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Sleepers, Awake Paperback – June 25, 2013
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Forever mourning her undeclared love, Ian, Agnes suffers through the pain of her grief through both realms of the conscious and the unconscious. Awake or dreaming, Agnes seeks out sanctuary from the pain in her life, offering herself up for the redemption of others. And in doing so, Agnes finds her own purpose, her own truth, her own redemption.
Masterfully crafted, Barber leaves the reader contemplating the transcendent nature of love. This story will break your heart as it feeds your soul. It is a gem of a love story that is to be treasured.
Absolutely five stars.
Additionally, the relationship between Agnes and her father, Peter Larch, was perfect because it was imperfect. The author managed to convey so much through the simple act of cutting a string off a box of donuts. I wouldn't trade Agnes's dad for a million perfect fathers. Between Agnes's dad and Vivian Park, her best friend, Agnes is blessed with more love than she'd get from a million ordinary friends, and I wish she felt she deserved it.
This story is the perfect tale of friendship, love, sacrifice and loss and it will leave you feeling and reflecting long after you've put it down.
I can honestly say I am spell bound by the beauty of the writing in this haunting story of unrequited love and how deeply it embeds into the soul of Agnes Larch. If it wasn't so beautifully written she could have come off as a stalker, but the writing captures the purity of her youthful crush and the loss she feels when it's ripped from her world. The details are eloquently written, although I did feel that it could have been cut down on a bit as we got to the middle of the story. At that point I wanted the story to pick up speed and break out of the fog of details, although it was still beautiful. I am not sure what this book has been classified as, although I assume NA because of the language and some darker elements. I really think this would be a beautiful YA or even younger audience story with its magical dreamland and protective creatures if the language was cleaned up and the dark moment near the end where she tries to complete her task on her own was deleted. I also think that Agnes would need to be in high school rather than college. I think the target audience is off for this book and needs to be cleaned up to find the appropriate readers. I LOVE YA and NA, so it worked for me, but I think the audience is limited by the NA in this case because of the "young" feel of the story, writing, and characters. I love and hate the ending only for the fact that it was beautiful and appropriate, but I wanted the cookie cutter ending in my heart. This story had me sad, haunted, hopeful, and heartbroken. I would highly recommend this to everyone that likes to read young stories with a mythical edge. I want to say this would be a great story for pre-teenagers, but only if it's cleaned up. If I could do half rating this would be a 4.5. If the audience didn't seem off I would have rated it a 5! Very creative and beautifully written!