WHEN WE WAKE by Karen Healey
Kirkus Star


Age Range: 12 - 18
Email this review


In a fast-moving and carefully built science-fiction story, Tegan Oglietti attends a climate change rally in 2027 and wakes up in a hospital just over 100 years later.

Soon after waking, Tegan learns that a sniper shot her at the rally, and her body was frozen using an experimental technique. Tegan is the first person to be awoken from a frozen state and is, as she discovers when she tries to flee the hospital, the subject of much journalistic curiosity. Although her government handlers try to keep her out of the public eye, she is allowed to live with one of her doctors as well as to attend school. There, she meets a cast of well-drawn characters, including Bethari, a savvy aspiring journalist; Joph, a chemistry genius who creates legal drugs; and Abdi, a singer from Djibouti in Australia on a rare visa. As Tegan's handlers become increasingly sinister, the teens begin investigating the project that brought Tegan back. The worldbuilding is thorough and expressed easily without ever lapsing into tiresome exposition. Tegan's friends are a fully realized multiracial and substantially LGBT cast, and even Tegan's whiteness is reflected upon thoughtfully. The ending is complete enough to provide some closure, but readers may hope to learn more about this world and its characters in a second volume.

Accessible, thoughtful and compelling—science fiction done right. (Science fiction. 12 & up)

Pub Date: March 5th, 2013
ISBN: 978-0-316-20076-9
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Little, Brown
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 2013


ChildrenWHILE WE RUN by Karen Healey
by Karen Healey
ChildrenGUARDIAN OF THE DEAD by Karen Healey
by Karen Healey


ChildrenTHE ADORATION OF JENNA FOX by Mary E. Pearson
by Mary E. Pearson
ChildrenTHE CARBON DIARIES 2017 by Saci Lloyd
by Saci Lloyd
ChildrenDIVERSE ENERGIES by Tobias S.  Bucknell
by Tobias S. Bucknell