Saturday, April 13, 2013

Book Review: _Perchance To Dream_ edited by Denise Little

“To sleep perchance to dream,” wrote William Shakespeare. Dreams are a part of our world each night. They fascinate us and can be nonsensical, entertaining or profound. Perchance To Dream edited by Denise Little is a themed anthology with stories about dreams. They range from pleasant diversions to sad tales. There are many stories that readers will like.

The anthology opens with “1-900-NODREAM” by Diane Duane. Jim is haunted in his dreams by the ghosts of murder victims. He spends his time trying to help the ghosts but the dreams are destroying his mind with the constant reliving of the crimes. In desperation, he calls a phone number that claims they can help with dreams. A Ms. Cumaya helps him through the rest of the story. This story is very entertaining with likable characters. It has an interesting theme of how dreams can affect people’s lives.

Nina Kiriki Hoffman is a creative author of Contemporary Fantas   y. She writes stories that are memorable. “Night Stuff” is a strong ghost story about a mother and daughter that met a tragic end. They can only talk while inhabiting other people’s dreams. Through dreams can they find the doorway to redemption and freedom. Readers will enjoy this poignant tale.

“Needle and Dream” by classic Fantasy author Andre Norton takes place in one of her worlds. When people in the village dream, they must tell the Keeper who records it. Dreams are rare in this world and some prophetic. Krista wakes up from a dream about a threat to her village. The Keeper determines that she needs to finish her quilt. What follows is a wonderful story of courage and dreams fulfilled.

Historical Fantasy is represented by Nancy Springer’s clever story “Dreamfisher.” A young girl is driven from her people for naming things. She comes to a mountain lake where she meets Herodotus the a   ncient historian. He helps her to discover herself and the beauty of dreams. Ms. Springer gives readers a descriptive story of what life is like without dreams.

The theme of dreams takes a different turn in “A Butterfly Dreaming” by Susan Sizemore. Maggie is a surgeon from our world or dreaming trapped in the body of a woman in a Fantasy world by magic. She can’t go home and faces a perilous existence in the other world. The priests burn anyone they discover is from another dreaming. Ms. Sizemore weaves a clever plot with good characters that ends in a surprise.

Perchance to Dream is an entertaining anthology on the theme of dreams. Readers will find stories with interesting plots and likable characters. Dreams are an important part of our lives. We can’t live without them. Read some the the stories in this anthology, then go dream your own.

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