Waking Up the Sun

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 14 Jul 2019

Member Reviews

What a wonderful novella! As a person with high anxiety, it was actually nice to read about a character with the same problem and be able to work through it to have a happy life. I enjoyed reading about these two very wonderful men.
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The anxiety representation is good, but I do think that's probably the best part of the story for me. It's a fairly short read but I still feel like we could have gotten to know the characters a little more. The story seemed a little two dimensional at times and read more with the feel of a fairy tale but with too much realism to really work as a fairy tale. It's a bit hard to describe but I'll just say I guess the writing wasn't really for me.
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Great anxiety rep for sure. Other than that i don't have a lot to say until i gather my thought's about this one. 

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review*
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I throughly enjoyed this book. The anxiety representation through out  is brilliant . It's not often you see this, so was refreshing to read about a MC that wasn't perfect. I like the relationship that develops through the book, it didn't feel forced. Though a short read it was very enjoyable.
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This is going to be a short review, because I don’t have a lot to say about this one.

I just...don’t think this was for me, which is disappointing because I thought I would be THE target audience. I mean the pitch was queer MCs, romance, with a fantasy element; what more could I possibly want?! 

Unfortunately I didn’t find the beginning compelling. The characters were a bit ‘whatever’ and the writing itself wasn’t for me. It read a little too young for me. Overall, it was all just a little too average and with so many amazing books out there waiting to be read, I don’t know that this one is should worth the time...
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A quiet stakes sweet m/m fantasy romance novella that was an easy and cosy read. Lander enters the forest near where he lives on a dare but when he turns around the tree line is nowhere in sight. Trapped inside the magical forest that refuses to let him leave he meets Yban who is keeping secrets about the creatures living there. I did think the start where Lander was getting lost felt a bit…. Meandering. I didn't really feel the intense emotions he was feeling while it was happening that would have made it more interesting. But once he meets Yban this novella becomes such a heartwarming and fluffy read that I really enjoyed. The slower softer pace of them getting to know each other was really well done and it has great discussions about Landers anxiety and Yban being demisexual (it's always great when it's stated explicitly in the text). I also loved how Lander was aware of his thoughts and anxiety in general. He knows how to look after himself, he was clever even in the midst of a stressful situation and he stood up for himself too.

Rep: m/m, anxiety and panic attacks, demisexual, trans female side character.

TW: bullying, transphobia
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I wasn’t as into the characters. I felt they were pretty bland and had no personalities. I was never really into romance stories unless I really connected with at least one of the characters. 

This probably could have been much better of a fantasy story. Like how Lander grew up? What made his parents hate him so much? Was it really because of the way his brain worked? What about the spirits of the forest I would like to know more about them and their legends. What made the god and goddess of the forest different from each other? 

What about the way Yban grew up and learned all the legends? Why in just a short period of 20 years was it forgotten?
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This is the best book for when you want something quiet and honest and low on the angst scale. It’s soothing and real but full of mythology and fairy tale components. Thoroughly enjoyed. 

A+ anxiety rep and demi or ace rep

I received this arc from Netgalley, etc etc
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This book has a lot of good aspects but for some reason just didn't work for me.

The basic plot is that an eighteen year old dude goes into an enchanted forest on a dare and then can't find his way out. He eventually meets another guy who appears to be about twenty-one but has actually been in the forest for twenty years without aging. Scary stuff. Neither of them can get out of the forest, which has a shifting landscape and is very spooky. Eventually they fall in love and try to work their way out.

The imagery of the forest is nice, and I liked the concept of the story. Also, one of the dude's has anxiety, which is probably good representation. So these were good things, but I couldn't get into the story--kept on getting bored and putting it down. Maybe it's just that I couldn't connect with the characters, or that the plot was so straightforward.

So my opinions on this story are fairly neutral. It seems that other people are enjoying it more than me, so if you're looking for anxiety rep and some spooky forest stuff, it's not bad. I did not personally enjoy it, though.
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The characters and their struggles were very realistic and I feel like anyone reading this book could relate to at least one of them. Even though there was not a whole lot of action I felt like it really worked well  for the plot.
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I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.   Thank you NetGalley.  
Waking Up The Sun is a short story.     This book was so easy to read and follow.   It also accurately portrays anxiety which is so important for teens to see.
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Waking Up The Sun reads like a fairy tale or a parable. It’s a fairly simplistic plot (it’s less than a hundred pages), but what it lacks in complexity it makes up for with sensitivity and diversity. Lander is a lovely young man who has been bullied in his home town. It’s bullying that leads him to accept a dare that sends him into the woods.

Once Lander is alone in the forest he’s heard so much about, the reader is made aware that he lives with panic and anxiety. Bailo does a great job of describing the sense of impending doom with no real cause that can be a symptom of panic and anxiety disorders. I loved the author’s description of the beginning of one of Lander’s attacks as his body reacting as though something is wrong even when there’s nothing there to be afraid of.

The diversity in this story is great! Lander is a young gay man who has always perceived himself to be different from other men. Lander is primarily raised by his Aunt who is a trans woman. She has experienced transphobia but is the person closest to Lander. Yban is demisexual and it is explained in a very sensitive and gentle way.

Ultimately, this story has a great message about using your talents and skills to be yourself. If you are yourself, you will find the path that you are meant to be on. This is a warm and emotional happy-ever-after. It has some very spicy sex scenes too!
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I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Welp, that was a bummer... My first EARC provided by NetGalley that I DNF'd. Sadly, I couldn't continue this book primarily because of its writing style. I hated the continuous "he did this... then he did this...he picked up this...". I missed internal monologues and diverse sentence structures to create some sort of mystical feel to, not only the forest in which Lander is stuck but also his own character as he is, apparently, a mage of some sort? Or he has some kind of healing power at least. 

The reason why I at least gave this book 3 stars despite DNF'ing it is because of the anxiety rep. I did like Lander's character being angsty and needing some kind of "potion" to keep his anxiety under control. However, that's about it. I disliked Yban's character from the gecko. His first conversation with Lander by the fire is just him trying to shut up Lander and shaming him for being too eager to flipping trying to make sense of what's going on? They're talking about this flower when Lander wants to know why it's hanging on everyone's door and all Yban says is "will you let me finish?" GOD, SURE DAD. I don't know. Characters like that always rub me the wrong way.

Is it a "it's not you, it's me" kind of book? I don't know. I guess, considering the other reviews published about this book? Still, I didn't care for it.
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Thanks to Netgalley for the complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

This story was super sweet and had the fairy tale feeling that I was looking for. The forest felt like another character without being cheesy. The details about Lander's anxiety and his healing magic as well as Yban's backstory made them fully fleshed out characters. I loved watching them slowly getting more comfortable with each other as they each revealed their pasts and quirks. 

Since it was mostly just the two of them in the forest for the majority of the story, I thought the relationship would feel forced (if you were lost/trapped in a forest with no signs of escape, wouldn't you cling to the first person that showed up?), but it wasn't at all. The passage of time felt real, as did their relationship.
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A sweet simple story and refreshing read I really enjoyed this book and it stayed with me after i finished its. I do like a slow burn fantasy book and this  ticked all the boxes. I loved Lander and Yban and there romance was so sweet  I would really recommend this book. 
I received this book from netgallery in exchange for a honest review
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Sweet and low angst story. Kind of simple, but sometimes that’s refreshing. I enjoyed watching the blossoming slow-burn relationship between Lander and Yban and learning more about the mythical history of the forest. Also really enjoyed the representation of someone with anxiety and someone who (though not specifically stated) appears to be demi-sexual. 

If you’re looking for an earnest and straightforward romance with a magical element definitely give this one a chance.
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