November 8, 2011

Tween Tuesday Audio Book Review: Dreamland

Tween Tuesday is the day I like to step back and make sure to focus on Tween Reads.  Those books perfect for the tween set.  
Tween Tuesday was started by Greenbeanteenqueen.

Title: Dreamland
Author: Alyson Noel
Publisher: Macmillan Young Listener
Narrator: Kathleen McInerney
Riley’s finding that the afterlife can be a lonely place when all you do is focus on work. So she goes to the place where dreams happen, hoping to find a way to contact her sister, Ever. She meets the director, who tells her about the two ways to send dreams. As a Dream Jumper, a person can jump into a dreamer’s dream, share a message, and participate. As a Dreamweaver, an entire dream can be created in a studio and sent to the dreamer. But Dreamweaving was outlawed decades ago, and the studio was boarded up. Thinking it’s her only way to reach out to her sister, Riley goes in search of the old studio. There she finds a ghost boy, who’s been creating and sending nightmares to people for years. In order to stop him and reach out to Ever, Riley is going to have to confront and overcome her own fears.

Audio Review

I thought that Kathleen McInerney  did a fantastic job reading Dreamland.  She nailed the voice of Riley very well.  She had to convey the voice of a 12 year girl, and that's something not all "grown ups" could do convincingly.  She did.  I completely bought into her being Riley.  the other voices she did well too.  Each one was unique and seemed to fit how I would imagine it.  I had no problems with the audio book at all.  Very well done.

Book Review

The books in the Riley Bloom series are really quick reads.  They are short books that basically focus on one big incident involving Riley.  This one was no different.  Riley has the tendency to no listen to anyone around her.  She rarely heeds their advice and almost always does the opposite.  The good side of this is that she's determined and does not give up on her goal.  This is great when she's soul catching (her job), but in her own (after)life this isn't so good.  It makes her seem very self centered and at times rude.  I personally really struggles her he when she was like this.  It's so clear to me the adult reader that she needs to change her behavior, so I had a hard time being patient with her as she did things that were so completely wrong or done for the wrong reasons.  I just wanted to yell at her and tell her to stop focusing on herself and look at everyone around her!  I'll be honest - it was good this book was short because Riley was starting to drive me nuts at the end.  I don't how much more I could have read.

Now the book wasn't bad! It had lots of interesting twists, and I really loved the concept of the place of Dreamland in the book.  It was all about dreams and using them to help the living move on or let go or make that one last connection.  Very cool concept that I thought was very well described and put together.  I would've loved to  have visited it.

I also liked "ghost boy" she met who sends the nightmares.  His character, to me, was the most complex and interesting.  I'd love to see him show up in a later book just because I want to know more about what happens to him.  He kind of made the book for me.

For the Guys? No not really.  It's all about Riley trying to turn into a teenage girl.  Not guy stuff.

Final Thought: I loved the place of Dreamland and I know my middle school girls will enjoy it.
Best stick-with-you image: Riley being nailed to the stage with her mouth stapled shut
Best for reader who: Have read the rest of the series
Best for ages: 10-14


  1. Thanks for the review. I enjoyed the first book in the series but haven't read any of the others. Glad to know I could listen to them while I walk.