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.
Description taken from Goodreads. I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley. This in no way impacts my review. These opinions are my own.
Dream Boy. This book has continually been on my mind ever since I saw the (gorgeous) cover reveal over at Icey Books. I love how iconic everything is on the cover and the details and colors both contribute really nicely to the book itself to work together and make everything more appealing and stronger. I can’t wait to see this book out in print, but until then I’ve got my ARC copy to hold me over. To find out more about Mary, Madelyn and Dream Boy, you can read my interview with Mary here.
The very first thing I noticed when I read this book is that it reminds me of a certain anime and manga that is escaping my memory right now where a girl meets a boy who is from her dreams. The boy has come to save her from demons who want her powers.
Once I got past the initial expectations about how I thought this book would be, I got to really enjoy it a lot. I still noticed the similarities between DREAM BOY and the anime, but that made the book stronger as the things I liked about it stood out more, but the things I disliked stood out more as well.
One thing I loved was the characters. They completely blew me away. The friendships were lasting, the love-triangle wasn’t annoying, the romance was sweet, all the characters were fleshed out and the supporting characters had as much detail to them as the main characters. The relationships were all fun and messy and realistic. I think the one relationship I love the most was the relationship between Will and Annabelle.
You know, I don't think it's the romance relationships I love the most in books. I love the good friend relationships the most.
— Eli Madison (@elimadison2019) July 1, 2014
This realization ^ (that I love well-done friend relationships often times more than romance relationships in books) dawned on me as I was writing this review and thinking about Will and Annabelle. Will is smart, clever and charming as a friend. The two of them have their ups and downs, but they’re always friends–and maybe even something more.
I did have a few problems with the characters. Some of them were more annoying than others, some of their “realness” got to me, and let me just say that I am not a fan of Martin Zirkle.
The other dreams of Annabelle’s though, the good, the bad, the ugly, the weird, all the nightmares and dreams, were all extremely interesting and contributed to the book’s unique premise and plot. I loved the humor to this story brought by mostly Annabelle, who proves to be a reliable and fun narrator through this well-thought-out course of events. There are a few slow parts, but those are mainly to provide things like details, world-building and to give a full scope of what’s going on, so I didn’t mind that so much. Plus the prose and the writing are (most of the time) beautifully done and there are plenty of underline-worthy quotes. One of my only regrets for this book was that it couldn’t be just a little longer! The ending was good, but it felt rushed and there were certain questions I had that weren’t answered. 4.5 stars.
pg count for the paperback: 336