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Point of Dreams (Astreiant #2)

4.11  ·  Rating Details  ·  325 Ratings  ·  38 Reviews
The city of Astreiant has gone crazy with enthusiasm for a new play, The Drowned Island, a lurid farrago of melodrama and innuendo. Pointsman Nicolas Rathe is not amused, however, at a real dead body on stage and must investigate. A string of murders follow, perhaps related to the politically important masque that is to play on that same stage. Rathe must once again recrui ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published December 11th 2001 by Tor Books (first published February 10th 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 651)
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K.J. Charles
Loved this. Love the whole series. The writing is so smooth and assured, with so much left between the lines. The world is intricately constructed, the mystery elegantly developed, the romance beautifully understated. This is the kind of writing that feels effortless, which of course means it was anything but.

This reminds me of how fantasy used to make me feel, which is to say, why I spent years reading very little else. I would rather be in these books than not, that's all.
Apr 03, 2016 Laura rated it it was amazing
De momento mi favorito de esta serie.

Volvemos al mundo de Astreiant, un mundo que envuelve completamente, y nos encontramos con un misterio que nos atrapa desde la primera muerte en el teatro.

Me encanta el proceso de la investigación y cómo los hechos se entrecruzan y entrelazan unos con otros. Me gusta mucho el honesto Rathe y cómo Eslingen se ha integrado con los Maestros de Defensa, una posición que vuelve a cruzarse en el camino de la investigación, de modo que volverá a terminar ayudando
When I finished this book, I set it aside with a feeling of satisfaction, as if I'd had a good meal. The mystery was well-done, the fantastic elements of the story and the world well-conceived, the backstory well-integrated and relatively easy to pick up once I got into the rhythm of the plot.

Scott and Barnett write with an attention to detail and a richness of atmosphere not often found in fantasy. The story moves along leisurely, over the course of a few days, and (forgive the clumsy metaphor)
This second book in the late-Renaissance series centred on pointsman Rathe is similar at first sight to the first but subtly different nonetheless, as if the two plots belonged each to one of the two authors.

The first was more focused on the mistery, on the action that brings to its solving and it was fleshed out with countless details about the lower-class characters' way of life.
In this second one the mistery seems not to be the focus of the narrative: it rather seems an excuse to examine char
Nov 26, 2012 heidi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Chronologically, this is the third book in the series I think of as "CSI: Big Gay Fantasy". The mental name is probably an unfair depiction, since the book is much more about the teamwork between Rathe and Eslingen than about their growing intimacy.

This mystery is set against the upcoming power changeover, a situation much like the tulip craze of Holland, and a magically important play. There is also a confluence of the stars that is causing everyone to see ghosts of their past, quite literally.
4.5 stars. So well done. This is a marvellous book in a marvellous fantasy mystery series and this is my favourite so far. The city of Astreiant and its residents continue to capture all my attention. There's so much depth and subtlety and complexity in this story and the characters continue to be totally compelling. The mystery is absolutely fascinating, as is the theatrical setting. It's a murder mystery story based around a big theatrical production. Also going on is a mad flower craze like t ...more
Abi Walton
I think I preferred this book to the first one, which was brilliant don't get me wrong. I just love Nico and Philp being lemen together it makes me so happy. And I adore how Scott and Barnett write their relationship, it is there, but also so subtle making the moments of tenderness more heart moving and wonderful.
I really want all my books to be set in this world, where everyone is bisexual and it doesn't matter. Nico and Philip are lemen and its just the perfect setting for a story that is dri
Jul 20, 2015 Kate rated it it was amazing
Still hitting EVERYTHING I LOVE. Some of the theatre stuff got a bit impenetrable at times, but it didn't take away from the book.
Dec 01, 2015 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Point of Dreams continues where Scott and Barnett left off, bringing us back to Astreiant and the world that they have built. While it was nice to see another aspect of the city-state (the theater and lives of the nobility), I admit it took a second to get back into swing with the vocabulary and some finer details of the setting. (It wouldn't be as big of a deal if I read them closer together, but it still made me pause and try to remember what I knew from Point of Hope.)

Again, the characters al
Jan 10, 2016 Alarra rated it it was ok
Shelves: gblt, fantasy, mystery
it was diminishing returns with the second book, Point of Dreams, as Nico and Philip investigate strange murders at the playhouse. I felt there was too little time exploring how they felt about each other - even as past loves were thrown in to the mix, it felt like all the relationship stuff happened offstage (lol pun unintended), only so they could bring it to the fore to hammer home a pertinent point to the mystery.

I also felt the crime was ridiculously easy to solve, and was really annoyed t
Angel Pedroza
Dec 14, 2014 Angel Pedroza rated it it was amazing
I came at this series backwards because I listened to this book in the audio version. The story was exciting and suspenseful. The two main characters were fully developed and loved each other. The author built a fully described alternate universe. With each of these points becoming more and more obvious as I progressed through the story my delight grew. I was sorry the story ended but I consoled myself with the fact that I could backtrack through the series and start from the beginning, which I ...more
Stephen Poltz
Apr 12, 2016 Stephen Poltz rated it liked it
“Point of Dreams” is the second in the Astreiant series. In this installment, there are a series of murders associated with a play to be staged at a great masque for the queen. Nicolas Rathe is once again called on to get to the bottom of this mystery. His leman, or lover, Philip Eslingen, is involved with the play and helps Rathe investigate the murders. This book won the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Science Ficton/Fantasy/Horror novel. I found it to be a fairly good book, with some interesti ...more
Mar 07, 2016 Tenny rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, mystery, gay
The second book of this series is better than the first one. First reason, of course, is that our main heroes are together and dating (much to my dismay, how they actually got together wasn't shown, we were just told). But even the plot is better, murders very mysterious and setting more familiar.
Thankfully, there is less emphasis on the star things and more on how the characters themselves, their history and the world itself.
And while this book isn't romance, some moments still made my heart fl
Feb 27, 2014 D rated it it was amazing
I gave this three stars the first time around, I don't know what's wrong with me tbh.

I guess it has to do with not having read the first book before this one, and had a hard time understanding the world-building. You don't need to have read Point of Hopes before reading Point of Dreams, but it would certainly help in better appreciating Astreiant.

I'm really in love with this series, you have no idea.

Dreams start with Rathe as the Senior Adjunct Point for Point of Dreams, the part of Astreiant wh
Lis Carey
Jan 12, 2011 Lis Carey rated it really liked it
Shelves: f-sf, mystery, fiction
This is a sequel to Point of Hopes. Basically, this is a mystery series; it just happens to be set in a fantasy world with an interesting cosmology and magic system. Just as the real test of whether you're likely to enjoy Hammerfall is whether you enjoy Cherryh's fantasy, not her sf, I think the real test of whether you're likely to enjoy this book is whether you enjoy mystery series, not whether you enjoy fantasy series.

Astreiant is the capital city of a land with a roughly 17th century level o
One of my favorites, and just as good if not better than the first book in the series. Yep, it's more queer fantasy mystery. It's winter in Astreiant and the royal masque is coming up. Eslingen is hired by the theater to teach swordplay to the nobles who are involved, and, well, then people involved with the production start dying, and Rathe has to investigate. Also ghosts are in town, and there's some magic involving flower arrangement -- or is that only a rumor?

I love this series so very much.
Feb 09, 2009 Jane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jane by: acchikocchi
I didn't comment on this in my review of Point of Hopes, the prequel to Point of Dreams, but I like how subtle and understated the authors are about the details and structures of their world, like they are taken for granted being so much a part of Chnedolle's society that one doesn't notice them. Details like Chnedolle is a mostly matriarchy society or as I mentioned, Boston marriages, for females as well as males, are legal and common or Gargoyles are living creatures, guarding houses as well a ...more
Jul 21, 2007 Michalyn rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: mystery, historical, fantasy and yaoi lovers
If I had to compare the Point of Hopes and Point of Dreams I'd say that though both are excellent, Point of Dreams is better than Point of Hopes. While in the first book there were a few places were the plot slowed down as a result of the authors' world-building, Point of Dreams is much more fast-paced.

The relationship between Philip and Rathe really makes it an enjoyable read because we get to see so many glimpses of the way they care about each other.Philip especially is quite protective. Rat
Oct 24, 2015 Dianne rated it really liked it
4.5 Stars Wonderful fantasy world with a compelling, unique plot. Equally wonderful and unique are the characters of Nico and Philip. I felt this one had a much tighter plot than the first novel in the series, making it consistently enjoyable throughout. Note: I listened to the Audible version without having read the book first: highly recommended - the narrator is excellent. Bring on Fairs' Point, I need to know even more about this world as well as the past and future of the two men. :-)
Indigo Erin
May 28, 2014 Indigo Erin rated it it was amazing
I love these books. I think this one is my favorite so far though. I love the world and the mystery and the characters. My only point of discontent is the handling of the relationship. These characters are in love, they should be more affectionate in private at least. This seems to be a pretty common thread in gay fantasy, i wonder if it was just too shocking for two men to be lovers when these were published.
Lisa Foulke
Point of Dreams (Astreiant, #3) continues a great series. We see more of necromancer b’Estorr, who has grown into a favorite of mine. And the way that flowers are worked into the plot ... wow.

I love a world where magic is casually accepted.
Aug 22, 2012 Isis rated it really liked it
Shelves: glbt, fantasy
More cohesive and better-paced than the first book, and of course the whole thing, from the mystery to the light touch of magic to the clever worldbuilding to the m/m relationship is totally right up my alley. I wish there was just a little more of the relationship - but I guess that's what fanfic is for.

The book itself does read a bit like fanfiction, not in the amazing worldbuilding or plot so much as in the writing. I counted THREE times Eslingen let out a breath he didn't know he'd been hold
Jillian MacLeod
I don't really have a lot to say about this that I haven't already said about the other books in the series: I love the characters, the worldbuilding, etc.
And another update! Now available an an audiobook, I've always got to listen to the sample - as much as I might love a book or series (I'm looking at you, Fitz and the Fool series) if I don't like the narrator's voice, I won't invest in the time and money an audioread requires. This narrator is excellent: very smooth and pleasant, with an interesting variety of character voices.

Update! Available now as an e-book! I'm eager to re-read now that I've fallen in love with the world on second reading
Another fantastic mystery in Astreiant. It really had a Lynn Flewellingly feeling about it.

What I really liked about the story, was again its fascinating city with its fascinating and peculiar customs. Scott and Barnett really invented a wonderful world with Astreiant.

Additional I really liked how they wrote about the relationship of our two main characters. I like that its not the main thing of the story, its just nice window dressing.

So, on to Fairs' Point.
Aug 24, 2015 Joseph rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely loved this book, and have dived eagerly into the following books in the series.
Victoria Gaile
Nov 22, 2012 Victoria Gaile rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Didn't like it as much as Point of Hopes, partly because I particularly liked the apprentices in that book. But the overall story was interesting enough; it was nice to visit that world again; it's nice to read stories in which samesex relationships are just taken for granted; and (view spoiler)
Nov 25, 2008 Sharakael rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: People who don't mind GLBT.
While the setting, the world itself and the magic system is unique, somehow I can't really empathise with the characters... while reading, I kept on getting the feeling that I would probably like the characters more if I had read the book's prequel.

Also, while the main characters (2 guys) were a couple, their interaction didn't look like one...
The book is worth reading, if only because of the unique setting.
Meredith Armstrong
Aug 28, 2013 Meredith Armstrong rated it it was amazing
I loved this book - even though I hadn't read the first one first so I found the world a bit confusing to start. I definitely recommend reading these in order! Hopefully Melissa Scott will eventually be able to finish the other two books about Nico and Philip that she and her partner, Lisa A. Barnett, had planned.

Loved it even more the second time around. This is a wonderful universe full of fantastic characters!
Walter Underwood
Oct 07, 2011 Walter Underwood rated it it was amazing
More assured than Point of Hopes and a marvelously inventive scheme. I won't even tell you about it, because it is too much fun.

Sadly, Lisa Barnett died around the time this was published, but I'm delighted that Melissa Scott is writing another book set in Astreiant, "Point of Knives".
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Scott studied history at Harvard College and Brandeis University, and earned her PhD. in comparative history. She published her first novel in 1984, and has since written some two dozen science fiction and fantasy works, including three co-authored with her partner, Lisa A. Barnett.

Scott's work is known for the elaborate and well-constructed settings. While many of her protagonists are gay, lesbia
More about Melissa Scott...

Other Books in the Series

Astreiant (3 books)
  • Point of Hopes (Astreiant, #1)
  • Fairs' Point (Astreiant, #3)

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