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The Dreamer - Audio Library Edition
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The Dreamer - Audio Library Edition

3.91  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,113 Ratings  ·  791 Reviews
A breathtaking novel from Pura Belpre Award winner, Pam Ryan, and MacArthur fellow and three-time Caldecott Honoree, Peter Sis!

Neftali finds beauty and wonder everywhere: in the oily colors of mud puddles; a lost glove, sailing on the wind; the music of birds and language. He loves to collect treasures, daydream, and write--pastimes his authoritarian father thinks are for
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published April 1st 2010 by Scholastic Audio Books (first published January 1st 2010)
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Müni (MuenisBookWorld)
OMG this book was everything.
I loved the whole story.

I read this out loud so my little sister could listen to me.
She lay next to me and listened to every word and every sentence I read.
She loved the illustrations in the book. They were epic!

She loved it and critized Neftalís father. "Why is he like that? Why doesn`t he support his son?" she asked.

She was inspired by the little boy Neftalí and his visions and his dreams.
Neftalí may have been a little boy, but he was indeed a big man in the insid
Lars Guthrie
Aug 07, 2010 Lars Guthrie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This precious jewel of a book is marred only by not ending where it should have. Ryan and Peter Sis, who get equal billing on the jacket, have created an exquisite piece of art. Prose, poetry and picture are skillfully interwoven and seamlessly merged in the story of a sickly, dreamy boy who lives in Temuco, Chile.

It's the perfect spot for a dreamer like Neftali, equidistant from the Pacific and the Andes, the roar of the sea and the rumbling of a volcano. It's the gateway to the Araucanian for
Oct 24, 2010 Rory rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids
I like reading poetry but I don't often care about poets. In fact, the less I know about them, the better. Nor do I like touchy-feely, dreamy-creamy, nothing's-real-OR-IS-IT stuff, either. And, come on--do kids? Nah.

Shelley's review had it right, that this was a mix of "magical realism, biography, poetry and literary fiction." She thought it was nicely done and maybe so do I but what's the point of a nicely done children's book that no child will want to read? I feel like Pam Muñoz Ryan just as
Casey Strauss
I absolutely loved reading this book, and ended up finishing it in one sitting. The Dreamer is the fictionalized telling of poet Pablo Neruda's childhood. Pam Munoz Ryan weaves in her own poetry within the pages of her book. This narrative details different challenges that Neruda faced as a young boy; a strict father who pushed his own dreams on his children, sickness, and his love a writing that was constantly looked down upon by his father.
Jan 07, 2011 Carol rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Neruda fans, poets, artists, anyone who appreciates a beautiful book
Author Pam Munoz Ryan, illustrator Peter Sis and their book designers have created a true work of art in the biographical novel The Dreamer. A fictionalized account of the childhood of Neftali Reyes (who later adopted the pen name Pablo Neruda), the book is both a physical and emotional jewel. Its iridescent blue/green/silver cover brings to mind the startling beetle that Neftali excitedly discovers on his first visit out into the jungle with his father, and the unusual text color echos the poe ...more
May 12, 2010 GraceAnne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful and moving and exquisitely written and illustrated, as if the writer and artist moved entirely within the voice of the poet.
Not all children will love this, but some will, and some few will find their own voices within it.
I will find a way to teach this in my children's and YA literature classes.
Rita Meade
Rita Meade rated it it was ok
Mar 04, 2014
Dec 12, 2010 Teresa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
I found this completely engrossing. I could not stop reading about Neftali and his controlling, dismissive father, his childhood in the mountains of Chile, and the rest of his family: brother Rodolfo, who gives up singing to please their father, his little sister Laurita, and his loving stepmother, who tries to help him, quietly. Ryan describes Neftali noticing the people and natural things around him, collecting treasures: pinecones, rocks, feathers and words, on slips of paper -- trying to ple ...more
Q-Laura Zarate
If I had met Pablo Neruda I'll have fallen in love with him. He had a sensibility to his world like no one else. He could see the difference of colors in the grass. I love the fact that he collects little souvenirs from nature.
The story is full of poetry, images and feelings. The illustrations are unique and dream like.
I read the book in Spanish.
I have seen a movie about Neruda's life. In the movie someone asks him to write a letter for his love just like the story in the book.
Growing up in Co
Jul 16, 2013 Alison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Audience: Intermediate

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Bloom's Taxonomy Questions:

Remembering - What did Neftali find in Mamadre's trunk?

Understanding - Neftali wonders how, "he could be absentminded when his head was so crowded with thoughts (Munoz Ryan, 2010, p. 73)." Explain what the author means by this.

Applying - What examples can you find in the text that describe Neftali's relationship with his father?

Analyzing - How would you compare the Chilean government, where Neftali lives, with the Amer
May 20, 2010 Kathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: j-fiction
A dreamy child of a hard man, Neftali grew up skinny and stuttering in a house of mysteries and fears, loved by a sympathetic stepmother, supported by an uncle whose newspaper promoted the rights of Native Chileans, and made determined by years of forced "swimming" among terrifying waves, he became the famous poet Pablo Neruda. This fiction crafted from episodes in Neruda's biography, incorporates some poetry and some Neruda-like questions, as well as some of his own works in an afterword. Peter ...more
Oct 09, 2010 Karen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Marvelous! The writing and the story are so beautiful that I was moved to tears more than once. Here is one page that describes the boy's feelings as his father burned his writing journals.
"Neighbors peered from the windows. Wagon drivers stopped, all watching Neftali's innermost feelings turn to yellow and orange and blue. His thoughts and cares and affections grew singed and curled. The remnants of his soul floated into the sky like gray snowflakes. His despair and fury about injustice flamed
Cindy Dobrez
Feb 15, 2010 Cindy Dobrez rated it really liked it
I just read the galley of this fictionalized biography of Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. I'm eager to see the finished book with the complete artwork of Peter Sis. Ryan brings the landscape to life as much as the characters and the close observations are perfectly suited to describing the story of a poet's life. I don't have much patience with overbearing hater-of-the-arts characters (in this case Neruda's father) but his negative influence most assuredly factors into Pablo's dual role as poet and r ...more
Cameron R
Apr 26, 2016 Cameron R rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Dreamer, by Pam Munoz Ryan and Peter Sis is a book about Neftali, a meek child who is weaker than the other children, which upsets his father. His father does not approve of his pastimes, which include daydreaming, collecting things, and the language arts. Later on, he becomes a brilliant poet that sees beauty in everything. I gave this book a 5/5 stars because of it's beautifully crafted words( like the poet the book is describing), the menacing climax, and some of the parts of the book tha ...more
Apr 30, 2016 Bernadette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mc-literature

Neftali, the central character in Pam Munoz Ryan’s novel, The Dreamer, is a sickly and sensitive child, full of wonder and awe. Through his eyes readers are privy to a world that is both harsh and unkind (a strict, authoritarian father) and beautiful and full of possibilities (“In the largest of worlds what adventures await the smallest ships.”). Ryan’s story is a fictional biography of Chilean poet and activist, Pablo Neruda. The Dreamer draws readers into the magical world of Neftali, as they
I read many books-- enjoying most of them-- but it is rare to encounter a book that takes my breath away. Reading The Dreamer, I knew I was witnessing genius on the page-- Munoz Ryan's achingly beautiful prose, Sis' fanciful illustrations, and most of all, Pablo Neruda's poetry.
2011 Belpré Author Award winner Fictionalized bio of Neruda's childhood. Beautiful writing combined with excerpts from his poems. Beautifully designed book too.
Liz Lambert
May 20, 2016 Liz Lambert rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
You know those quotes you hear in songs, and in poems and you have to stare off into the distance and think about the quote because it's so good and clever? This book is like those lyrics, except it's the whole book. This book really impacted me because it made me think of things I would not normally think about. I had to stop a few times to really focus and enjoy the quotes, and I love it when a book gives me that feeling. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys whole-hearted books, and that ...more
Linda Lipko
Neftali is a small, skinny boy. His Latin American father demands sons that are macho like him. The family consisting of his step mother, older brother and younger sister, are all afraid of the head of the family. Te least thing can set him off, flying into a fit of rage. When his father is not home, there is a relaxed feeling, and laughter which stops immediately upon hearing his approaching footsteps.

Neftali is a dreamer, a young boy with the soul of an artist. He sees imaginary images in the
Every time I hear about the poet Pablo Neruda, I am reminded of the Simpsons episode where Bart sells his soul to Milhouse:

Bart: I know that’s funny, but I’m just not laughing. [taps head]
Lisa: Hmm. Pablo Neruda said, “Laughter is the language of the soul.”
Bart: [in a snippy tone] I am familiar with the works of Pablo Neruda.

Anyway, back to the book...

The Dreamer is a gorgeous biographical novel about Pablo Neruda's childhood. While I do agree with some of the Goodreads griping that kids would n
Courtney Umlauf
With the beautiful cover art of this book, and the interesting premise that it tells the story of a young Pablo Neruda, I was really looking forward to this. I'm disappointed that I didn't enjoy it more than I did. It's very beautifully written, and I sympathized with the characters. However, I never felt that it was leading anywhere, never felt any tension. Even after finishing I don't have a good idea of what could be called the climax of the story, it just sort of meandered along. Not unpleas ...more
Nov 04, 2015 Alexis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jamie Short
Apr 25, 2014 Jamie Short rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: multi-cultural
Text to self: I love Pam Munoz Ryan and her writing. She creates vibrant characters and lives that are so authentic and real. I found this on the Pura Belpre award list, which is won in 2011. This book is no exception to reality of characters, especially since it is based on the life of poet Pablo Neruda. It is a gripping story of Neftali growing up with a father who wants his children to be educated instead of having to claw their way to a good life, but goes about it in an emotionally, verball ...more
Nicola Mansfield
Nov 22, 2010 Nicola Mansfield rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reason for Reading: I wouldn't have read this if I hadn't received a review copy but Ryan is the author of one of my son's favourite books that he has had read to him multiple times, Riding Freedom, and I love Peter Sis' artwork. Besides, I always enjoy a good biography, even children's fictional biographies. The poetry angle did worry me though as I am not a fan of poetry in general (except for the silly, rhyming kind ala Shel Silverstien and specific epic poems).

This tells the story of Neftali
Jessica Harrison
Review via the Deseret News
Neftali is a dreamer. He has been for as long as he can remember. Where some see an old boot or a pile of sticks, he sees a story and new places. His imagination is always working, and it drives his father nuts.

While Neftali finds beauty in the wonder of words and books, his father is looking for the practical. He wants Neftali to become a doctor. But to accomplish that, Neftalí must become robust — something he definitely is not.

Neftali is cripplingly shy and stutters
Sweet on Books
Jan 01, 2011 Sweet on Books rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reader-sr, melissa-g
Neftali is an eight year-old Chilean boy at the start of the book. He is a daydreamer, constantly distracted by the little things he sees around him. He loves to collect odds and ends. What is trash to others is a treasure to Neftali. He believes that he gains some knowledge or benefit from everything that he touches. He dreams of seeing the world and uses his incredible imagination to visit far off places in his mind. His imagination is a much happier place than his real life where he is weak f ...more
May 17, 2010 Jeannie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The message to follow your dreams is wonderful, making poets "cool", especially those from other countries is a great idea, and Pam Munoz Ryan's questions combined with Peter Sis' drawings are fantastic such as "Which is sharper? The hatchet that cuts down the dream? Or the scythe that clears a path for another?"

My lack of enthusiasm for the book is directly related to my having lived in Chile for six years and being married to a Chilean. Chile is an interesting land of contrasts. The literacy r
Oct 02, 2011 528_Kristin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1-latino
Opinion: This was book was just ok in my opinion. It was a bit hard to follow at times, and the time line goes to fast for me. It jumps so often, and I felt many story lines were left unanswered. You never learn if he finds friends, why he is sick, does he ever connect with his father, etc.? I felt for the characters, but I never felt like I connected with them.

Grades: 4+

Summary: The Dreamer is a fiction work based on the life of poet Pablo Neruda's. His story is told in verse, pictures, anecd
L13 Tracy Beling
Just finished this book and I absolutely loved it!! So beautiful! The imagery and figurative language are amazing. The words truly paint a picture. The illustrations are just as insightful. As an intermediate teacher, I tend to look at the content of a book and its lesson first. Here we have a child that is constantly aware of his father's expectations for him, but has no idea what to do with the fact that he has expectations for himself. Of course, he doesn't want to disappoint his father, but ...more
The Reading Countess
I found it difficult tagging this book to the appropriate bookshelves, thanks to Munoz Ryan's wonderful mixture of genres. MR's wide knowledge of the famed Pablo Neruda's life and works allows her to weave both truth and fiction into this whimsical and heartbreaking tale. The Dreamer, mentioned by Betsy Bird as a possible Newbery contender last month, reads like a love letter to the famous poet.

I see many possibilities in the classroom with this instant classic. Character's growth and change ov
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A former teacher, she lives in Leucadia, California with her family.
More about Pam Muñoz Ryan...

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“Which is sharper? The hatchet that cuts down dreams? Or the scythe that clears a path for another?” 9 likes
“Pablo Neruda's poems tramped through the mud [with the fieldworker]...knocked at the doors of mansions...sat at the table of the baker...The shopkeeper leaned over his counter and read them to his customers and said "Do you know him? He is my brother."

The poems became books that people passed from hand to hand. The books traveled over fences... and bridges... and across borders... soaring from continent to continent... until he had passed thousands of gifts through a hole in the fence to a multitude of people in every corner of the world.”
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