Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Gossamer” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


3.88  ·  Rating details ·  13,210 Ratings  ·  1,579 Reviews
Where do dreams come from? What stealthy nighttime messengers are the guardians of our most deeply hidden hopes and our half-forgotten fears? Drawing on her rich imagination, two-time Newbery winner Lois Lowry confronts these questions and explores the conflicts between the gentle bits and pieces of the past that come to life in dream, and the darker horrors that find thei ...more
Hardcover, Large Print, 153 pages
Published September 1st 2006 by Thorndike Press (first published January 1st 2006)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Gossamer, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Lexxy I had to at school. did you like the book?
Lucas Yumul kids may read it but I suggest that if your a parent read it with them since there may be words and terms they won't understand. Lois Lowry is a kid-…morekids may read it but I suggest that if your a parent read it with them since there may be words and terms they won't understand. Lois Lowry is a kid- friendly writer with a big imagination.(less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Mar 15, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a sweet, fairy tale like book about dreams and where they come from, that is very touching.."
Sep 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First of all, I really love Lois Lowry. That being said, I loved this as much or maybe even more than The Giver, her most famous book. This is the story of little mythic creatures that give us our dreams. I loved the idea of how and why we have dreams and nightmares, and fell in love with the characters in the story. I also loved that she didn't tie up the whole thing with a nice neat bow. . . the ending was satisfying, but like life, unfinished.
Aug 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful, exquisite. This is such an enchanting book. Yet, it's a quick read, easily just one sitting, and you need some tissues as it'll go right to your heart. I absolutely loved it! It's original, beautifully written, close to a fairy tale and ever so touching unlike anything I have read. Highly recommend this book. In fact, it's going on my favorite list.
Amanda Cook
Jun 18, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: young adults, people who appreciate fantasy
This novel was a great departure from the trilogy of Lowry books I had just finished reading (The giver, Gathering Blue, Messenger). It's a fast read, since it's written for preteens/teenagers, but I think adults could appreciate the story and Lowry's writing style, as well. The book tries to answer questions about dreams and their origins and plays with a great narrative style by switching between reality and imagination. The story centers around both the real world of an old woman trying to he ...more
Mar 13, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

This one was truly a child's book. The print was GINORMOUS (aka gigantically enormous. hugantic? hah) boldface and the book was only 144 pages but I struggled to finish this book. Boring as crap. I have an issue swallowing words like 'flutter' and 'shimmer' and 'twirling'when they are being used repeatedly ...oh and the ridiculous names (oldest one, littlest one, fastidous)...

Back to the book review. There are these little fairy like creatures (forgot what they are called) that come into yo
Littlest One and her teacher, Thin Elderly, are tiny creatures whose job it is to touch beloved objects and then piece the bits of memory and emotion therein into dreams for humans. It is a wonderful vocation, but not without its dangers: there are also the Sinisteeds, terrible creatures that plague people with nightmares. Perhaps most frightening of all, dream-givers like Littlest One and Thin Elderly can become Sinisteeds if they don't do their work carefully.

Littlest One and Thin Elderly are
Harold Ogle
This is an entertaining little book about fairy-like creatures who are responsible for human dreaming, and their rivalry with the Sinisteeds who inflict nightmares on humans. It's also about a broken home with a neglectful mother, an abusive father, and a broken young boy, as well as how love can go a fair way to healing the wounds of parental abuse and neglect.

Lowry uses the device of "benevolent aliens trying to understand humans" with the 'dream-givers' to explain quite a lot of the action in
Samantha Cornejo
I thought that this book was very interesting because of the change of perspectives from the human world to the dream giving world, the world of the Heap. I loved how Littlest and Thin Elderly's words were so deep that it didn't feel apart of the book, it felt as though they were talking to us. Plus, their time dream-giving experience was very adventurous, and their way of collecting memories and bestowing dreams seemed so creative, but also as if that is what happens in real life. Overall, I di ...more
Apr 21, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes a quiet, poetic book
Susan and Lisa were right! I loved this book. It is a very quiet, whimsical story, but it still packs a punch. Lois Lowry is not famous for nothing. I was intrigued by how much I felt for the main characters, the dream-givers, without ever knowing what they truly looked like. This book has made me think differently about dreams, nightmares, memories, and people's ability to change. And the importance of pets, souvenirs, and talismans (talismen?).
Sep 14, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: youngadult
Interesting book. My wife loved it - said it was one of her favorites. I am a little less enthusiastic about it. Still, it's a good story with a neat premise (there are imaginary beings that grant people dreams and others than give nightmares and sleeping humans are the proxy for their war). Worth reading if you like any other Lois Lowry book. She's consistently inventive.
Barb Middleton
Oct 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: realistic
Not your typical tale. Of course, Lois Lowry and the word, typical, don't go hand-in-hand. Original... Great writer... Risk-taker... Those are words I associate with her. Pick your superlative. But typical? No way. This tale has more echoes of surrealism than realism with surprising juxtapositions of dreams and reality.

Littlest is being trained by Fastidious to bestow dreams on humans, and yes, the latter is hard-to-please. Littlest asks too many questions, plays, and is off-task when the two
Aug 12, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Dreamers
What is beyond the world of sleep? Where do our dreams come from? Lois Lowry uses her exquisite imagination to explain one of the most interesting parts of life, and makes it even more mysterious. People of all ages will find this an interesting way to explain dreams. Also, the way the story is worked and connected is wonderful and exciting. This is a good and uplifting story of a not so good start of a life for a child.
Nov 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, ya, 2009
Wonderfull! A little book, simple, but packs a punch. Why can't Lois Lowry's books be just a little longer?
Rivka Ray
Jan 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens
I wish my brain could remember things better. I basically forgot all the important stuff that happened in this book. I guess that what rereading is for :)
Isabella Garcia
May 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really liked the book. I thought it was boring at first, but then the book got better in the end.
Cait (Paper Fury)
Lois Lowry is one of my favourite authors – ever. Her style is so simplistic, yet flowing and beautiful, and she can hook you in with the smallest of plot twist or vividly written picture. She’s amazing. Her style is as powerful as ever in GOSSAMER, but in all honesty, this book was not what I expected.

Having a different idea of what the book would be like, I went into it with totally wrote expectations. I had no idea it was going to be about dream-folk and a troubled foster-care-kid. After the
The dream-givers creep around a dark house in the middle of the night. They are compassionate beings who visit humans at night. They touch objects, gather memories, and return them in the form of happy dreams to those that live in the house they are assigned to. The Sinisteeds,inflict nightmares and sometimes travel in frightening Hordes. Littlest and Thin Elderly care for a lonely old woman and a foster child named John. John has endured an abusive father who forces him to eat dog food after at ...more
Jul 13, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I LOVE Lois Lowry! She amazes me with her story telling skills. Again, the story is so simple yet so complex at the same time. In less than 150 pages, she managed to create an entire "imaginary" world and 3 well-developed human characters without losing anything in terms of theme and conflict. Gossamer is a wonderful character, Fastidious annoys me appropriately, and I admire Thin Elderly's patience with Gossamer/Littlest. John is a realistic character, considering what he's gone through, and I ...more
Mar 08, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 3rd-6th graders
I listened to this one on CD, and the performed did a great job. It would be good for younger readers.

This book is a fictional story about dreams and nightmares. It follows a young gossamer and her teacher as they give pleasant dreams to an older woman and a young boy named John who is staying in her home as a foster child. Although the story is told mainly through the eyes of the young gossamer, the reader is able to follow the struggles and success of all of the characters. It is a great mot
I did not like this book as much as "The Giver." I think Lowry had a pretty creative idea when she envisioned creatures that give dreams, but the story did not interest me that much. I found myself more interested in the "guardians of the dreams" than the actual humans, and even then I found the names of the guardians somewhat silly and the whole process of touching fragments to give the humans something to dream about ridiculous. My dreams generally have nothing to do with anything lying around ...more
The Reading Countess
Beautiful tale of how dreams and nightmares visit us. The characters are richly drawn. I'm not sure how I avoided reading this one for so long. Lois Lowry can do no wrong.

First paragraph is truly remarkable and a great mentor for strong leads (setting the scene):

An owl called, its shuddering hoots repeating mournfully in the distance. Somewhere nearby, heavy wings swooped and a young rabbit, captured by sharp talons, shrieked as he was lifted to his doom. Startled, a raccoon looked up with brigh
Littlest One is the newest Dream Giver in her heap. Playfull, laughing, and barely visible she lightly touches the handful of things in a little boy's room, crafting dreams to send him each night.

Gossamer is a beautiful story filled with wonder, hope and love. Lowry has done a brilliant job with her writing and every part of the story is perfect and well crafted. This is a fun and quick read that is somehow as dreamy and intangible as the title. It left me smiling and glad to have read it. A pe
I expected a good read... And this did not disappoint.

I've read the first few pages, and I dare say that the fresh experience and plot devices are really pulling me in. Can't wait to get through the entire book.

[I've read and adored [book:Gathering Blue|12936], as well as The Giver (and I've been pining over Messenger, lol). Once I saw this book on sale, I knew I just had to get it!]
Nov 12, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 5th graders
In Gossamer by Lois Lowry, Littlest One creeps in the middle of the night practicing dream-giving on an elderly woman and her sleeping dog. Toby is training to be a dream-giver, which is someone who gathers shreds of memories and gives them back as dreams. Then the elderly woman takes in a foster child who is an eight-year old boy named John. Littlest One now has to take on a great challenge, she must try to help John with his bad dreams. This book is an interesting fantasy that offers a clever ...more
Jul 30, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kidsandteenbooks
This book brings a lot of depth to those little girls who do believe in fairies by giving them a purpose in bringing dreams to people and fighting the dark forces that bring nightmares. Inspiring with a touch of magic that left some up to the imagination (isn't it nice when everything isn't spelled out for you)...

May 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
I highly recommend this book to young and old alike. It is a delightful and insightful children's book that will leave you with a feeling of gossamer which is hard to just have to read it. Though a fantastical perspective on dreaming, it has enough real elements to capture the fascination of multiple kinds of readers.
Jan 12, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely love this book. The title is absolutely perfect for it, simply because it's a light feeling that the book gives off. There are dark tones in the story, but you fall in love with all of the characters and the traces of fancy are just wonderful.
Martina Munoz
Mar 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was really good. Really fictional, but great.
I liked the part when New Littlest is introduced and when Littlest One becomes Gossamer.
I think Lois Lowry books are really enjoyable.
It is a great book.
Madeleine Rose
Jan 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this book is filled with fantasy creatures and cute characters. when i finished reading this book, the ending was one of the sweetest and cutest endings i have ever read. it shows friendship and love. i highly recomend reading this book. i promise you that you wont be disapointed.
Mar 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
At simply 144 pages Gossamer brings more heart and emotions than most books of 300+ pages. A touching story about the healing power of dreams and the imaginary creatures they come from. Simple. Straightforward. Sincere. As always, another Lois Lowry gem.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Future Teachers, ...: Review #2 - Emma Archer 1 1 Nov 18, 2016 06:12PM  
gossmaer 2 3 Feb 12, 2016 11:27AM  
Madison Mega-Mara...: #42 Gossamer 1 1 Apr 29, 2014 03:01PM  
  • Edward's Eyes
  • A Drowned Maiden's Hair
  • Sahara Special
  • The Memory Bank
  • Each Little Bird that Sings
  • The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs
  • Drita, My Homegirl
  • Olivia Kidney
  • Willow Run
  • The Young Man and the Sea (After Words)
  • One-Handed Catch
  • Dexter the Tough
  • On The Wings of Heroes
  • Heart of a Shepherd
  • The Liberation of Gabriel King
  • Diamonds in the Shadow
  • Way Down Deep (Way Down Deep, #1)
  • Listening for Lions
Taken from Lowry's website:
"I’ve always felt that I was fortunate to have been born the middle child of three. My older sister, Helen, was very much like our mother: gentle, family-oriented, eager to please. Little brother Jon was the only boy and had interests that he shared with Dad; together they were always working on electric trains and erector sets; and later, when Jon was older, they always
More about Lois Lowry...
“And you know what, Thin Elderly? Sad parts are important. If I ever get to train a new young dreamgiver, that's one of the things I'll teach: that you must include the sad parts, because they are part of the story, and they have to be part of the dreams.” 15 likes
“Why do some of us turn menacing?' she whispered.” 8 likes
More quotes…