REVIEW - Dreams and Nightmares
Title: Dreams and Nightmares
Author: Ann Werner
On what feels like the worst day of her life, instead of getting an expected marriage proposal, Decker Jones is dumped by her boyfriend of three years. Her heartbreak is tempered with joy when she receives the news that after ten long years of trying to get noticed, top literary agent Lillian Cardone has agreed to represent her, moving her a giant leap forward towards the dream of becoming a bestselling author.
Albert Crawford is a career bank robber who is planning to retire to live the good life in Mexico after pulling one last job. Things go horribly wrong when a bank guard is killed. Three time loser Albert is arrested and sent to spend the rest of his life in prison. Two different people. Two different futures on a collision course. Neither can imagine what the future holds.
For most of the book, I had no idea how Albert and Decker’s lives would intersect. That Werner managed to keep that under wraps is impressive. The book shifts from one character’s story to another until they intersect in the last quarter of the book. The stories are interesting in their own right, but trying to sort out how they will come together – and then watching them collide – is what makes Dreams and Nightmares so compelling.
The story is well thought-out and well written. The characters are believable and the descriptions evocative.
I enjoyed this book a great deal and would recommend it to anyone who’s looking for a novel that’s neither fluffy nor weighty but just right.
Rating: 4 stars
Ebook Review - Trevor’s Song
Trevor’s Song by Susan Helene Gottfried
Trevor’s Song managed to take me completely by surprise. Trevor himself was the biggest surprise, being one of the most dysfunctional leads I’ve seen in a book in a long, long time. In the beginning, I didn’t even like him. He wasn’t what you might call a sympathetic character. But by the time I was halfway through the book, I was ready to shank anyone who so much as looked at him sideways. It was very interesting to watch his character grow and change (even if I sometimes wanted to smack some sense into him).
The characters, dialogue, and storyline are all above average, and Gottfried writes in a smooth, straightforward style. Even the minor characters have quirks and traits that make them stand out, and the major characters are fleshed out fairly well. The dialogue is believable (and often amusing), and the storylines are all compelling enough to keep you reading.
My complaints about this book are very minor ones. One was the way the backstory was handled. Fans who were introduced to the characters through Gottfried’s blog might not have the same issues as I did, but I felt like a little more explication would have been nice in places. I was glad, though, that Trevor’s entire backstory wasn’t hurled at the reader in one fell swoop. However, I felt a little loss now and again in the first quarter or so of the book. Another thing that added to that ‘being lost’ feeling in the early part of the book was the lack of anything to mark the passage of time. I didn’t notice any reference to the month or seasons or anything, but it’s obvious quite a bit of time passes in relatively few pages. This was a little confusing, but not enough to distract from the story. The last ‘negative’ about this book is that it could use another round of proofreading. I believe that almost every book has at least a few typographical errors, but I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that there are a number in this book.
Overall, I enjoyed this book quite a lot. Much more, in fact, than I thought I would when I first began reading it. It was a sometimes fun, sometimes heartbreaking story set against an irresistible backdrop of rock and roll and one of the better indie books I’ve read.
Rating: 4 stars