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Ash is a teenage girl who is angry at the world. Angry at her mom for dying and leaving her alone. Angry at her dad for refusing to take her in. And especially angry at her cousin Nina for having everything.
That kind of anger inevitably draws attention. The problem is, the spirit who first noticed Ash’s anger is now focused on Nina. Can Ash figure out what is going on and find it in her heart to save her cousin?
This has always been one of my least favorite of de Lint’s books. Much as I love his work, I’m usually disappointed in his young adult novels. I love his books for his characters and I never relate to the teens very well. I don’t know if it’s just me or if he truly doesn’t develop them as well. In this case, Ash is a pretty typical troubled teen and Nina is a pretty typical goody-two-shoes. So maybe it is him…
Anyway, there’s nothing terribly new here, although it was nice to come across the first references to Cassie and Bones. The underlying hope and faith in human decency that I consider another hallmark of de Lint are also here. The world can always use more stories about forgiveness, love, and the power to change for the better, right?
I wouldn’t recommend this to a new de Lint reader, but fans should definitely read it.
Read my review of the first book set in Newford, Dreams Underfoot.
Read an excerpt.
Buy The Dreaming Place at
I have an affiliate relationship with Malaprop’s, my local independent bookstore located in downtown Asheville, NC; and Better World Books. I will receive a small commission at no cost to you if you purchase books through links on my site.