the transformation that I felt his wonder and awe as I believe she meant for us to feel it.

Secondary characters were as fantastic as the main characters! Amelia, a friend that is as loyal as they come with her own ‘budding’ powers and Donny, who is a riot yet just as loyal. Then comes in Varnie, the local psychic who is much hotter without making himself up as a woman with the ‘mysterious’ psychic get up. Theia and Haden couldn’t ask for better or more loyal friends and I couldn’t have asked for more entertaining reading with them included in Dreaming Awake.

The romance and love between all the characters in Dreaming Awake is perfect; no love or romance is forced upon the reader, any romance between any characters (hint, hint-evil grin) develops naturally and I love that!!! Haden and Theia’s love becomes stronger, more real-more developed and more mature---Just MORE! The thing is about the romance and love between Theia and Haden is that is feels natural and real, not forced. A true connection between souls who are willing to do anything for that person who is their soul mate, I felt that Ms. Hayes narrative made this connection believable to the reader as she did with any other love connections that may or may not have happened in Dreaming Awake (Big ~wink~).

The Realm of Under is featured a bit more prominently as is Mara, Haden’s evil conniving mother who literally makes Theia’s life hell. What Theia, Haden and friends go through in Dreaming Awake is action packed, creepy as all get out and truly kept me on the edge of my seat. I read this one in one sitting and I have to say is most definitely one of my favorite series and I’m anxiously awaiting the next book in the Falling Under Series!
Ms. Hayes is on my ~go to authors~ list for many reasons but the biggest being her amazing ability to write a scene that can either bring me to tears or have me laugh out loud, her descriptive talent is absolutely phenomenal and visualization is so very easy when reading her writing. That’s just a few reasons why I count her as one of my favorite authors but there are many more.

Dreaming Awake gets a One-Sit-Read from me! The highest honor I ever give and this is the first one this year!

*Thank you to ATWT and the publisher for allowing me to view this ARC in exchange for my honest opinion


  1. Sounds good, but I really should take a look at book 1 first. This is not a series to jump around in

    1. Most definitely! You should start with Falling Under-the first in the series otherwise I think you'd get lost!

      This isn't a stand alone book where you can jump in and understand exactly what's going on.

      I really love this series-I was so glad when I had a chance at getting the ARC but was to sick to write the review before it was released.

      Happy to say that the 'flare up' is over and I'll be writing more reviews and seeing many of you on your blogs.

  2. I wasn't so sure of this one. However, the way you talk about the characters... even the secondary ones make me want this one. Oh yea... you convinced me.

    1. I think you'd really like it, Melissa! It's mythology is interesting but there's so much more to the book.

      Gwen has a real talent for writing real characters and character interactions-that was a big part of the enjoyment factor for me, along with the plot, the emotional entanglements, the who-dunnit, etc...

      So much to enjoy in this series :o]

  3. I'll have to look into this series. The cover is gorgeous!

  4. Oh wow! So glad to hear the second book is wonderful as well. :) Great review. I actually forgot about this series, and you reminded me. :) Thank you!!

    Hope you are doing well, take care. *hugs*

  5. Oo! Sounds really good! I'll have to go and purchase Falling Under!