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Dreamquake: Library Edition

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Item description for Dreamquake: Library Edition by Edwina Wren Elizabeth Knox...

The dreamhunting began as a beautiful thing, when Tziga Hame discovered that he could enter the Place and share the dreams he found there with other people. But Tziga Hame has disappeared and Laura, his daughter, knows that the art of projecting dreams has turned sour. On St. Lazarus's Eve, when elite citizens gather at the Rainbow Opera to experience the sweet dream of Homecoming, Laura, determined to show them the truth, plunges them into the nightmare used to control the convict workers. The event marks the first blow in the battle for control of the Place, the source of dreams. Then, when Laura's cousin, Rose, uncovers evidence that the government has been building a secret rail line deep into the Place, Laura follows it to find out what lies at its end. As she struggles to counter the government's sinister plans, a deeper mystery surfaces, a puzzle only Laura can unravel, a puzzle having to do with the very nature of the Place. What is the Place, after all? And what does it want from her?

Inventive and richly imagined, Elizabeth Knox's dramatic conclusion will satisfy readers -- whether or not they've read Book One.

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Item Specifications...

Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.03" Width: 6.36" Height: 0.97"
Weight:   0.77 lbs.
Binding  CD
Release Date   Jan 30, 2008
Publisher   Bolinda Publishing
ISBN  1921334207  
ISBN13  9781921334207  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Audio CDs
2Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Science Fiction, Fantasy, Mystery & Horror > Mysteries, Espionage, & Detectives
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary

Reviews - What do customers think about Dreamquake: Library Edition?

one of the best fantasies I've ever read  Jun 4, 2008
I don't make a habit of rereading because there are enough books that I feel I should spend my time on new material instead of rehashing something I've read before. (Usually I also remember enough details to make a second reading boring.) Even rarer, for me, is wanting to reread a book almost immediately after finishing it. And yet I have wanted to reread not one, but two books in the past month almost as soon as I completed my first reading. The books were that good.

The first of these two extraordinary books was "Dreamhunter" by New Zealand author Elizabeth Knox (alternately known as "The Rainbow Opera" in the UK). The second, and perhaps this isn't a great surprise, was "Dreamquake" also by Elizabeth Knox.

"Dreamquake" (which I believe is more appropriately called "The Dream Quake" in England) is the second book of Knox's Dreamhunter Duet and was chosen as an ALA Best Book for Young Adults in 2008.

There is a lot I want to say about this book, but first I think I first have to say a bit about how the duet actually works. Some readers feel rather strongly, and fairly, that the Duet cannot be read in isolation (that is the two books cannot stand alone). Other readers, also fairly, feel that the books can and do work well as individual pieces of prose. I actually agree with both viewpoints.

At first I thought that "Dreamhunter" worked really well on its own. The characters and plot developed well, everything sort of tied up at the end. Then I read a review saying that the first book ended on a cliffhanger with no kind of resolution and, after thinking about it for a bit I realized she was kind of right.

Personally, I think both books stand alone. Knox is a good enough writer that either book feels like a complete read. The opening of "Dreamquake" adequately explains the events of the first book so that readers won't be lost while doing so from new viewpoints so that readers also will not be bored. At the same time, having seen both parts of the Duet in person, I have to say they really are one book. Just looking at the book design-the first book has a prologue while the second includes the epilogue and a glossary-I realized that "Dreamhunter" and "Dreamquake" are more like two parts of one story (what I often call companion books in this blog) than two stories directly following each other (what I would call sequel books). Much in the way that Tolkien initially wanted the Lord of the Rings to be one book, Knox's Dreamhunter duet also works as one book (though not with a cliffhanger ending anywhere near as painful as "The Fellowship of the Ring".) But I also feel obligated to say that, even if it's out of order and not close together, BOTH books must be read to get the full impact and beauty of either book.

Just a bit about the basic plot of "Dreamhunter": I'm not all that familiar with New Zealand but a review from the New Zealand Listener tells me that Knox's novels are set in "something like the New Zealand of a century ago, but with a twist, in that social life revolves around a traffic in dreams." The rare people who can catch dreams, dreamhunters, perform them for the social elite at dream palaces like the Rainbow Opera. Dreams are also often used for the public good in hospitals around Southland. Some dreamhunters also capture nightmares which readers learn in "Dreamhunter" are used for the public good, but in a much more sinister way. Laura discovers this fact when she begins investigating the disappearance of her father, one of the greatest dreamhunters Southland has ever seen. Outraged by what she has seen, Laura sets out to inform the public of the governments use of nightmares. "Dreamhunter" ends with the disastrous results of this attempt.

It is therefore no surprise that "Dreamquake" opens with the chaos following the execution of Laura's plan as Southland and Laura's family are thrown into a state of disarray. Adrift with only her creation, Nown, and a nightmare Laura has to find a way to earn back her family's trust while negotiating an entanglement with a fellow young dreamhunter. All this while continuing to investigate the corruption of the sinister Dream Regulatory Body created to control the Place and its invaluable resources.

I could actually talk for hours about the nuances of this novel's plot and how Knox ties everything together at the end, but if you read the book you'll probably see what I mean for yourself.

"Dreamquake" is every bit as good as "Dreamhunter" while also being even better because it expands on characters who don't get as much chance to shine in the first novel. Sandy and Rose (and to some extent Nown) are back and much more engaged in the central plot than they were in "Dreamhunter" to great effect.

Knox's prose is unique in that it is well-paced while also being high action. Knox takes her time to explain terms like "Soporif" and "Novelists" but never to the detriment of the story. The action here is so intense and gripping that, at several points in the novel, I found myself skimming ahead just to make sure that everything would turn out all right in the end.

The Dreamhunter Duet is a rare thing in contemporary literature. Both books are rich enough that, were the main characters not teenagers, no one would question its place as an adult book-but I've made that argument about other books on this site. More to the point, Knox is an amazing righter. "Dreamhunter" and "Dreamquake" are populated by a wide variety of characters, each unique and fully realized on the page. Instead of creating a world and characters and even this story, it feels instead like Knox is introducing readers to old friends, reciting a familiar story-everything within these novels seems so real, the details are so concrete, that it feels like folly to consider it fantastic or even fiction. And that is why "Dreamquake" (and "Dreamhunter") will surely take their rightful places among the canon of great fantasy novels.

The conclusion gives a feeling of mystification  Jun 1, 2007
On St. Lazarus's Eve, numerous people attend the Rainbow Palace where they look forward to experiencing Homecoming, a favorite dream caught by renowned dreamhunter Grace Tiebold. However, Grace has been feeling anxious due to the recent disappearance of her brother-in-law, Tizga Hame, and how it has affected the Hame-Tiebold family. She arranges to have George Mason, Southland's best Soporif, join her in the presentation and help her fall asleep.

What is supposed to be a refreshing, peaceful dream quickly becomes a terrifying nightmare. The Rainbow Palace and nearby residences of Founderston experience Buried Alive, which conveys the terror convicts face. Amidst the terrible chaos, a mysterious figure flees the dream palace carrying a girl --- Laura Hame.

The Dream Regulatory Body and the Body of Commission begin an intense investigation in which the dreamhunters are questioned and then allowed to go back in the Place to overwrite the terrible master dream. Laura is sequestered in the Temple until it's safe for her once again, while the rest of the family uncover secrets of their own. Rose finds plans for a railway being built into the Place, its purpose unknown. Chorley discovers some startling messages, while Grace tries to understand her family and the society she thought she knew.

There are many great changes to come for the Hame-Tiebold family. Rose and Laura are growing up but taking very different paths in life. Rose is at school and is a debutante, a role that she both relishes and despises. There is also her friendship with Mamie Doran, who, despite her wealthy lifestyle, is lost and unhappy --- partly resulting from her father's growing need to maintain his public image no matter what the cost. Meanwhile, Laura is now a full-time dreamhunter and spends time with her secret companion Nown as she develops feelings for Sandy Mason. Most of all, Laura wants to expose the corrupt politicians responsible for her father's disappearance and possible demise. But at what price?

DREAMQUAKE, the much-anticipated sequel to DREAMHUNTER, follows the two cousins on a path of discovery, and shows how the Place affects the lives of the people who regard it with wonder and suspicion. There are many complex ideas that are revealed and answered throughout the book. Its captivating storylines, along with the descriptive scenery of the Place, satisfy, while the conclusion gives a feeling of mystification long after the final page has been read.

--- Reviewed by Sarah Sawtelle
A Fitting End  Mar 13, 2007
I devoured the first installment of this story, Dreamhunter, and was excited to have discovered a new voice in Elizabeth Knox. Her dialogue is realistic, yet exciting. Her characters are utterly believable even in the most fantastic situations. Dreamquake fulfills the expectations raised by Dreamhunter in an exciting, thought-provoking adventure.
I disagree with the earlier review, in that I liked Nown's fate, and I see the possibility for another story including his character because of how he winds up.
5 stars!!!
Magical  Feb 22, 2007
The finale to Dreamhunter was well worth the wait, easily fulfilling the promise of the first half.
The book starts with a recap of the events at the end of Dreamhunter, but told from different points of view - a quick and effective way to get readers back into the story (Not that I needed it - this story is unforgettable).

Laura's scheme, based on her father's cryptic letter, is a complete failure, and causes more trouble, alerting the conspirators that they have opposition to deal with.

However, the assistance of older and supposedly wiser heads doesn't seem to help much either, and Laura's family do little more than hinder her.
But her cousin Rose finds some interesting clues, and Laura and her loyal golem Nown head off to investigate - straight into lethal danger.

In the end, everything hangs on the true nature of the Place - what is it for, where do the dreams come from, what brought it into being?

This book has everything - from adolescent angst, magic, romance, fate vs free will, evil politicians, scheming priests and much, much more. The ending isn't quite as good as it could be (the fate of Nown makes no sense at all) but it comes together to a satisfying conclusion.

I thoroughly recommend this book to everyone.

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