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The Dream Alchemist

(Somnus #1)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  322 ratings  ·  59 reviews
When the sun goes down, their passion awakens…and so do their nightmares.

Centuries ago, a man with Bryn Llewelyn’s dreamwalking ability would have been a shaman or a priest. In this time, he’s merely exhausted, strung out on too much caffeine and too little sleep.

Sleep means descent into Somnus—an alternate reality constructed of the combined dreaming consciousness of
Published December 2nd 2014 by Samhain Publishing
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Average rating 3.84  · 
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Written December 30, 2014

3 1/2 Stars - Adventurous and kind of interesting but also 'strange'
Finished reading November 11, 2014
Full review closer to publishing date Dec 2. I need to collect my thoughts and think more about my impressions.

I should of course have written down my thoughts then directly in November, but I packed my bags for a longer vacation trip, came home ... and time passed. Now, next to two months later, is it kind of too late, and the fact that I have so very difficult to s
Vanessa North
Dec 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Forgive my potty mouth, but this book fucking rocks.
Highly recommend!
I felt for sure that this would be 5 star read. I asked for an ARC because of the blurb, it sounded really complex but fascinating. The storyline was great, really well written, the world building superb, the guy's eyes on the cover were so mesmerizing (hehe) and for 80% of the story, that was the case...I just couldn't stop reading it and then BOOM!! I hit a wall, it felt rushed and absolutely everything I'd thought would happen, the who, the why and the WTF?? actually did happen...And I was s ...more
Sep 11, 2014 added it

Joanna Chambers is a genius.

♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣
4.5 Dreamwalker Dreams over on Prism Book Alliance

Dream walkers. Who are they? And why would one do all that he can to delay falling asleep? This is Bryn. Equally mysterious is an early question and Bryn’s reply… something is definitely not right. Color me intrigued.

Chambers is so good at using physicality, physical reactions, as a way of conveying emotion: churning stomach as opposed to simple fear, fisting hands as opposed to thin irritation. It allows me to feel connected and tuned in at
Nov 16, 2014 rated it liked it
Boys in Our Books tackled another group read...
I was looking forward to my first Chambers book.
*womp womp*

It didn't turn out as planned.
Check it out tomorrow...

Sep 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review
I really enjoyed this book, it's a great UF/Fantasy mix with some PRN on top. It's very well written with quite a novel plot for it's genre which is always refreshing. The MC's and other prominent characters are all fantastic and one of my most alluring traits of any book is strong secretive sub plots, which this book was full of. There is loads more to come and I can't wait for book two. This has the potential to be an excellent series within it's genre. I need book two NOW.
Oct 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: erotica, m-m, fantasy
I found the MC's really interesting and hot, but I got a little lost in the plot. At some point, I didn't knew how many realities there were. The idea of the book is good though... ...more
Karen Wellsbury
Sep 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to be involved in this relatively early on, and I thought then, and think now that it's a great fun book, with a remarkable new world.

The premise of Somnus, is fantastic, a world within a world - a different reality.

Bryn, is an intriguing and attractive character, so believing that he's not up to much, when in reality he is so much more and better.
Lazslo, waiting for someone to melt the ice in his heart, he's trapped but only vaguely realises it.

These two, are the answers to e
Sep 13, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mm, meh, pnr, mny

description description

The Dream Alchemist is quite a detour for Chambers since she is known for her historical romance work. This is a paranormal romance, or maybe even romance with fantastical elements.

I was really looking forward to this story because description gave of Sandman vibe, but yeah... it was nothing like that.
Despite the promising blurb, this book simply didn't work for me the way I thought it would:

1)World building - considering this is first book in series and it's a series named after alternate drea
3.5 stars

Bryn Llewelyn isn't living the best of life. He's working dead-end jobs, only has a roof over his head because he managed to become the sole heir of a family friend, and he's not too happy with his life as a 'dreamwalker' (someone who is conscious in Somnus, the dream world). Laszlo Grimm is successful, ambitious, and doesn't have to work hard to get someone to warm his bed. But he's unable to feel anything beyond the physical, a result of the abuse-like sleep disorder treatment he rece

3.5 stars

What would you do if your dreams could become a separate reality? What if you could control your dreams? And what if those dreams started slowly shifting into a waking nightmare?

Bryn has this ability to dream walk; he’s a dreamwalker. When he sleeps, he enters Somnus, or the dreamscapes of others. The ‘others’ are we common people, or drones, who can supply dream architecture but can’t manipulate it. Bryn can. He and his dreamwalker pals have lots of exciting skills when in Somnus. And
Oct 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m, reviews
3.5 stars - An interesting and imaginative read, although I had a few issues.

The story: It's our world, but there are those who exist who can "dreamwalk" or when they sleep, they enter the dreamworld of Somnus, lucid and having powers, while drone-like zombies mill around (that's us when we're sleeping.)

The first time dreamwalker Bryn meets Laszlo, it's when he's visiting this dream world. They don't know each other in the waking world, but that meeting starts a chain-reaction of realizations,
Sep 20, 2014 rated it liked it
While parts of this were well written, it lacked depth in world building. I just couldn't see the vision and it felt flat and 2 dimensional. Parts of the relationship seemed rushed and insta love. I really wanted to like this, I've loved this authors historicals and I adore paranormal and urban fantasy, but it just didn't work for me. ...more
Nov 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I'm in. Question: should I wait for the other books in this series to be published FIRST? History would suggest YES. But ....... I can't wait!

5.0 Stars
Holy hell. That was awesome. Susan is right. Joanna Chambers is a genius. When can I get book 2?!??!?

Review to come.
Hmm. Great concept as a whole, but too much exposition. Some bits felt like a lecture. Maybe the next one will be less so because the groundwork has been laid here.
Nov 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
My reluctance to purchase and download this novel stems from my fear that an author able to write such a compelling historical m/m series,Enlightened meant that I wasn't sure she'd be able to pull off a modern day, alternative world story.
How wrong was I?
This was a great first novel in a to-be-written series of three. I use the term "Alternative World" but actually the story is set in current day London, the alternative world being the land-of-nod, or the place where we go when falling to sleep.
Jessie Potts
Nov 29, 2014 rated it liked it

Why you should read it: I've read a couple dream-walker books and love the idea. I mean, what happens when we dream? So I was happy to pick this one up. Joanna does a great job differentiating hers, and I enjoyed Bryn. Bryn can manipulate dreams in Somnus. He doesn't always trust his gift, though, and when he starts feeling a dark force at the edge of Somnus, he doesn't know what it wants. We also have Lazlo (poor guy), and the two together, both in Somnus and real life, are fun to watch. They s
Sep 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic! A totally convincing world, compelling characters, and a unique story

Why didn't I read this book before? It's fantastic. The author creates a totally convincing world, compelling characters, and a unique story through elegant yet efficient prose.

The main characters are dreamwalkers, people whose conscious selves can shift to another dimension, called Somnus, where all of our dreams are projected when we sleep. Bryn Llewellyn is a slender, rough, down and out twenty-something struggli
Sherry is on hiatus for health (selfcare) reasons
It felt a bit drawn out and the attraction between Blyn and Laszlo didn't really grab me so I skipped most of the sex scenes. But I think the concept of dreamwalking is quite interesting and I'm kind of curious about Dylan and Finn and what kind of role they are playing in the big picture so I just might pick up the next volume when/if it's released.

For now I think I'll stick to Joanna Chambers's historical novels since they seem to be more to my liking.
T.M. Smith
Nov 24, 2014 rated it liked it
3.5/5 stars...

Bryn Llewelyn lives on Red Bull with Vodka and caffeine in an attempt not to sleep. When he sleeps he doesn’t dream, he wakes in an alternate reality known as Somnus where Bryn is a sleepwalker. His gift in Somnus is continually evolving though, and most recently he has shown a talent for alchemy as well. When the shadow of a man tries to catch him in Somnus, intent on doing wickedly sexy things to Bryn, he tries harder to stay awake when he is in reality. Then he meets that man a
Joanna did it again! Another wonderfully written novel, sweet slow developing romance. Interesting and real feeling characters (even in a Paranormal environment..). Though I'm not sure I"d be able to explain this novel, I REALLY enjoyed it. It was such a RIDE! I was drawn into Somnus and into the main character's struggle unable to put the book down.

Joanna build a mesmerizing world of a dreams called Somnus. In there I think we all go when we sleep but most of us are "Drones", having our dreams
Joyfully Jay
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jay
A Joyfully Jay review.

5 stars

Wow, this was an incredible story, you guys. I started it and I could barely put it down. Chambers has created such a wonderfully fascinating world in this book and I was blown away by the fabulous detail and the creative world building. I wish that my explanation of the plot could better capture how masterful this story is, and I really fear I am not doing it justice. Partly I am trying not to give too much aware here. As the story continues we learn more about Bry
Oct 06, 2015 rated it liked it
This was both fascinating and frustrating. Somnus, the dream world, had delightful potential but I didn't feel like it was explored well enough. There were many potentially-interesting characters, but I didn't quite feel like I got to know any of them well enough. And there were clearly-evil characters, and characters who were set up to be evil, and characters who were unintentionally evil, but no clear motivations for any of them.

Still interesting. And I thoroughly enjoyed the relationship betw
Jan 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-e-things, queer, lgbtq, sff
Very cool. I really liked this. It's a neat story and a neat world with neat characters. The ending felt a little rushed, but I loved reading this. There's a lot of set-up here for the next book and it makes me really keen for the second instalment. The romance is a little on the insta-love side, but it's a nice romance and I really like the main characters. I loved the detailed world and the whole idea of the story. The writing is lovely, as it always is from Joanna Chambers. This is a very coo ...more
A satisfying build-up (though slightly over-reliant on the instalust plot device), but the eventual resolution felt a bit too easy and tidy.
4.25 stars.

Fascinating world-building and memorable characters..can't wait for the 2nd book!
Dec 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Not that I expected less from Ms Chambers, but it's a wonderful, plot-heavy book with fresh, engaging worldbuilding, and fantastic characters, both the main and the supporting ones. ...more
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Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
DreamIng and awakening

I really enjoyed this book. Read it in one sitting, which is unusual for my ADD style of reading. It reminded me of great fantasy stories I used to read as a teenager - 100 years ago.
Bryn and Laszlo make an interesting couple. At first I thought it was a bit cliché: a rich, unfeeling guy awakened to true love by a poor but loving guy...but it turned out to be more. Laszlo isn't just unfeeling, he's been anesthetized to feeling, conditioned into an aggressive acquirer of bu
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