Monday, December 20, 2010

Tween dreams: adventures for a new year

The end of another year brings thoughts of what dreams may come. Every year we make plans and every year, it seems, plans have a way of escaping our grasp. But we keep dreaming! Here are some exciting books about characters who have unique dreams -- and some nightmares, too. Find copies using the Amazon and World Catalog search boxes here on BookBag, and be ready for some unusual fantasy ...

The Keepers' Tattoo, by Gill Arbuthnott (Chicken House) Fantasy. Fifteen-year-old Nyssa works in a tavern as a maid and cook, but in actuality, she is among the last descendants of an ancient civilization that Alaric, Archipelago's tyrannical ruler, is determined to obliterate. Only the strange tattoo on the back of her head and vivid, terrifying dreams connect Nyssa to her forgotten past. When Alaric's Shadowmen come looking for her, Nyssa flees the tavern with her uncle and sets out to find the meaning of her tattoo...and the source of her nightmares. This fast-paced and suspenseful story set in a medieval-inspired world should please fans of both fantasy and adventure.

On Thin Ice, by Jamie Bastedo (Red Deer Press) Fiction. Ashley has been having disturbing dreams of a frightening man/bear whom she believes is a shaman calling to her. When a classmate ofAshley's is found dead from what appears to have been a polar bear attack--even though no polar bears have been near their Arctic village for many years--Ashley begins drawing what she sees in her dreams and struggling to understand what she should do. This haunting, action-packed story paints a vivid picture of modern life in the far north and describes how global warming is changing the Arctic and its people.

Alphabet of Dreams, by Susan Fletcher (Atheneum Books) Fiction. Mitra and her little brother Babak are of royal lineage, but they've been living as beggars on the streets (with Mitra disguised as a boy) ever since their father's death. When Mitra discovers that Babak can dream other people's dreams--and predict the future from them--she
hopes to use his gift for profit. But instead, the two of them end up on the road with the magus Melchior, who has read portents in the stars about a new king and hopes that Babak's dreams can plot their way forward. With its richly described Persian setting and its focus on Mitra, this vividly imagined novel puts the journey of the Three Wise Men to Bethlehem (to see the baby Jesus) in a whole new light.

Dormia, by Jake Halpern and Peter Kujawinski (Houghton Mifflin) Fantasy. Lots of people imagine themselves doing incredible things in their dreams -- but Alfonso Perplexon really does accomplish amazing feats while he's fast asleep, including tending to a very strange, color-shifting plant. One day a man claiming to be Alfonso's long-lost Uncle Hill shows up and tells Alfonso that the plant, the Dormian bloom, is crucial to the survival of the kingdom of Dormia--and that the two of them must journey there to plant it in its native soil. This suspenseful, epic tale is a strong choice for readers looking for stories beyond the Harry Potter books. Dormia unfolds slowly but offers plenty of thrilling adventure and heated battles in a variety of exotically imaginative locales.

Seeing Red, by Anne Louise MacDonald (KCP Fiction) Fiction. Fourteen-year-old Frankie Uccello feels like he's utterly, boringly average, particularly in comparison to his multi-talented parents and sister. But when Frankie discovers that his vivid, strikingly colored dreams predict the future (and then he dreams that his friend Tim has a terrible riding accident) he almost longs to feel average again. This slightly supernatural companion to the novel The Ghost Horse of Meadow Green revisits that book's rural Canadian setting and includes plot lines and details that horse enthusiasts are sure to enjoy.

No comments:

Post a Comment