When Ben and Annie are reunited with their daughter, it says "the college student they will never meet who rescued her from the fire." Did it come out and say that Matt died, or are we just supposed to assume he died in the fire as if it is kind of like one of his Trolley Problem philosophical questions? (hide spoiler)]
These days, science doesn’t take much interest in dreams.
2½ stars. I'm rating this purely based on my personal enjoyment and connection with the narrative. Some people are going to love this book.
I read Walker's The Age of Miracles more than six years ago, didn't love it, but wanted to give her another try. I know my tastes have changed. Maybe even the author had changed, too. As it turns out, my review of her debut is fairly similar to how I feel about The Dreamers, comma splices aside.
This narrative style! From the first paragraph I knew I was going to be so pulled into this story, whatever it was going to be, by the writing. There is something about it, the way Karen Thompson Walker tells this story. It’s third person narrative and I felt removed as if I was watching this on film or on the stage but at the same time there’s an intimacy that affords the reader a connection to these characters, their fears, their loneliness, their pasts, and their dreams from this deep sleep. ...more
The premise is not a new one. There have been many books written and movies made of a virus or some alien illness infecting humans and making them behave in one way or another. In this case whatever this is, makes humans f ...more
College. A time when teens begin the transformation into adulthood... Truly, just teenagers experiencing life away from home for the first time. Wide-eyed excitement, anticipation and seemingly endless opportunities the world has to offer them.
But at an un-assuming, small college in Santa Lora California, that idyllic life is about to change forever.
When Kara comes home unusually early from a night of drinking, she slips quietly into her dorm, and climbs into her bunkbed. The next morning, h ...more
Many are "trapped" not by a captor, but by their own slumber.
I was captivated immediately from page one. A frightful opening made me ever so curious to read on...
This author's writing style was mesmerizing and magical . I was absorbed in her words and the fictional town in California. Literary fiction at its best without needless side stories or wasted dialogue. The story flows effortlessly and I adored it.
It begins with some college ...more
“We sleep in order to forget.”
Sadly I didn’t love this as much as everyone else seems to. It looked like it would be right up my street – a strange illness overcomes a small town in California and people are falling asleep, not waking up for anything. But unfortunately I was still left disappointed.
The Dreamers follows a collection of characters – constantly flicking between them. From the college students where the virus first appears, to two young girls living alone in a house after thei ...more
Me? Liking a sci-fi book? It’s true!
And no, I did not undergo electric shock therapy. This book is almost pogo-stick worthy, it’s so damn good. I don’t even know what category this book fits into. To me, it’s not pure sci-fi, really. Is there such a thing as disaster books, like there are disaster movies? Because that’s what it is. It’s not about aliens or weird gadgets; it’s about a virus, a sleeping sickness, that takes over a college town. Maybe it should be called sci-fi light. Well, whatev ...more
Needless to say, it might not have been the best idea to finish Karen Thompson Walker's The Dreamers just before bed, but luckily I'm here to tell you about it.
"The only way to tell some stories is with the oldest, mos ...more
In Santa Lora, California, a College Student, named Kara, falls into a deep dream filled sleep. No one can wake her. She is the first of many.
Mei was Kara’s roommate, she and several other survivors on Kara’s floor, including a teenager named Matthew, have been quarantined. Two sisters, Sara and Libby are left to fend for themselves after their father succumbs to sleep. Around town, there are armed guards, keeping the uninfected together in one place. Supermarkets are out of food and ...more
The Dreamers is a different sort of read for me, and I’m grateful I read it. The premise? A disease is affecting a college town causing unstoppable sleep and vividly strange dreams.
It all starts at a university in Southern California when a student, Kara, falls asleep and no one can rouse her, not her roommate, Mei, and not even the doctors at the hospital. That event is then followed by another student, and then another, and then the town is sieged with pani ...more
”We all end in the ocean
We all start in the streams
We're all carried along
By the river of dreams
“In the middle of the night”
-- The River of Dreams, Billy Joel, Songwriters: Billy Joel
“Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream.”
—A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
It begins at the college.
A girl named Kara. A party. She leaves, not feeling well, thinking she is coming down with something, she is so very, very tired. She makes it back to her dorm room, and falls aslee ...more
Right book at the right ti ...more
A fantastic buddy read with my friend Marialyce, this beautifully written book hit all the right notes with everything I love in a novel. The premise is not a new one but the story Thompson writes is unique and compelling. What makes this book different is the thoughtful nature of the writing, the dreamy quality, and the brilliant turns of phrases. This is not a horror/sci-fi/thriller, but a quiet character study.
A sleeping sickness strikes a quiet, fictional college town in Californi ...more
Santa Lora is a small college-town community. A quiet town where not much happens, until a sleeping epidemic starts. Beginning within the college dormitory, students begin to fall into a deep sleep, leaving them in a semi-conscious state, unable to be woken. Doctors have never encountered this disease. Panic spreads, as does this disease - areas are isolated, quarantines set up, make-shift hospital areas created, emergency help is sent. How do ...more
I have never heard of Karen Thompson Walker before, but felt intrigued by the book description on NetGalley. I am so glad I have read this book. It is one of the fabulous finds, a book you pick by instinct and left you amazed.
I can summarise this as a borderline science fiction character drama- just like Station Eleven it swirls around lives of a bunch of people after a catastrophe- although in this ...more
The scariest things sometimes are NOT visible to the naked eye, but appear in our dreams.
Something has happened in the small, isolated town of Santa Lora, population 12,106. "At first they blame it on the air." Some say it may have been here before, a curse perhaps....decades ago. This time it begins at a college with a young girl who doesn't feel well, thinks she might have the flu, and is so tired sh...more
This was a fascinating-eerie story. Mysterious right from the beginning.
Head-scratching puzzle of a novel....
We keep hearing how important sleep is- that lack of sleep is the cause for many health issues.
Perhaps this college town with hundreds sleeping are revitalizing their minds and body. Too many college exams and late night parties are a health hazard.
I had a little fun with this novel - my own cuckoo mind was captured by the dreamy-atmosphere. As the character ...more
Karen Thompson Walker’s sophomore novel, The Dreamers, took me by storm. Excuse the cliché, but it swept me up inside of an imaginative world that was close enough to reality as to not be science fiction but close enough to an altered reality as to border dystopia. The sickness sweeping the town took on a life of its own—the true antagonist in t ...more
“To sleep, perchance to dream” and dream and dream and dream.....
Sometimes a book can force you into places you only take a moment to think about. At other times, a book can bring you to places where your brain engages thinking in many diverse directions long after the last word was read. The book, The Dreamers, was such a book that made you not only think but wonder about the very things that govern our being....the brain, the fear of illnesses, and the power of sleep and dreams.
"At first, they blamed the air. It's an old idea, a poison by the ether, a danger carried by the wind."
It appears that while the victims sleep t ...more
That night, the blind man dreamt that he was blind.
It’s an apt choice for more reasons than one. While Blindness is a much more stylistically experimental, political & violent book, The Dreamers shares with it a tone – a sort of other-worldiness, a sense of life thrown off-kilter that isn’t quite sci-fi but isn’t quite 'real' life either.
The Dreamers involves a small-scale disaster – an outbreak of a mysterious sleeping ...more
It starts with Kara, one of the girls in the dorm, coming back to her room, falling asleep and not waking up. Mei, her roommate cannot wake her up. So, they take her to the hospital. Then, another and another… As the cases grow, they apply a quarantine for the town to prevent it spreading through the nation. So, no-one can enter, no-one ...more
The things that could have happened but did not are just as crucial to a life as all the things that do.
A college freshman falls asleep and doesn't wake up. As the days pass, more students fall into a deep slumber—their hearts continue to beat, but they can't be roused. Authorities are mystified by the mysterious affliction that spreads like wildfire through the community. Only one thing is certain: the brain activity of "the dreamers" exceeds all previous recordings of both sleeping and awa ...more