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Reviewed by Brittney Rossie for Readers' Favorite
Waking Under Water by Christine H Bailey was a rare and poignant glimpse inside the daily life of a teen who is not only struggling through typical teen transitions, relationships, and high school drama but also misdiagnosis, bullying and depression. Mia, the main character, is introduced to us just as she is being thrust into a new environment. She gone from "it girl" on top to a stigmatized "train wreck" in the course of a year. She is trying to recover but it's not easy when her depression meds are throwing off everything, making it hard to judge new relationships, focus on school work, and live in general. Mia's struggle is exacerbated by betrayals and she must make hard decisions with the information she has, which isn't much from where she sits.
Bailey shared Mia’s story in such a way that I wanted to slow down and pay attention. I read a lot of ARCs and this one compelled me to pay attention to each character and enjoy the unfolding journey of Mia on the road to recovery and navigating very real and very messy relationships. It's not often that a book makes me feel real feelings about the characters. I felt like I was looking into a real person’s life and watching them struggle to come up for air, for reprieve in their life while being battered by the crushing waves that life sometimes deals us - that’s how real and believable these characters were. Waking Under Water earned a solid 5 stars from me and Bailey has earned a legit fan.