Rosalinda Fitzroy has been asleep for sixty-two years when she is woken by a kiss. Locked away in the chemically induced slumber of a stasis tube in a forgotten subbasement, sixteen-year-old Rose slept straight through the Dark Times that killed millions and utterly changed the world she knew. Now, her parents and her first love are long gone, and Rose -hailed upon her awakening as the long-lost heir to an interplanetary empire - is thrust alone into a future in which she is viewed as either a freak or a threat. Desperate to put the past behind her and adapt to her new world, Rose finds herself drawn to the boy who kissed her awake, hoping that he can help her to start fresh. But when a deadly danger jeopardises her fragile new existence, Rose must face the ghosts of her past with open eyes - or be left without any future at all.
I definitely was not expecting what I just read. This was anything but a fairytale of a beauty who has just awoken from a long slumber - this was the darkest book I think I have ever read and I'm still in a state of shock of the reality of it all. It's not just what's said in this book that is dark but almost just as much what is not said - it's the horrors of Rose's childhood, the naivety of not realising the depths of the situation and the point where it's finally sunk in what's happened and the repercussions of it.
This book is set in the future, but it doesn't rely on the use of fancy gadgets, hover cars and retinal scans to give depth to it, in fact the idea of the future is mentioned so casually that it doesn't even seem strange to be reading about it in this day and age. The flashbacks of Rose's haunted childhood is what gives body to the book, and through this, a lot of controversial yet relevant subjects are addressed. Sheehan's book doesn't necessarily follow a plot, instead it mainly follows the way Rose has her eyes opened to the tragedies that did indeed happen in her past, thread by thread removing the wool from her eyes. The only 'plot' was, as the blurb describes it, 'the deadly danger' that is after her which I thought wasn't really needed in the story. It was an unnecessary add on for such a strong emotional tale to start with and it seemed to me as if it was only added to give it some action and fast paced chase scenes which the majority tend to enjoy. I, however, felt it was irrelevant and that the story held it's own just on the emotional ground as on that level it was very heart wrenching and deep.
I found myself getting extremely attached to the characters. They each had their reasons for being the way they were by themselves and around others. I've read a few reviews about the fact that Rose is wimpy and falls in love too easily, but however much these facts are true, the reasons behind those characteristics are very prominent throughout the book and no character has feelings and emotions that don't have some consequence from something that has happened to them in the past.
If I would have known that this book was as deep and dark as it was I don't think I would have picked it up. I am so glad that I did as it's a well written piece of writing and so emotionally draining that I don't think I will forget this book in a hurry.