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Dream Things True

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  737 ratings  ·  216 reviews
A modern-day Romeo and Juliet story in which a wealthy Southern boy falls in love with an undocumented Mexican girl and together they face perils in their hostile Georgia town.

Evan, a soccer star and the nephew of a conservative Southern Senator, has never wanted for much -- except a functional family. Alma has lived in Georgia since she was two-years-old, excels in school
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published September 1st 2015 by St. Martin's Griffin
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Average rating 3.66  · 
Rating details
 ·  737 ratings  ·  216 reviews

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Jen Ryland
Mixed feelings.

I was excited about this book about a relationship between an undocumented girl and an upper middle class boy (her dad does his family's yard work). But to me, the mix of rich boy/poor girl romance and issue book was a combination that didn't always work.

That being said, there is a lot here to like. I thought there was a lot of good information in this book for readers who have an interest in immigration issues and how they play out for real people who could be our neighbors and f
Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)
See more of my reviews on The YA Kitten! My copy was an ARC I picked up at BEA 2015.
*most of the cast is POC, being that Alma's family is so large
*Alma's family is fairly poor and suffer from racial discrimination/racism

A few years ago, I read this little book called Burning that I loved and hated in equal measure. The Romani girl Lala’s POV chapters touched me and got me to root for her; the white boy’s chapters were odious in their offensiveness and made me want to feed him through a wood chip
Rachel  (APCB Reviews)
Jun 30, 2015 rated it it was ok
Although I had a few issues with this novel (mainly with the plotting and the characters' decisions), I really loved the romance and Marie's passion to share the injustices of the immigration issues that plague our nation. Review to come. ...more
I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher via NetGalley. This in no way impacted on my view.

Dream Things True was an enjoyable book to read, but was somewhat lacking. It is a modern day retelling of Romeo and Juliet, with Evan being a wealthy, privileged Southern boy, and Alma an undocumented Mexican girl, who has lived in America since she was two years old. As they fall in love, legislation that Evan's senator uncle has implemented threatens their relationship, and Alma is at risk o
nick (the infinite limits of love)

Dream Things True first came to my attention thanks to Nereyda at Mostly YA Book Obsessed. We were having a discussion about immigration laws and undocumented immigrants. I was looking forward to reading the book especially because the author seemed to be well-versed in the topic and I knew she would bring some authenticity to the subject in YA. While I completely appreciated everything that I learned about immigration laws and what it's like to be undocumented in the United States, a heartbreak
May 31, 2015 marked it as dnf
Shelves: i-own-it, signed
The first strike was describing skin color with FOOD.
The second strike was "Evan resisted the overwhelming temptation to look down at her vulnerable, almost naked body" and then shoving a t-shirt at her to cover herself up because apparently she looked too good in the bikini that she was wearing TO GO SWIMMING.

The final thing was just so much manufactured sexual tension that did not really work at all and came on extremely fast. It just wasn't believable.

It's not a bad book, but I thought I wo
Cora Tea Party Princess
Jun 23, 2016 marked it as to-read
I love how this one sounds, it doesn't sound like anything I've read before. Lots of mixed reviews though so fingers crossed? ...more
Oh man, it hurts me to give such a low rating to a book with such a relevant subject matter, but this book was actually becoming painful to read.

Alma and her family are undocumented immigrants living in Georgia. Her father runs a landscape and gardening business cutting lawns and pruning bushes for the rich elite of the town, and her aunts and uncles work at a chicken plant. Alma wants nothing more than to get a good education and get the hell out of her oppressive hometown, which doesn’t happen
Jessica Brooks
2.5 stars (for GR, because, with GR's rating system, 2 stars = "it was okay")*

Dream Things True is an interesting book. On one hand, it's all about immigration. On another, it's about how people with completely different backgrounds can come together, find something important in each other, and look out for one another. It's also about standing up for what you believe in, facing your mistakes, and righting your wrongs. So there's a lot going on, but a lot of the side plot doesn't really come to
Reading is my Escape
Alma thought back to the day she learned that she wasn’t in status – that she was a person who was here but not welcome, embedded in this place, but also somehow apart from it.

None of it mattered. None of it mattered because she was, as she had always known, one of the kids stuck in between.

Alma is a junior in high school, brilliant, with a bright future, but her family is undocumented and the threat of ICE is always looming. Alma wants to tell her new boyfriend, Evan, but she is ashamed, and
Mrs. Aloise
May 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Alma's family is full of secrets while Evan's is full of expectations. He's a soccer star from the privileged part of town and she's the landscaper's daughter. She wants to go to college, but is afraid that her family will be sent back to Mexico if she applies. He is expected to take an athletic scholarship. This is a heartfelt story about what happens when two young adults from very different backgrounds fall in love. This is a strong story with sympathetic characters. I learned so much from Al ...more
Later rerated to*: 3 Stars

*I'm rerating a lot of the books I read in the past to fit my current taste. Most of the time it's downrating books that I thought I really liked at the time but there are a few exceptions. :) And it'd be too much to try to reflect these changes on my blog, so the ratings will remain as the original ones on Xingsings.

3.5 Stars, Completed September 8, 2015

Dream Things True is a modern Romeo and Juliet-esque story about a wealthy, privileged southern boy falling in love w
I had that sudden impulse to discontinue when things went too mushy way too quickly. But I pushed through the initial discontentment thinking maybe there was reason why it needed to establish the relationship quite early in the game. Well, there was, but to me, the romance as merely an accessory to the conflict later on & that didn’t totally satisfy me.

This book has that kind of set-up where the boy is from an esteemed family that fell in love with the girl from the wrong side of the tracks. One
Stacy Moll
Sep 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The topic of this book couldn't have better timing. This is a subject that seems to divide everyone, and each side is very passionate about what they believe. I for one feel strongly, that if I lived in a place that didn't have much to offer my children and was violent, I would do anything in my power to get them to a place that would allow them the best life they could have. A also do not think that the majority of illegal people are criminals, they just want a better life. Additionally, I'm ti ...more
A.L. Player
Apr 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
(Review based on an ARC.)

Absolutely gorgeous! A touching love story, beautifully written, which sheds a light on the many difficulties faced by people who come to the US searching for a better life. Still, the book never feels preachy or overly dramatic. Alma and Evan are each endearing characters in their own right; they're warm and real. I also particularly loved Whit and Mary Catherine. I couldn't put the book down!
joey (thoughts and afterthoughts)
[See the full review at thoughts and afterthoughts.]

Rating: 3/5

Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr spoiler-less review:
— Set in Georgia (USA) and encompasses POC (Mexican) families, undocumented immigrants, race and discrimination, power and privilege, drugs, rape, and exoticism, among others
— Narrative is told in sporadic alternating perspectives between both MCs; writing integrates Spanish dialogue
— The romance jumps the gun; a bit instalust-y after a few chapters
— If you’ve seen “The
Mrs Mommy Booknerd
An important story about young love and undocumented families, In today's climate this book is even more relevant. It is one that tugs at the heartstrings. It captures what young love looks like and has a positive outlook. The characters are those you will fall in love with, root for and relate to. I think that this is an important read that both adults and young adults will love. ...more
Andrea at Reading Lark
Review Posted on Reading Lark 8/15/15:

Alma is the youngest daughter in a hard working Mexican family in Georgia. Her entire family works in the small community of Gilberton, Georgia in various labor intensive roles including landscaping and working at the local poultry plant. Alma craves more for her life. She wants college and a career not chicken feathers and fear. Alma and her family live with a constant cloud hanging over them due to their undocumente
Stefani Sloma
Jul 22, 2015 rated it liked it
Dream Things True is essentially a modern-day retelling of Romeo and Juliet but the boy is a white, upper-middle-class son of a senator and the girl is an undocumented immigrant from Mexico. In terms of the characters, I really appreciated how flawed everyone was, because it felt real and relatable, even though my life falls nowhere near either of these characters.

I’m sure most of you won’t be surprised when I say one of my main issues was the relationship – because it developed WAY too quickly.
Gabrielle (
As someone very familiar with undocumented immigrants and their movement, I was expecting a deeper, more involving story. I think the book does touch on this issue extensively, but at the same time, it wasn't anything new. It follows the Romeo and Juliet story from both perspectives, when I think it could've benefited more from just staying in Alma's perspective. However, I do think it's well-written and worth a read. Many could find this book and its themes enlightening. ...more
Sep 01, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
While I enjoyed this story that was sort of a re telling of Romeo and Juliet on modern times, the fact that the book dealt so heavily in immigration issues, took a little away from the love story being told. There was a nice juxtipitation between the two families lives, one of privilege and one of migrant workers. The characters were well written, along with supporting characters. All in all this is a nice story, with a background that shows the struggles of undocumented families.
Danielle (Love at First Page)
Mar 24, 2015 marked it as lost-interest-did-not-finish
Shelves: e-arc
I had to sadly DNF this one. The writing just wasn't clicking with me and the romance was bland and uninspired. I made it to about 20%, started skimming, and eventually called it quits around 50%. I think readers who can ignore the romance may find something of value in the book's discussion on illegal immigration and undocumented workers. ...more
Nina Rossing
Jul 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult, 2015
Lovely book about an undocumented immigrant girl who falls in love with a boy from an affluent and influential family. Sounds a bit cliche, perhaps, but the story is realistic, at times heartbreaking, and the two protagonists are completely believable. There are a few minor plots that weren't necessary, but okay. This is a good book.
Sep 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
I refuse to accept an ending like that. I need an epilogue!!
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
I wanted to like this one more than I did. *review to come*
disclaimer: this novel was provided to me by the publisher via netgalley, but all opinions are my own

It’s clear from her writing that Marie Marquardt has plenty of experience working for and with undocumented immigrants – her novel is an addictive and emotionally fraught depiction of the United State’s frustrating, discriminatory, and obstructive legal policy towards undocumented immigrants. The novel is a politically nuanced exploration of the relationship between a bright young girl whose poli
3.5 stars.

This book is incredibly relevant - it primarily discusses the impacts and realities of the lives of undocumented immigrants, ICE, and cross-cultural relationships. It also discusses broken families, addiction and sexual assault. The last two are with side characters. This book was not an easy read. The writing flowed well, but the topics were hard, and it was very emotional.

I liked most of the side characters, such as Mary Catherine and Whit. They were cool, and Whit was pretty well
Jul 17, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: age-ya, owned-novels
Okay, so I think this is an important book and a lot of teens should read it. It gives a lot of good and valid information about immigration and being undocumented as well as sexual assault. I absolutely loved the way the Spanish was done in this. Not everything was translated or repeated. There was enough so that non-spanish speakers could still understand, but it just let it happen and I loved that. I feel like Spanish in books can be very stilted, but I didn't get that from this book.

Jan 22, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

I enjoyed the characters and relations but I had a few issues but overall I definitely enjoyed it.
Jul 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Before I moved to West Virginia, I lived in Greeley, Colorado, for many years. Aside from the university that I worked at, the largest employer in town was a meat-packing plant, many of whose employees were undocumented immigrants. One weekday morning in 2006, I was driving past the plant on my way to my dentist's when traffic came to a halt. A policeman had stopped oncoming traffic so that two large buses could drive through the gated entrance. Looking around, I was startled to see swarms of me ...more
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I am an author of young adult novels, a college professor, and an immigration advocate.

How are these all connected? After many years as a researcher, service provider, and – most importantly – friend with immigrants to Georgia, I felt frustrated. I often spoke to groups about immigration and the need for immigration reform. I offered clear, rational explanations and data on why our immigration sy

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