Menu | Rating System




Brent Hartinger


Starscape (Tor)

Cover Designer:
  August Hall  
Release Date:


  Teen Psychological Fantasy  
Reviewed by:

This was a great "coming of age/finding yourself" teen book. Julie is having trouble dealing with her parents, who continually fight. Every night her fears from her family life invade her dreams, causing her horrendous nightmares.

One night, she falls asleep, starts dreaming, and falls through a rip in her consciousness. When she wakes up, she's inside her own dream, and has to find her way out before the rip closes and traps her in her own head for the rest of her life.

She's landed in the studio that produces her dreams. That's right a studio, complete with actors, actresses, props, wardrobe, and gophers to run errands. Roman is one of these errand boys, and befriends Julie on her adventure through her own subconscious. In scenes reminiscent of Pilgrim's Progress, they travel desert & sea, find towns, writers, producers, good guys and bad.

Solving internal problems as they go, they discover an external problem as well. Vivian, the actress who plays Julie in her dreams, has found the rift to the real world and passed through. She's taking the real world, Julie's parents, friends and school by storm.

Acting nothing like the real Julie, Vivian is everything Julie's parents have wanted her to be. Now Julie not only has to solve the interior maze of her mind before the rift closes, she has to somehow bring Vivian back, and figure out how to live with the new decisions Vivian has made in the real world.

This was an imaginative and thought provoking take on the inner journey we all take in making peace between childhood and adulthood. Finding the keys to understanding ourselves, and learning to open up and understand the perspectives of others always makes for interesting reading to me. Additionally, the story emphasizes being an individual and standing up for what you believe is right, while still making friends and being empathetic to the views and feelings of others.

All in all, I really enjoyed this quick and easy read. I'd recommend it for anyone, including young readers who are beginning to ask these questions for themselves.

Related Links:



Return to the top of this page. | Return to the Book Review menu.