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I Belong

Review: Dreamland by Robert L. Anderson


AuthorRobert L. Anderson

Genre: YA Fantasy

Series: N/A

Publication Date: September 22, 2015

Format: Hardcover, 332 Pages

ISBN-10: 0062338676 (HarperTeen)

ISBN-13: 978-0062338679 (HarperTeen)

Reviewed by: Kaitlin


Odea Donahue has been able to travel through people’s dreams since she was six years old. Her mother taught her the three rules of walking: Never interfere. Never be seen. Never walk the same person’s dream more than once. Dea has never broken the rules.

Then a mysterious new boy, Connor, comes to town. For the first time in her life, Dea feels normal. But both Dea and Connor have secrets, and as she is increasingly drawn to Connor’s dreams—and nightmares—the boundary between worlds begins to deteriorate, putting everyone she loves in danger.

Quick & Dirty: A chilling novel about a dreamwalker and the consequences of her breaking the rules.

Opening Sentence: “Freaks.”

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Dea can walk dreams. Along with her mother, they travel from city to city, never settling. Dea knows the rules of dreamwalking: never get spotted. Never travel the same person’s dream more than once. Never interfere. When Dea breaks a rule after she creates a connection with a boy named Connor, her whole life comes unraveling at the seams. It begins when strange monsters stalk her sleeping (and waking) moments. And then everything begins to crumble as Dea struggles to fix her mistakes and save those whom she loves.

Dreamland caught my eye from the beginning. It’s cover, a dreary landscape juxtaposed by the skyscrapers hanging from above, was overlaid with a dark color scheme that spoke of intrigue and suspense. And then, that tagline: dreams come true. So do nightmares. I mean, how could one not be drawn in? Luckily enough, I got my hands on a copy of the galley and started reading almost immediately. It’s been a little bit since I read the novel, so I had to skim through to remember the events. Let me tell you, although there is a slow beginning, Dreamland has an abundance of chilling scenes and a beautiful alternate world of dreams that was so much fun to read about.

Connor is the love interest in this story, and I enjoyed their romance. They bonded in the classic way, a normal way, over conversations and cheeseburgers and the such. But as much as Dea tried to deny it, she wasn’t a normal girl, and her glimpses into Connor’s dreams were not normal either. And Connor is the beginning to her undoing – once she starts peeking into dreams more than once, the monsters begin to appear. Nevertheless, watching them work through difficult times together and grow as a couple was very cute. Connor was suffering from the death of his father, Dea was suffering from – well, a lot of unfortunate events were happening in her life. Although she had to keep secrets from Connor, and inevitably that backfires, I did like their story.

The dreams are such a cool, unique part of the novel that I really loved. I am really intrigued by dreams, and always have been. I love how all of the things I wish could happen in reality can come true when the line between sleeping and waking begins to blur. The idea of a girl who could walk dreams, and had a connection to dreams; that really lured me in. I thought the monsters that invaded and stalked through dreams was chilling enough, but the dreamscape expanded into a whole dreamworld. Though the story began somewhat slow, what an incredible ending – so much tension, and all my questions were answered.

Lets be real; my favorite genre is probably fantasy. But not just any fantasy; it has to be a fantasy with eerie, creepy suspense and chilling scenes. Probably why Splintered by Howard is so incredible to me and why I’ve read it numerous times over. Also, probably why I enjoyed this novel. I loved the main character, the plotline, and the complexity of the other characters. I loved the haunting betrayal, the lovely romance, and the intrigue of the dreams – so yes, I would encourage you to pick it up.

Notable Scene:

The lights. They would see the lights and know she had interfered.

They would find her.

She remembered what her mother had said all those years earlier: she must follow the rules or the monsters would find her.


FTC Advisory: HarperTeen provided me with a copy of Dreamland. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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