review: john dreamer


Title: John Dreamer
Author: Elise Celine
Publisher: AuthorBuzz
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Source: Review copy received from Netgalley – thank you!
Pages: 203
In a nutshell: meh
John Dreamer

Andy wasn’t usually sure about much, but she was absolutely certain this was the weirdest day of her life as she stood stranded in the middle of a great white room with six strangers. Well, they were mostly strangers. She could have sworn she’d seen the guy with the green eyes before, and maybe that was why he kept staring at her. 
When a man calling himself the Guardian appeared and said they had come to make their deepest dreams come true, they embark on an adventure none of them ever imagined, and the consequences of their actions would change them forever.
“John Dreamer” is the first in a series of books set in the confines of the Great White Room.

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My Thoughts

Okay, so I started reading this book not really knowing what to expect. Maybe I was hoping to find a new category in the fantasy genre. Anyways, I was magically attracted by the cover because, let’s face it, it is awesome which is why I requested a review copy on Netgalley. The problem however is, that basically, the plot does not really do justice to the cover.
Right from the beginning I was struggling to grab hold of the characters’ personalities, to be even interested in them but they were all so plain vanilla. Don’t get me wrong but for me, they just incorporated some character traits that are totally overrated (you know that cliche where the rich girl suddenly shows her true colors or where the nerd turns into a superhero?). The book is about seven kids, suddenly finding themselves in a dream place, not knowing why and how they got in there and how to get out of this place. Sounds interesting? Well, the synopsis is definitely misleading. I was hoping for something action packed or so with some cute romance in it but NADA. I felt like the story was going nowhere, like I was reading seven individual short stories that were totally incoherent. The book is more about individual unconventional therapy sessions than really dreams. To make it clear: These seven kids suffer from inferiority complexes and to get out, they need to find self-acceptance. Ugh. Pretty sappy, right?
There were things in the story that really bugged me right from the beginning. Such as the setting. The whole story takes place in a white room. Seriously? I don’t know exactly if I was hoping for something bigger to come but looking back, I should’ve been put off by this fact already. But no, my reader heart was just too curious to not read the book. After a while, the setting gets really depressive. There’s something clinical about it (I mean, most hospital rooms are white, right?) that makes the story impalpable or intangible. In fact, the story was totally surreal for me; it even bordered on illogicality. I can’t describe the feeling.
Also, the romance totally failed. I mean, sure, Andy is all swoony when it comes to John (who also happens to be very handsome and attractive), but yet I was hoping for that one moment that would set the plot into motion. (Yes, after a while Andy is convinced she’ll never be able to have a normal life again without John). And then of course, Andy is described to be a totally innocent and oh-so-lovely character. Meh. Needless to say, I was more than disappointed by the secondary characters. They all have different personalities which means a lot of trouble of course (not even in a negative way) but out of the blue they suddenly call themselves friends. Again: How can you suddenly be fond of a person you have just despised?
Finally, the story background. Not all books are supposed to have a deeper meaning/purpose but this one left me vacuous. I mean, we don’t even find out why these seven kids end up being in this Dream Place. Sure, it’s about conquering their inner fears but what for? Let me get this straight, I do have my inner fears as well but I don’t need any help from some random guys to accept myself.

Maybe I’m just too dumb to understand such dream place settings, to distinguish between reality and dreams. Ultimately, the book did keep me entertained for a few hours although the plot just did not work out for me. So overall, the book was so-so. Another lesson I’ve learned: Never be fooled by a pretty cover.


Special thanks to Netgalley and AuthorBuzz for providing me with a review copy!


4 thoughts on “review: john dreamer

  1. Totally agree with you on the cover thing. I’m always so disappointed when the story doesn’t work out in spite of great covers.

    1. Yes, too bad I can’t help but judge a book by its cover (at least when buying it 😀 ). I mean I really liked the idea of the book but it just didn’t work out for me.

  2. The same thing happened to me with the first book of the “Iron Witch” series by Karen Mahoney. I truly like the cover but the story is lame, though they are related to each other. Not even a bit innovative. Clichés on every site. The protagonist is walking self-pity. Urgh.
    So, never mind. We all have our literary mistakes. 🙂

    1. Ugh that sucks! And I totally know what you mean. I’m so done with those self-pitying main characters (who also often tend to fail to notice that they’re oh-so-pretty). I mean, I don’t even understand why the editors don’t intervene in such cases! I always feel so FOOLED by the book publishers!

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