12 July 2012

YA Book Review: The Dream Slayer by Jill Cooper

Release Date: 29 June 2012
Publisher: Self-published
Source: SupaGirl Book Tours

Book Description:
When your dreams come true, sometimes you get more than you bargained for...

Natalie Johnson has always dreamed she’s someone else; calm, beautiful, in control. A chosen warrior with a maniacal arch nemesis and a dreamy boyfriend, the type that can make your knees quiver and your heart melt. Real life is much different. She’s tormented by a bully and endures the sharp tongue of her father, but finds solace in her dreams. When her bully ends up dead, de ja vu from a dream hits her hard as everything around her begins to fall apart. Whatever killed Sarah in her dreams is now in reality, hunting her from the shadows. And it wants her dead. Somehow as the lines between reality and nightmare blur, Natalie must discover hidden strength to pull her friends and family back from the brink of madness.
My Thoughts...
The Dream Slayer's description in immensely intriguing and right away sounds like something new and different in the world of YA.  The idea of a collision between your unconscious dreaming and real life is interesting in and of itself, but the description begs the question of just how the two become connected in the first place and just what catastrophic things can/will happen when the two worlds begin to bleed into each other.  With its intriguing premise and gorgeous cover, The Dream Slayer promises and delivers an action-packed adventure full of high-school angst, kick-butt "battle" scenes, and just a smidgen of romance.

I have to admit up front that the first half of this book had me confused.  So, without ruining the story and the eventual reveal, let me just say this: stick with it.  There were times when I felt like putting the book down because I was so confused.  Thankfully the second half of the book draws the story together and then propels the read into and through an action-packed second half.

Natalie was a really interesting character to read because the Slayer Natalie of her dreams and the Real Natalie of Meadow Creek are so different that it's difficult at times to draw the two together as the same person. The Slayer Natalie is fierce and independent, which is fun to read in any female character.  The Real Natalie is more reserved but still fierce in her own way.  The Real Natalie has to deal with the harsh realities of life--from being slightly overweight to an abusive father and a passive mother. Her coping mechanism has been to (sub-consciously) create Slayer Natalie--the kick-butt demon slayer with a happy family.

Without giving too much away, I have to say that The Dream Slayer definitely lives up to its promise as a unique story.  The world and its characters are refreshing, albeit at times confusing.  While I struggled to get through the first half of the book, the second half was filled with action, adventure, and romance--enough of all three to keep me turning the pages.

Be sure to check out this month's blog tour for The Dream Slayer!


Danny Bookworm said...

Interesting! I love new concept and refreshing reads and this spilt personality thingy sounds great! I haven't had this book on my radar, but I do add it now to my pile! Thanks!


Great review. I did end up liking it too. It was very confusing in the beginning though.

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