Released March 31, 2011
Caitlyn Monahan knows she belongs somewhere else. It’s what her dead mother’s note suggested, and it’s what her recurring nightmares allude to. Desperate to flee these terrifying dreams—and her small town—she accepts a spot at a boarding school in France. Only, when she arrives, her nightmares get worse.
But then there are her amazing dreams, so vivid and so real, with visits from an alluring, mysterious, and gorgeous Italian boy from the 1500s. Caitlyn knows they are soul mates, but how can she be in love with someone who exists only in her dreams?
Then, as her reality and dream world collide, Caitlyn searches for the real reason why she was brought to this school. And what she discovers will change her life forever.
The reviews are in!
The Story Siren says, “Ghosts, romance, an intriguing history and a mystery hundreds of years old…. yeah I’m going to say it again. AWESOME.”
5 Cupids at Fragments of Life: “Intricately woven with shocking and unpredictable secrets and revelations, this is one of the most compelling paranormal romances out there. The best ghost novel in YA is finally here!”
5 lanterns is the verdict at Truth Be Told: “…a completely enticing romantic read that I want to dive into over and over again. I was so swept up into the mystery of the book and the romance that I found myself thinking about it even when I wasn’t reading.”
Bloggers <Heart> Books says, “This was a beautiful, beautiful read. I completely adored it. The romance was SO well done.”
“Lisa Cach has a beautiful writing style, with elegant clear descriptions and scorching dialogue. This will not be the last of her novels I check out. I highly recommend WAKE UNTO ME, especially if you’re interested in history and a healthy dose of paranormal,” is the opinion at The Publication Follies of Alexandra Shostak.
“…absolutely extraordinary. Rating: A++” from Katie’s Book Blog.
The Book Butterfly says, “How can you not be interested in a novel where treasure had been hunted since the Crusades and where ghosts are said to haunt the grounds? More please!”
5/5 at The Crazy Bookworm: “(Lisa Cach)…created such a beautiful world that it was nearly impossible to stop reading. …What I disliked: That it ended.”
Kate at The Neverending Shelf says, “I don’t know how Cach did it, but she effortlessly created a YA paranormal romance that is nothing like I have ever read before. Twists that I did not see coming for a mile away. A romance that is beautiful in its simplicity. Not too over the top. Chemistry and longing that will leave you breathless.”
365 Days of Reading calls Wake Unto Me, “…an exciting mystery with a few added bonuses—a beautiful yet creepy foreign setting and a delicious romance.”
5/5 in Australia at Nice Girls Read Books : “I can’t really put into words how brilliant and well thought out this book was! …It was completely original.”
5/5 at Call Me Crazy: “I set high expectations and thankfully they were greatly surpassed. …pure genius.”
5/5 at The Book Mermaid: “…it was all heart pounding action and mystery. This is the type of book I’ve been waiting for such a long time to read!
The Book Pixie declares: “…the thrilling and chilling Gothic YA… that surprised me by being much more than just a paranormal romance. Wake Unto Me is richly layered with paranormal, historical, mystery, and romance elements. While this may sound overambitious, Cach pulls it all off, weaving everything together seamlessly and in a way that kept me hungry for more.”
My Love Affair with Books says, “This book combines 3 things I love – gothic suspense, history and France. Of course, I love this book!”
5 Stars at Proud Book Nerd
“…a fresh breath of air in the YA paranormal genre!” is the conclusion at Fantastic Book Review.
5 Bites at Books With Bite: “I could not, would not, put this book down.”
4.5/5 at Ece red YA book blog: “Before I knew it, I was half-way done with the book and I could have sworn I had just started it.”
Meaghan at A Bookworm’s Haven says, “Being taken by surprise is amazing… and this book did that to me repeatedly. Especially at the end, holy cow! …a haunting tale of self discovery, mystery and romance…”
YA librarian Jessica Miller says, “…fulfilled everything that was promised. …*so good*”
5 crowns from the blog of Bookaholic Lis in Brazil
4/5 at Windowpane Memoirs: “The romance in the story is elegant and tender.”
5/5 at The Bo0ki3: “Wake Unto Me was more than I had hoped for and I hope there will be a part two. I would recommend this book to anyone, I don’t care what kind of books you normally read, Wake Unto Me is one that you don’t want to miss.”
Wake Unto Me
Chateau de la Fortune, France
“Is she the one?”
Eugenia Snowe felt an unsettling mix of distaste and compassion as she picked up the photo that she and the other women of the Sisterhood had been staring at. In it, Caitlyn Monahan, a fifteen-year-old American girl with long black hair and a pale face, held a notebook to her chest, her shoulders hunched, her hair half-
concealing her features.
“Maybe,” Eugenia replied. Caitlyn wore her insecurity like a coat, on the outside for all to see. Eugenia loathed weakness in women.
On the other hand, this girl had likely grown up suffering severe feelings of alienation from the mundane people around her, so it was little wonder that she should be a miserable creature. According to what the private investigator had uncovered, Caitlyn had no one in her life who could possibly understand what she truly was.
What she might be, Eugenia corrected herself. They didn’t know yet if Caitlyn was one of them.
“We can’t be certain that Caitlyn is one of our lost sisters,” Eugenia said aloud. “Genealogy can take us only so far. Her family tree on her mother’s side is spotted with uncertainties; we have had to make calculated guesses about her heritage, based on what records we can find. She may be nothing more than an average teenage girl.”
“But your great-grandmother’s prophecy of the Dark One,” Greta Klenk said, her plump, kindly face filled with anxious hope, “it seems to fit her.” She recited the verse they all knew by heart:
“From the New World’s western shore
Comes a Dark One, young and poor,
Black of hair and pale of face,
Without bidding she will chase
The source of Sisters’ power real
In the heart of Fortune’s wheel.
Only when this Dark One’s found
Can our powers be unbound.
“It speaks of someone with dark hair, from the western shores of the New World, just like this Caitlyn Monahan,” Greta said.
“Yes, but that is no guarantee that Caitlyn is the Dark One, or even that Caitlyn is one of us. We cannot make her the girl of the prophecy simply by wishing it,” Eugenia said. She tightened her jaw, tamping down her impatience. She had spent her whole life trying to decode her English great-grandmother’s short, prophetic verse, and to find the heart of Fortune’s wheel herself, and with it the original source of the Sisterhood’s psychic powers.
She hadn’t found it; she hadn’t even figured out exactly what Fortune’s wheel was supposed to be, other than a figurative idea about the goddess Fortuna, or possibly a reference to the legend of a Templar treasure buried beneath the castle. Her failure to solve the puzzle had forced her to practice both humility and patience, neither of which suited her temperament. She had, at last, turned her efforts to finding the Dark One. Caitlyn was her best hope of being that long-sought girl.
“She looks like nothing,” Marguerite Pelletier sneered, her hands on her slender, hard hips. The riding instructor had a sharp-featured face and black slashes of eyebrows that scowled her disapproval. “She does not look like anything special. I don’t think she’s the Dark One, nor do I think we should take a chance on her. This is our first time trying to bring a lost sister to the Fortune School, and she seems a very bad bet. We should only bring girls who have culture and sophistication, who will fit in well with the regular, “ordinary” paying students.”
“But the prophecy says she’ll be poor,” Greta said. “Caitlyn is poor.”
The group of eight women looked to Eugenia for guidance. At thirty-five years old she was the youngest of them, but she was also the strongest. She was their leader.
A DNA test could tell the Sisterhood for certain whether Caitlyn was related to them, but it would not answer the most crucial questions: Had Caitlyn inherited any psychic gifts? If so, were they of a strength worth developing? And most important of all, was Caitlyn the Dark One of the prophecy?
There was no way to know, at least not yet. They had to bring Caitlyn to Chateau de la Fortune
and let the girl prove her worth. If Caitlyn was the Dark One, she would lead them to the heart of Fortune’s wheel.
“I have goals for the Sisterhood that will never be met by playing it safe,” Eugenia said at last. “We will bring Caitlyn here, to Chateau de la Fortune, where we can discover firsthand whether or not she is the one we seek.”
“And if Caitlyn is not the Dark One?” Marguerite demanded. “Or if she is not a true member of the Sisterhood? What do we do with her then?”
Eugenia shrugged one elegant shoulder, dismissing the issue and the girl. “We get rid of her. If she’s not the Dark One, she doesn’t matter, does she?”
Marguerite grunted her approval.
Eugenia lips twitched in amusement. Marguerite: so quick to anger, and yet so easily manipulated. Eugenia hadn’t even had to reach into Marguerite’s mind to make her behave. It had only taken words.
Too bad. She enjoyed practicing her gift for mind control
and welcomed every chance to hone her skills. She couldn’t yet achieve total control over another person, unfortunately. But she could nudge, and implant an impulse. Coupled with old-fashioned verbal persuasion and Eugenia’s extensive training in psychology, there were few who could resist bending to her will.
When Eugenia at last found the heart of Fortune’s wheel and the Sisterhood’s source of power was unbound, though, she was certain that her powers would be doubled. Trebled, even. With greater power, no one would even think to obstruct her, and she could begin in earnest her work to bring the Sisterhood to eminence. The Sisterhood would become a force to be reckoned with. There were no limits to what they might achieve, or to the influence they might wield. With Eugenia as its leader, the Sisterhood could alter the course of the world itself.
“No one matters,” Eugenia said again, her voice as cold as steel. “No one, except the Dark One.”
October 15, Oregon
Caitlyn’s pencil moved over the paper in harsh, rapid dashes. A picture began to emerge: flames, smoke. A face in agony. A stake of wood.
Caitlyn’s breath came in short gasps as her pencil brought the image from last night’s eerie dream to life. She felt the heat of the flames against her own skin, the smoke choking her, her lungs searing as she gasped in great gulps of burning air. Panic flooded her body as she fought against the ropes that bound her to the stake. She was desperate for escape, desperate for someone in the jeering crowd beyond the flames to scream out against the wrong that was being done to her.
“Hey,” a panting male voice said, the sound impinging on the edges of Caitlyn’s awareness. She ignored it and kept drawing.
Caitlyn could feel the thoughts of the woman being burned at the stake. It was no use. She was not one of them. Always an outsider, she had suffered their fear and their hatred for her her whole life. And now they had finally found a way to be rid of her forever: Witch, they called her.
“Whatcha drawing?” the same male voice asked.
With that one word, they were free to destroy her. Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live . . .
“Yo!” A large pale hand appeared between her face and her art journal, waving back and forth. “You in there?”
The crackling flames of the medieval pyre faded into the squeaking of tennis shoes on the gym floor. Annoyed, Caitlyn Monahan looked up from the journal in her lap, blinking herself back to present reality. Pete Fipps, strands of his dark hair plastered to his temples with sweat, was breathing at her. What did he want? Probably to make fun of her, as usual.
“You really like to draw, huh?”
“Yes.” Caitlyn slipped her bookmark—a tarot card of the Wheel of Fortune—into the journal, closed the cover, and pulled it up against her chest. Without her noticing, practice had started for the boys’ varsity basketball team. Caitlyn’s perch at the end of the fifth row of the bleachers was no longer a quiet, private place to wait for her friends Sarah and Jacqui.
“What were you drawing?”
She felt the intrusion of his gaze
and was vaguely threatened by his looming closeness. She wished he’d go away. “Nothing.”
Caitlyn remained silent, entranced by a big zit on the side of his neck, the red spot brilliant against his pale skin.
“You must have been drawing something.”
Caitlyn held the journal more tightly to her chest, her shoulders hunching. “Just . . . someone I saw in a dream last night.”