Friday, February 20, 2015

Book Review: The Dreamer

My Review (1 star):
     The Dreamer was a strange story. I hardly know what to make of it. My one star doesn't mean that I hated it, but I've come to the conclusion that I didn't really like it at all either.

      I didn't realize it was a time-travel adventure, but nonetheless, I plunged ahead, despite the slightly different beginning. It told about a scholarly, ambitious young woman who was trying to figure out the mysteries of life and change the world. She was convinced it was possible to travel through time. So she jumped off a cliff. Yeah... By and by, we meet some pirates and hear of massive treasures hidden away, and follow Rachel as she comes to conclusions she never imagined.

      My first problem, was the talk of "Mother Earth" and Rachel's rather obsession with "time", traveling through time, and "fate". Then there was the bits of violence that I found rather unneeded. A little over half-ways through the book, I almost stopped reading. I think the most abhorrent thing about The Dreamer was at that point, where the hero of the story recounts the story of how his "noble" father effectively "saved" his mother from ruthless pirates by putting an end to her life. I could hardly stomach it. A slightly similar situation follows shortly after. I'm sorry, but I am not okay with that being in the books I read. Our lives are in God's hands, period. I don't believe in the right to end your own life or someone else's in the guise of "saving" one. It's a nasty business all in all, and that definitely was mostly the reason for my one star.

      My next biggest complaint, would be the whole "faith/religion" bits in the story. One, we have this seemingly good-hearted old man who wears a cross necklace. Fairly quickly, he is made out to be a sniveling coward who puts many a life in danger because of his lack of selflessness and courage. Then we have some moral-less pirates, who befriend Rachel and are made out to be quite jolly and kind. Rachel puts down the necklace-wearing old man time and again, ranting at his religion. It seemed a subtle sneering at Christianity almost. Though, afterwards, the old man does end up doing something that seems to rectify it all and set things to right in Rachel's mind. She shortly after starts wearing a cross necklace. God is mentioned a few times, like "I knew that I time-traveled. And God knew." But after putting away the "religion is a crutch", Rachel seemed to have a misguided faith in the cross or something to do with it. In the cross necklace, and her own self. Simply put, this book had no faith elements to speak of. Just a few confusing things here and there that left you wondering what the author was trying to say. It was like they were trying to roll bits of Christianity into their own comfortable ideas, where God isn't really involved and such, or something of that sort.

      One somewhat redeeming theme I found in The Dreamer is Rachel's finding herself loving being a woman, and realizing how esteemed the job of being a wife and mother is. I thought that was especially neat and poignant... but the realization then went a bit far and Rachel seemed to be thinking pretty highly of herself. *Sigh* Not sure if that's what the author intended... but seriously, just explain the solid merits of a woman at home, "The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world" would suffice. Not all this "I made them do..." "Because of me, they..." "If not for myself..."

      The story, considering, was interesting enough. I generally enjoy time-travel, and found this to be an interesting take. 1714, pirates, lovely dresses... it was fun. The treasure bits were fascinating at some points, then rather bored me at others. It might be someone else's taste more than mine.

      Rachel was... very hard for me to connect with. She seemed a bit... "blonde" at times. Or something like that. She talked so much, using huge words and complicated phrases, and hardly ever listened to what anyone else was saying. Then she seemed to easily forget how evil this one guy was, forever replying "happily" and smiling and all that. Supposedly it was just a ruse, but I didn't feel it at the point. Gradually, I saw her change and become more gentle and thoughtful. But all in all, I couldn't really relate to her.

      The romance got a bit heated in a scene or two. But in the end, it turned out to be a sweet love story for the most part.

      All in all, The Dreamer ended quite nicely and sigh-worthy. But I just can't rate it anything good. It had too many confusing things in my opinion. The parts of supposedly "saving violence" were unpardonable. And I hate reading a book where I can't discern if the author is bashing my God or not. He is everything to me! I don't want to read a book that dishonors Him in any way, :/. And just general obscured, uncertain faith elements in books bother me. I like faith to be the center of my books, firm and deep, thank you! It's all about relationship, not religion anyway.

      So I can't say I'll be reading anymore by this author. Not a badly-done book by any means. Just had some things that I personally don't want to read.

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