Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Dream Boy by Madelyn Rosenberg and Mary Crockett

Dream Boy by Mary Crockett and Madelyn Rosenberg
Available July 1st
Pre-order Amazon/ Kindle/ BN/ Book Depository
Indiebound/ Kobo
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire 
Paperback 336 pages
Reviewed E-ARC provided by publisher for review
YA Magical Realism
Series??? I believe it's a stand alone

Goodreads-Annabelle Manning feels like she’s doing time at her high school in Chilton, Virginia. She has her friends at her lunchtime table of nobodies. What she doesn’t have are possibilities. Or a date for Homecoming. Things get more interesting at night, when she spends time with the boy of her dreams. But the blue-eyed boy with the fairytale smile is just that—a dream. Until the Friday afternoon he walks into her chemistry class. 

One of friends suspects he’s an alien. Another is pretty sure it’s all one big case of deja vu. While Annabelle doesn’t know what to think, she’s willing to believe that the charming Martin Zirkle may just be her dream come true. But as Annabelle discovers the truth behind dreams—where they come from and what they mean—she is forced to face a dark reality she had not expected. More than just Martin has arrived in Chilton. As Annabelle learns, if dreams can come true, so can nightmares.

So, this was not at all like I expected. Though the characters in the book are in their junior year of high school, they seem much younger, maybe 15 or so. And the danger/tension factor wasn't quite there like I had hoped it would be.  Fun facts, if you are at all familiar with the Roanoke area of Virginia was reading about the places that were an actual part of Roanoke. TEXAS TAVERN which, in the book was THE TEXAS GRILL.  It was described right down to the clientele and the cook. And the football teams. My husband was quite distressed (my words not his) when Chilton (the fictional high school in this book) trounced his real high school team, Cave Spring because he played on the team. Oh and Mill Mountain Coffee, love getting coffee there! My in-laws live in Roanoke and only drink decaff. I don't do decaff in the mornings so Mill Mountain is a favorite place to go for my caffeine fix. Overall though, it was an interesting concept, though complex, with curious characters and a plot that will definitely pique your senses if dreams appeal to you in any way.


To me, the most fascinating character in this novel was Will, Annabelle's best friend since kindergarten. He wears funny t-shirts with sayings like, "I listen to bands that don't exist yet." He is a photographer and he makes a pact with Annabelle that if they don't have dates for Homecoming in ten days, they will go together, "just as friends", you know. They type Morse Code on each other's legs to communicate silently. They text each other to talk during a conversation at the lunch table. Will knows just what Annabelle needs He's always got Annabelle's back watching over her even after she finds a date to Homecoming and it isn't him. 

Friends play an important role in this novel. Annabelle has a core group of two girlfriends and then Will, who is her best friend, then Will has his friend Paolo. Will has taken Annabelle's little brother under his wing and they harass each other back and forth, calling each other names. And Annabelle's mom is there, present for curfews and boys in her room and soccer practice and games. Family comes in all shapes and sizes and in this book, it shows that family is bigger than just Annabelle, her brother Nick and her mother.

The real drama of the novel is about dreams. And nightmares. And though we want all our dreams to come true, if they do, does that also mean our nightmares will come true? In the town of Chilton, it's something you need to consider. Annabelle has a unique capability but doesn't know it until it's almost too late. When she learns a little about controlling it, it is at the very end of the novel and I think there is a lot left unanswered that another book would cover. The general large questions are covered, but there are a lot of whys? and hows? that are not answered. I am not sure if there is another book in the works or not.

Who would enjoy this novel? Anyone that loves YA with a hint of magical realism. If you have an interest in dreams this novel has a very compelling and twisty plot involving dreams and nightmares. There is a light romance, yes there is a triangle, but it's fairly obvious who the front runner is even if Annabelle isn't aware of it for quite some time. This is a clean read, just a bit of kissing and a small dollop of humor and even less of mean girl, but their is a good reason for that. It's a very imaginative story.

I received a copy of this novel from the publisher for review. I was not compensated for my review. The opinions expressed are my own.

Find the Authors
Mary Crockett- Twitter @marylovesbooks
Madelyn Rosenberg- Twitter@madrosenberg


  1. Oh this one sounds interesting. You had me at magical realism. I don't think I've read too many in the YA genre. *thinks* Can't think of one so for that reason alone, I should read it. :D I do think that some of the unanswered whys would bother me, but hopefully not too much. :)

  2. I just reviewed this title as well, and to put it bluntly, I didn't like it. It's just too boring for my taste. I do like it that the setting is based on real life and that you were able to connect to the places that were mentioned in the book. Will is my favorite character as well. It's a shame that I didn't like Annabelle just as much.

  3. This book annoyed me to no end. I wanted to throw things at Annabelle and Martin/Josh just felt off. I did love Will, however. I thought it was very original/unique but I'm kind of sad to see all the hype it was getting.


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