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Wake Me Up Paperback – January 5, 2016

4.6 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

  • "Justin Bog punctuates the sexual stigmatization that results from a bigoted societal mindset in Wake Me Up. Divided into four sections, Bog uses the Greek Chorus in parts one and four to present the collective voice of the many characters of whom Chris (the narrator) observes during his astral travel . . . Bog's attractive writing style, set to present tense, combines storytelling via the narrator and engaging dialogue . . . Wake Me Up is well written, thought-provoking, and a definite must-read by all."---Anita Lock, Manhattan Book Review
  • "Although Justin Bog is a member of International Thriller Writers group and his new book Wake Me Up is a crime story in general, it's not an easy-going page-turner about catching and bringing criminals to justice . . . The story unfolds from a very unusual point-of-view: from the depth of Chris' coma, the narrator is Chris himself. This is an original approach to tell such a complex and intricate story!"---Portland Book Review


"A Kafkaesque literary trip through the brain of a brutally assaulted teenage boy whose supercharged perceptions expose the secret sins of those he wants to love and hopes to believe in . . . The genius of author Justin's Bog's first full-length novel is that though everything Chris "knows" and recounts in his inner monologue is mysterious, maybe mystical, there is no hint of hocus-pocus, nor of the vague disjointed dream sequences one might expect from an unconscious protagonist . . . In the brief lead-up and denouement we see reality clearly: the attack and the aftermath. In between, everything that "happens" to Chris in his shut-off state is just as real and just as believable-but impossible. It would be hard to identify a literary precedent for this method of construction--Franz Kafka, perhaps, meets Lewis Carroll."---Chanticleer Book Reviews

"Some reviewers have compared this story to The Lovely Bones and I'm not exactly sure if I agree with that assessment. I believe this story goes even deeper than The Lovely Bones for it demonstrates the destruction that one tends to lend to himself . . . Great read and one that I most certainly would recommend adding to your reading shelf. Bog is the conscious voice of literary reason and socially adept to handle whatever story comes his way! Well done! I'm impressed! I'd love to see this made into a movie. It would be so fitting for today's movement."--Mello and June, It's a Book Thang!

"Wake Me Up is a powerful story. Justin Bog is a special writer. He has a unique writer's voice. I find the way he structures his stories to be a breath of fresh air . . . Buckle up and get ready for the emotional roller coaster ride through a torn family's drama. A mother who has experienced a cheating husband and now a dying son, a father whose depression and choices have brought him to the verge of death, and a boy who is just trying to survive."---Sage's Blog Tours

"(Wake Me Up) is Justin Bog's most extraordinary book to date, and an absolute masterpiece! Intensely written, this is the tragic story of a teenage montana boy who lies at the heart of this tale, comatose after a brutal beating fueled by hate, and the chaos that ensues after the attack. all told through the eyes of our victim and hero, Chris Bullet. The author weaves the story together as a group of individual stories as witnessed by Chris almost supernaturally in his altered and ethereal state. brilliantly crafted, complex, and beautifully written! I cannot say enough great things about this fine book, and happily encourage everyone to read it. It is a story of the injustice of our times, and I believe it will be a story that will stay on the shelves long after our times have all passed. If you read nothing else this year, please read this.  five + stars."---Hogwash, Bradley Knox

About the Author

A member of ITW: International Thriller Writers group, Justin Bog lives in the Pacific Northwest with his two long coat German shepherds, Zippy and Kipling. He is the author of the Suspense Magazine Award-winning collection, Sandcastle and Other Stories: The Complete Edition, and Hark: A Christmas Collection. Find Justin at http://www.justinbog.com and on Facebook at Justin Bog.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 324 pages
  • Publisher: Gravity (January 5, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1513706586
  • ISBN-13: 978-1513706580
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,524,002 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A teenage boy lies in a coma, mentally reliving the events leading up to his attack by a gang of classmates on a random wilding spree.

From his hospital bed, Chris Bullet suffers the aftermath of being cornered, mocked, and bludgeoned by boys who have correctly sensed his vulnerability (from their viewpoint)—he is gay, though Chris tries to hide it. Comatose, Chris “sees” through closed eyes the hidden actions, fears, loves, and guilt of those whose lives intersect his.

Why did Ellis, the boy Chris secretly desired, join his attackers? Why is Geoff, Chris’ lawyer father, so depressed, and indeed, suicidal? Why does Chris’ poetess/professor mother clamp the lid so tightly on her feelings? In the middle of this triangle, is a visiting writer named Deepika who begins an affair with Geoff, is going to have his “love” child, Chris’s half-sibling. All the while, Deepika may be running away from her own fate. Somehow, Chris walks in the minds of these people and others, slowly comprehending what led to his attack. At times he accesses an alter ego, the main character in Deepika’s latest collection of short fiction—Sai, a quick-witted, openly gay newspaper reporter.

The genius of author Justin’s Bog's first full-length novel is that though everything Chris "knows" and recounts in his inner monologue is mysterious, maybe mystical, there is no hint of hocus-pocus, nor of the vague disjointed dream sequences one might expect from an unconscious protagonist.

In the brief lead-up and denouement we see reality clearly: the attack and the aftermath. In between, everything that "happens" to Chris in his shut-off state is just as real and just as believable--but impossible.
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Secrets. Betrayal. A heinous crime. These are elements that can penetrate the most intimate relationships, those between a husband and wife, a parent and child, and even a doctor and a patient.

Wake Me Up is a novel that cannot be easily categorized. It’s part crime, part psychological suspense, told by an omniscient narrator who draws us into a complex, non-linear plot.

The story takes place in a fictional town in Montana and begins with a vicious attack on a fifteen-year-old boy. Suspecting him of being gay, four school bullies crack open the skull of Chris Bullet with a baseball bat. The alleged hate crime sets the scene for a mosaic of inter-related characters changed by the event.

For three days, Chris lies in a hospital bed fighting for his life and recounts the circumstances of how he came to be, but there’s a twist—he’s trapped in a coma. Empowered with the thoughts and details of all those who have touched in his life, we discover the delicate nature of Chris’s closest relationships through a series of vignettes. Parallel narratives seamlessly weave through divergent storylines, and in an almost inconceivable, yet plausible coincidence, Chris’s parents end up at the same hospital where he is, suffering with their own afflictions.

Readers will empathize with Chris Bullet. Though he may be in a state of unconsciousness, he possesses knowledge into the deepest secrets of the people around him. He is aware of their weaknesses and fears, their insincerities and their true motivations. We can rely on his honest point of view to draw our own conclusions about the characters. Do we like them or not? Do we cheer them on or are we loathe to see them find happiness?

Wake Me Up is ultimately a novel about how lives connect and disconnect.
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The characters in this novel were so richly drawn and multi-layered, I felt as if I knew them-I wanted to cry with some, and slap others. The story line is timely, and I appreciated the approach from the omniscient (and surprising) narrator, allowing insight into the different players in a small town and their thoughts, concerns, and actions in regards to a teenage boy being beaten by bullies over his perceived homosexuality. One thing that struck me, and really set the tone of the story for me, was the thoughts of several people at the school who kind of, sort of, or not at all, knew Chris (the victim) but would 'light a candle for him' just the same. Justin Bog is a very skilled writer and I can't imagine this story being told any differently and having the same impact.
Highly recommend for parents, school workers, teenagers.
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Wake Me Up by Justin Bog

A tiny town, a gross injustice! Teenager Chris Bullet is beaten with a bat by four bullies because they thought he was gay. In this awesome novel you'll read about his coma state of mind, where he can see or read what's going on in his loved ones and friends lives. I can't imagine being able to do that, don't know if I'd want to. Right from the start the author gets intense, page after page of raw emotion. I was thrown into the lives of these characters, some I didn't like, some I felt sorry for, all being told by Chris in his coma. The author does a outstanding job with this story! I've read his books, all of them well written thought out stories. This one was his first full novel!! I recommend this book to anyone who likes intense stories with strong characters.
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