Laurel's Reviews > Perchance to Dream

Perchance to Dream by Lisa Mantchev
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's review
Sep 28, 11

bookshelves: how-to-make-memorable-characters, how-to-make-a-good-series, ya, that-cover-unf, you-have-my-respect, look-something-original, damn-love-traingles
Recommended to Laurel by: My goddamn self
Recommended for: Fans of the Theater, Shakespeare-a-holics
Read from August 27 to September 27, 2011

I'm gonna be one of those people and start off with a story that somewhat relates to this review.

I got back from my poetry class and wandered to the front door of my apartment. There was a goldenrod flyer chilling next to my door for a restaurant called Wings Over. I had gotten wings from this place whenever I visited Penn State, and I was in love with them. If you ever get the chance to order wings from Wings Over...DO IT. Anywho, they had opened up a place in Rochester (where I go to le college), and I was freaking out all by myself in my apartment. It was glorious.

That's kind of how I wanted the ending to be for this installment of Théâtre Illuminata, but I did not receive as nice of a surprise. However, I feel that that's okay because it's probably just mulled over to get to the final book, So Silver Bright. I will let it slide, even though I still have this groggy feeling about it.

And so we get the entrance of Bertie and Company. Sedna's got Nate. Bertie wants to free Nate. Sedna says, "Fuck you, I'm the Sea Goddess." Then Bertie fixes her dress, slips on her bamf booties, gets some advice from Finn and Jake, and says, "Looks like it's up to ME!"

Let us begin the breakdown:

The plot was not as jumbled, thank goodness. Nothing seem misplaced. However, it was still pretty hard to follow. I had to make sure I didn't miss anything, but at the same time, there were a number of things that were unnecessary and could have been cut out. That's just me. The writing was as poetic as it could be without turning purple and overdone, and I enjoyed it a lot for the brilliant imagery. I can imagine things so well with Mantchev's writing, hence why I say (and I will keep saying) that Hayao Miyazaki would have a FIELD DAY with these books.

I was not as drawn in as I thought I would be, but anything Shakespeare-related kind of does that for me, which leaves me baffled as to how I can love this series so goddamn much. The writing power of Mantchev couldn't match Brewer's or Roth's for Eighth Grade Bites and Divergent, respectively. I think the problem was that the pacing was a little jarring. Some scenes dragged on where some of the more tense scenes held the proper snap. I'd probably be wanting a hell of a lot more if the pacing was up to par.

Moving onto the characters, Bertie has more oomph behind her in this installment, and I love it. She's not taking any excuses, and no matter how much she tries to use her words to support the Company, there are times where they fuck up and prove themselves to not be a deus ex machina AND GOOD GOD AM I GRATEFUL FOR THAT.

This explains my thanks rather nicely:
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Bertie, as determined and sarcastic as she can be, slips up around her two dudes. This is why I can't stand fucking love triangles. They make unnecessary moments that drag people like Bertie out of character. At least I think so... She doesn't go far enough to go ga-ga over Ariel and Nate, but it's on that thin line where I'm saying, "Stoooooop it and get back to hunting the sea bitch." I will say that she does have a few great moments where she's like, "Fuck y'all I'm better all by myself," and she ignores Ariel/Nate.

The newer characters like the Scrimshander and Waschbär were nicely developed throughout Perchance, more so that the band of show people that Waschbär came from, who seemed unnecessary enough that I forget even now what their troupe name was. I only remember Valentijn.

However, lemme shed some happy light here. I am ALL about the magic portion of this book. There is so much brilliance in the magic that is dove into in this book. Mantchev's got a lot of gears going in this book and I loved seeing her originality fly free. Beautiful!

I will also give my opinion, as a fan, on my personal choice for Bertie (as much as I hate love triangles and teams and deciding):

Nate, in this book and the previous, acts way too much like a big brother. To the point where I find it awkward that he stands like a bodyguard between Ariel and Bertie. That is just my honest opinion. I still kinda like him, but not as a love interest. There hasn't been any scenes that stand out as good material for a romance to build between him and Bertie. He's just a fun-talking pirate who acts like Bertie's best friend, and not someone she could stay with forever. I think Bertie loves him, but she isn't IN love with him.

Ariel, has stuck around Bertie this whole book, right there for her. Though he acts a little possessive at times, he is not trying to get into Bertie's pants. He's not trying to kill Nate to get Bertie (like Nate is like a snarling pet dog to him), and it shows that Ariel legit cares about her. There were also scenes that really drove their characters together, more in this book than the first. Also, Ariel on the cover hooked me in and made me love him even more than I did in the first book.
Ariel, my good sir...
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

This bring me to that ending again. Bittersweet and poopy. When the climax came to approach Sedna, it fell upon the love triangle for WHATEVER reason, and I was just awe-struck at how stupid it was. Sedna wanted to kill all of them, then she didn't, then she wanted to kill Bertie, but then she let the men fight each other to take Bertie back with them, but then she wanted to kill all of them again.......get what I mean about this plot thing and how love triangles make it go a little crazy?


Anywho, as much as that ending really irked me, there were still many things that keep this story at a solid 4 stars. I still recommend this book because of its original, clever, and magical tendencies, but it's still not quite there yet as a simply AMAZING piece of literature. Still love it nonetheless.
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Quotes Laurel Liked

Lisa Mantchev
“And you can call me Bertie. Unexpected use of Beatrice makes me think I'm in trouble.”
Lisa Mantchev, Perchance to Dream

Reading Progress

08/27/2011 page 7
2.0% "Bertie, I hope you choose Nate. That way, I can have Ariel all to myself."
09/22/2011 page 24
7.0% "Well I was definitely pulled into faster than the first book at this point. I'm smelling a new favorite series possibly."
09/22/2011 page 36
11.0% ""Unexpectedly being called Beatrice makes me think I'm in trouble." I hear ya, Bertie!"
09/22/2011 page 46
14.0% "Ghost!Nate seems more like a brother than a love interest at the moment."
09/22/2011 page 64
19.0% "Image and video hosting by TinyPic Had the urge to draw the Scrimshander, so here is my interpretation."
09/22/2011 page 123
37.0% "Oh my god, Ariel. <3"
09/22/2011 page 123
37.0% ""Ariel looked as though he could murder someone midair." Image and video hosting by TinyPic Um...another urge..." 4 comments
09/22/2011 page 141
42.0% "AWKWARD! I usually can't stand love triangles, but this...I just find this too funny to hate."
09/23/2011 page 179
54.0% "I really hope Mr. Miyazaki finds this series. It's so magical. It's screaming his name."
09/27/2011 page 190
57.0% "Image and video hosting by TinyPic Ariel....Ariel. ARIEL!! No no no no no no NO NO NO NO NO. ULTIMATE SADFACE."
09/27/2011 page 208
62.0% "CRYING IN A CORNER OVER HERE." 3 comments
09/27/2011 page 215
65.0% "DON'T YOU CURSE OFF ARIEL. You're the one who said shit in your sleep! >:["
09/27/2011 page 220
66.0% "I can't stay mad at you, Bertie. You're so determined."
09/27/2011 page 227
68.0% "I am loving the fact that throughout the series, Bertie's skills as the Mistress of Revels haven't acted as a deus ex machina. The magic words fuck up on more than one occasion rather than just SWOOP IN AND SAVE THE DAY! I'd like to thank Mantchev for being smart about that."
09/27/2011 page 229
69.0% "No Ariel, NO! Don't you FUCKING GO TWILIGHT OR DIVERGENT ON ME BERTIE. I WILL NOT HAVE IT. I haaaate that sort of subplot."
09/27/2011 page 240
72.0% "I give you credit, Scrimshander for being fatherly towards your daughter for the first time in this book."
09/27/2011 page 247
74.0% "ARIEL!!!!!!! <3"
09/27/2011 page 247
74.0% "I'm fangirling way too much. I need to be more critical."
09/27/2011 page 249
75.0% "AHAHAHAHA WHAT a WAY to get at Bertie, Ariel. BOOM."
09/27/2011 page 262
79.0% " this a giant test to get to Sedna? I'm feeling like my mind is getting fucked with."
09/27/2011 page 273
82.0% "This is counting as Scene of Excellence #2 for Bertie/Ariel. #1 being that LOVELY tango from Book the First."
09/27/2011 page 288
86.0% "Emeralds that bite and create hallucinations. GEMSTONES THAT DRUG YOU UP."
09/27/2011 page 297
89.0% ""Go t' hell, ye sea-spangled bitch." HA, welcome back, Nate."
09/27/2011 page 302
91.0% "....The fuck is going on. Nope. I'm not a fan. LOVE TRIANGLES...ugggghhhh"
09/27/2011 page 310
93.0% "Sedna got buuuuuurned. Point for Bertie."
09/27/2011 page 322
97.0% "Well when you phrase it that way, Sedna seems to be a shitty antagonist...:/"
09/27/2011 page 331
99.0% "Now the triangle is comical again. Ahhhhh, please make up your mind, Mantchev. I'd rather laugh at this thing that have it decided during a climax. Hurrgsdkfjn"
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