My rating: 0 of 5 stars
I came into this book with the greatest respect for KM Weiland: I love her beautiful website and she always has worthy advice for writers and writing in general.
Sadly, and despite the great concept, there was nothing in it to grab me, hold me, compel me to turn the pages.
The plot wasn’t complex, but I didn’t have a chance to get to know new characters or follow new concepts before the flow was interrupted: for example, the introduction of multiple characters in a single setting early in the story was filled with detailed description, sudden drama, more new characters, a new language, and inner musings: all in about two pages. It left me with no idea of setting, how many characters I met, or who matched which description.
There were other issues too: the idea that many will die as a result of what happened is obvious yet is explicitly repeated; or the antagonistic relationship between Chris and Allara that took a sudden and unjustified turn towards ‘feelings’.
Even straight-forward actions were confusing at times: “Orias crawled. Orias begged. He had no defense.” I took this literally – he was, after all, in the face of his enemies, and was probably about to die. So to find out half a page later he’s still atop his horse took me out of the story again while I corrected my mental image.
But Dreamlander has countless rave reviews, so perhaps it’s just me – after all I did see that ‘action-stop to internalize-action’ or ‘dialogue-stop to internalize-dialogue’ style similar to other popular stories (Red Queen, The Medoran Chronicles, and The Mapmaker Chronicles to name a few).
My favourite part of the book was a political conversation between Chris and Allara in the library with the oranges – it was nice, natural, and flowing. And I don’t even like politics!
But in the end, after two months of struggling to get to the 40% mark, I found I had no interest in the characters, their problems, or their world. And that’s a shame.
** Note I can’t give a rating to books I abandon