Author: Malcolm Devlin
Released: April 12, 2022
And Then I Woke Up is the latest novel by Malcolm Devlin, though if I’m being honest, it is also the first novel I’ve read by this author. However, when I saw the pitch for this book, I knew I had to read it. Anytime you promise me a book that reads like a Mira Grant or Stephen Graham Jones novel, I’m there.
What would you do if you could no longer believe your world’s perception? Would you consider the words of others, or would you go on trusting your flawed senses? This is a question countless people will have to answer as a new disease tears through the world.
Are those that believe monsters are accurate (and actively hunting) right, or are they sick? Can their world or perspective be trusted? Is the cure justified? Or is something more significant, something deeper, happening?
“I was, in my own mind, already a survivor. I was already used to looking out for myself and keeping away from the deep gravity wells of other people’s trouble.”
Wow. And Then I Woke Up is a book that can quickly turn readers on their heads, making them question up from down and right from left. I am confident that this is the book’s goal, and boy, does it succeed.
It also weighs somewhat heavily on the heart since much of the discourse is focused on contagious diseases and their perception of them. I adore that And Then I Woke Up opened the door for these conversations while still feeling the emotional toll they go hand-and-hand with.
And Then I Woke Up is both allegorical and thoughtful. It’s designed to elicit an emotional response from the reader while also forcing them to sit down and think. I rather love that combination, though I’ve never experienced it in these measures before. That’s part of the delight of And Then I Woke Up; it is so very different.
The horror elements are the icing on the cake or the zombie brain on the pavement. Whichever turn of phrase you prefer. Oddly enough, the more graphic elements of this novella help provide a grounding effect for everything else going on. A starting point for which everything follows.
So, having read And Then I Woke Up, does it live up to the promises made in the pitch? I would have to say yes! I’m going to be keeping an eye on Malcolm Devlin’s works from here on out.
Thanks to Tor.com and #NetGalley for making this book available for review. All opinions expressed are my own.