Today we are spotlighting Dreamer, the first book in the Dreambound series. The book, written by Nicole Thomas, is a young adult mystery/urban fantasy/sci-fi type mash-up. Dreamer releases TODAY, October 28, 2013.
About the Book
Author: Nicole Thomas
Pub Date: 10/28/13
Pages: 160 pages
Acquired: Author ARC
Book Pages: Amazon.com • Goodreads.com • Author’s Website
Book Type: YA, mystery, urban fantasy
Someone is using Anna’s dreams as a weapon, and so far, they’ve gotten away with murder. Anna isn’t quite sure why those closest to her die when she dreams, but it’s enough to turn this teenager off REM sleep and relationships for good. She has more than enough blood on her hands without boys crushing on her and getting buried six feet underground as a result.
As of right now, Anna’s plan to avoid relationships with anyone outside her family has gone off without a hitch. And if it weren’t for her classmate, Liam, she would’ve continued to do so. Liam’s successfully flown under her social radar, and if he wants to avoid having his obituary in the local newspaper, he’d keep it that way. But when he confides in Anna and tells her he has dreams as well, he becomes an exception to the rule.
Okay, so his dreams might not be as dangerous, but it turns out his mother’s were. Liam’s mom is missing. His mom just turned eighteen when she fell completely off the grid, and Anna could be next. (From Goodreads.com)
Anna started dreaming at age five. But, unlike most kids her age, her dreams weren’t innocent. They were dangerous dreams. The kind of dreams that get people killed.
Thirteen years and many foster families later, Anna is nearing her eighteenth birthday. She has avoided as many attachments as possible, save a six year old foster sibling named Mimi. Anna is looking to leave everyone she loves behind to protect them. But then she meets Liam. And he knows her secrets.
Liam and his parents are all dreamers. And Liam’s mom disappeared when he was a child. His father spent his life dedicated to finding out what they were, finding others like them, and trying desperately to find his missing wife.
Liam and Anna, along with Liam’s father, start a journey to figure out exactly what, or who, is controlling Anna’s dreams.
The thing I liked most about this book was the language. It was simple, straight-forward and really easy to follow. It had a good pace, flow, and kept you invested in the story. I think these things make the perfect combination for a younger-YA story. A lot of the younger YA I read doesn’t exactly relate to me — being in my twenties. But Anna and Liam’s story was really fascinating, and despite their ages, I felt confident that any class of YA readers would be interested.
Anna and Liam were sweet together. Even though some of the interactions were a bit stiff, I found myself smiling when they were together. They did act more like 14-15 year olds would in respect to the relationship side of things, but I think that speaks more to the characters’ personalities than the writing style.
Throughout the story, the characters’ motivations were plausible and the story flowed well. All the other characters in the book seemed very disconnected and background — the story mainly focused on Anna and Liam. And for this book, that was alright. Anna is a girl who has spent 13 years watching people die because of her dreams. And Liam is a boy who grew up with a father obsessed on finding his mother. Both didn’t really have time or energy to make proper social interactions. I do hope in the next segment we will begin to see more of the background characters flourish though. I think that will show the growth of our protagonists.
One thing that irks me with POV changes is when I can’t tell who I am reading. The voice needs to stick out and I need to clearly know what character I’m interacting with. And Thomas does a great job of this. I didn’t have any trouble figuring out if I was in Liam’s head or Anna’s.
I was quite surprised by the reveal of who/what was controlling Anna. I have to say, it isn’t one of the things I was thinking it would be. I love being caught off guard like that! And Thomas did really well with that plot twist — the story flowed very naturally and ended very strongly. I am definitely going to want to know what happens next!
Some of the things in this book remained at the surface; hopefully Thomas can find a way to dig deeper under the story as it expands into the next step in the series.
Overall, it was a quick read that I was easily (and quickly!) able to get invested in. I would definitely recommend to some of my younger YA readers and anyone who likes a fast-paced, intriguing mystery.
*I received this e-book in exchange for an honest review via the author.*
About the Author
Nicole Thomas has never grown out of her childhood, and likely never will. After spending years reenacting some scenes from her favorite books, she started to write stories of her own. That was over twenty years ago and way too many words to count.
When she isn’t writing, Nicole enjoys hiking, reading and playing video games with her husband.
Connect with Nicole