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Dream Sequence

3.04  ·  Rating details ·  246 ratings  ·  57 reviews
Henry Banks, a brilliant but narcissistic young actor, is prepared to go to any length for a role, to capitalise on his successes in television drama by securing the lead in the latest film by a celebrated Spanish director. He is on the brink of the next step – very close to achieving intellectual credibility and some serious celebrity.

However, Henry has – unwittingly –
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Published January 31st 2019 by Vintage Digital
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Average rating 3.04  · 
Rating details
 ·  246 ratings  ·  57 reviews


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Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/

A better title for Dream Sequence might have been Much Ado About Nothing, but I think that one may have already been taken.

Kristin is a wealthy divorcee from Philadelphia who spends most of her time redecorating her home in the style she is accustomed to and writing correspondence a couple of times a week. Henry is a British actor who has starred in the hottest show on television for the past several years and is now looking to land an
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Ova - Excuse My Reading
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is one of the bizarrely beautiful books, it just doesn't surprise you that the writer, Adam Foulds also writes poetry, it adds up. I really enjoyed reading this, it's like a capsule I swallowed in one gulp.
I admired the way Foulds portrayed the self-centrist, superficial and from time to time annoying actor Henry. It was a pleasure to read him being "assessed" by the weird but wonderful(!) genius director, the scene will be stuck in my head forever. The whole book is a parody of how weird
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Anni
Feb 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There are tragi-comic elements to this familiar literary theme of obsession with an unattainable object of desire. The narration switches between the two main characters - one a narcissistic actor and the other, his disturbed and delusional female stalker, with fateful (and indeed fatal) consequences. Their unlikely intertwined destiny is marked with portentous synchronicity: a Spider-Man toy which echoes the actor’s upcoming movie role as a super hero, and the connection of the inevitable ...more
Neil
Feb 16, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley, 2019
Henry Banks has spent the last six years in The Grange, a British TV series that we gather is something a bit like Downton Abbey. As he enters our story, he finds himself a front-runner for the lead role in the next Miguel Garcia movie. This is the kind of break aspiring actors pray for: Garcia makes art not just films and taking the lead in one of his productions would really put Henry on the map.

Meanwhile, and this is where the book actually opens, Kristin is recently divorced and now living
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Rebecca
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(3.5) It’s impossible to forget the title as you’re reading this: a number of the scenes are deliberately strange and dreamlike as if to make you question what’s fantasy and what’s reality. Henry has to starve himself to play the lead role in the new Miguel García* film, a huge step up from his recent work in television. Soon his star is on the rise, with an appearance at a film festival in Qatar and a rumored role in the new Marvel movie. Kristin, who bumped into Henry at an airport two years ...more
SueKich
Feb 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Vanity meets delusion.

Henry Banks is a successful and blindingly handsome television star hoping to land the lead in a prestigious film by a celebrated Spanish director. Across the Atlantic, lonely divorcée Kirstin has become obsessed with Henry’s British TV show and having briefly encountered him once at an airport, she believes the two of them are destined for one another.

In a tightly written novel that comes in at just over two hundred pages, Adam Foulds gives us two closely observed
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Sarah
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, netgalley
Dream Sequence is ostensibly a story about a woman who becomes obsessed with an actor and a book about "psychological damage, stalking, and the perils of celebrity" (quote taken from the blurb). But what it is actually about it something quite different - it's more of a portrait of a boring and self absorbed actor, and 60 something percent in to the book the woman (Kristin) actually becomes part of the narrative before the rushed ending falls flat. It was just really hard to believe in the ...more
Sid Nuncius
Feb 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
I’m a bit ambivalent this book. It has good things about it but in the end I didn’t think it amounted to much.

Dream Sequence is the story (although the description “story” might be pushing it a bit) of Henry, a successful English TV actor hoping to be about to make it big in films and Kristin, a comfortably wealthy, drifting divorcée in the USA who once exchanged a word or two with Henry in passing at an airport and has now become obsessed with him, believing their love to be decreed by fate. We
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Eleanor
Dec 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I requested this because, you know, Adam Foulds, but I wasn't expecting to like it nearly as much as I did. It's the story of two people: one, Henry, is an up-and-coming actor who's about to break out of the TV period drama circuit with a starring role in a film by a major director; the other, Kirstin, is an American divorcée who bumped into him at an airport a year ago, and who has since been consumed by the delusion that they are meant to be together. It's not anything like the last Foulds ...more
Krista
Oct 04, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: can-con, 2019
During the days he haunted the empty building. He felt like a hallucination, a collective delusion the people in the other flats were having, a daydream while they sat at their desks or in meetings. That was what he was, he realized in a spate of rapid thoughts, standing in the middle of the room with his head full of Mike's lines, that was his task, to be the dream of other people.

Dream Sequence is a short and languorous read, with more power in the small observations and short passages than
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Penny (Literary Hoarders)
2.5 stars

Why is this on the Giller longlist? (Earlier this week I puzzled over the absence of a certain Canadian novel on this list, and now after finishing Dream Sequence I'm baffled as to how this one made it through but not the other?)

Yesterday, while reading Dream Sequence, I went to the Giller site to see how they explained what the Prize stood for, because I was questioning its inclusion on this year's longlist. Does the Giller site say its the celebration of Canadian literature? Or is
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Sara
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I gave this book 2 stars instead of 1 star because I actually finished it. This is the story of two unlikable people who meet each other, one famous, the other not. He is a self-centered actor with a huge ego and she is just plain nuts. I kept reading to see if something would actually happen that was interesting. No. Never did. At the end, I didn't really care what happened with their relationship. Glad I was able to breeze through it.
Kath
Feb 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book delivers a glimpse into two lives that are worlds apart but which come together with, let's just say, an interesting conclusion.
Henry is an actor. When we first meet him he is desperate to land the lead what is billed as the next blockbuster film, having recently finished in a major tv drama. We are also introduced to Kristin who is a bit obsessed with Henry. Writing to him constantly and following him avidly on the internet and social media. She deludes herself that they are destined
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Shan
Sep 23, 2019 rated it liked it
Read because it was longlisted for the Giller Prize.

Every year I read the Giller longlist and every year there is one book on there that gives me a huge surprise, a book I never would have read had it not been for the list and that I absolutely loved and recommend to everyone. As I began this book I thought, this is that book for 2019. Now that I've finished it I'm not so sure. I got stuck in right away and actually ended up reading this book in just two sittings. It's easy to become absorbed in
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Alan
Feb 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
‘Henry. Henry was everywhere and nowhere, shaping everything. He was the key signature in which the music of her life was played.’

Adam Foulds’ new novel is a short (coming in at a little over 200 pages) meditation on the nature of celebrity-obsession. Henry Banks is an actor on the way up: having spent years in a successful TV period drama The Grange (I think we all know what this is an allusion to!), given the lead in a new movie by famed director Miguel Garcia, star of a west End run of Hamlet
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Anne Logan
Jun 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Dream Sequence by Adam Foulds is a little gem of a novel. Short, beautifully written, engaging characters and an exciting ending; what else could a reader ask for? There are two main characters; Kristin is an attractive young woman who’s just gotten a divorce from a wealthy man, previously her boss (insert eyebrow raise here), and Henry Banks is a famous UK actor, desperate to break into film as his current resume includes successfully television appearances only. Within the first few pages we ...more
John Owen
Aug 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read some of the reviewers of this book are disappointed that not much happens. It looks like the book as a story about a stalker. I just grabbed it off the shelf at my library without knowing anything about it.

I enjoy well-written stories about people and how they go about their lives and this book does a great job of telling us about a rising actor and the things he does to get through the day and to rise in his profession. He's really a fairly normal guy with parents who are a bit annoying
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Melanie Garrett
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Exquisite, limpid prose and exceptional characterizations made this an engrossing and thoroughly enjoyable read. I loathe spoilers so don't want to discuss the plot itself, other than to say it's a celebrity-stalking gone wrong (although has there ever been one that's gone well?). As the lovestruck delusion plays out to its fatal conclusion we are given privileged back-of-the-eyes access to both the stalker and her unsuspecting beloved. Phrase by perfect phrase, sentence by limpid sentence Mr ...more
Marisa Turpin
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jenny
Apr 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Received from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Foulds is a great writer. This is not my favorite work of his, but it certainly captured my interest and I read it in one sitting. His prose has sharpened a bit and he deftly switches viewpoints.
peg
Jul 17, 2019 rated it liked it
A couple of shallow main characters...an egotistical actor and his stalker from Hell. Didn’t seem to add much new to an old story!
Jeff
Jun 25, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Turgid. Starts okay before becoming a straight man's soap opera.

N.B.: If your character is bored at a party, your readers definitely don't want pages of detail.

And a woman from Kentucky who says "air stewardess" and "I have done"? C'mon, get an American to proofread your dialogue!
Brittany
Sep 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Actual Rating: 3.5/5

My first read from the Scotiabank Giller Prize Longlist for 2019 and it was an okay start.

This was a quick and interesting read that did a really good job of fleshing out two extremely flawed characters in under two hundred pages and leaves you with the a lasting impression with the ending. I can't say much though because it can be easily spoiled.

This was a good middle of the road read, I don't think it will make the shortlist but I am glad I took the opportunity to read it,
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Dale
I found the book was an attempt at psychological insight, which I found unconvincing and has been much better done by Patricia Highsmith or Ruth Rendell
Steven Buechler
Aug 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those reads that should be read in print and savoured in quiet moments where reflection is possible. Foulds explores two lives in this book which are in transition. One life is Kristen, a confused and emotional individual who finds herself alone and wanting more. She adores Henry, ( whom is the other life explored in the book) a popular television actor who is about to make his film debut, and obsesses about him. In the sections that deal with Henry, readers learn about his fears, ...more
Audrey
This review is based on an ARC of Dream Sequence which I received courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux).

So... That was it? Okay, so, the writing was gorgeous and I was interested in the buildup, but that felt like a whole lotta pointless reading now that it's over.

Dream Sequence is split between two POVs: Henry, an up and coming actor who is frankly pretty narcissistic and pessimistic, and Kristin, a recent divorcée who is lost in her life and a bit obsessed with
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Marie (UK)
I feel I am being generous giving this book a 2 star rating. The whole is a great big empty plot line with a couple of narcissistic characters. I think it could have been so much more but instead of developing the plot line around Kirstin and Henry there is just one more mention of her before she boards a plane to London. It feels like the author got dragged down in describing Henry, his lifestyle and his ego mania and forgot to develop the narrative completely. As a reader I want a book to ...more
Erin
May 25, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found the description of this book was deceiving. I was expecting much more of the story to be about Kristin and her interactions with Henry. She is introduced in the very beginning and then not mentioned for more than half the book. I found Henry’s story entertaining to read but I spent much of that time wondering how Kristin ties into this story. When she finally is brought back in I didn’t feel as if the reader was given a true sense of her thought process and I failed to understand her ...more
Lauren Archer
May 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Thank you for an Advanced Reader’s Copy of this book. This short book was not what I expected based on the blurb that was written. This centers around two characters, Kristin, a divorcee from Philly and Henry an actor on a hit TV show. This book centers around obsession, Kristin with Henry, and Henry with himself. They billed this as satirical, but it definitely did not feel that way. It ended up being a sad little book in my opinion. This book will definitely be one that is talked about, as I ...more
Rach
Oct 04, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, reviewed
’Maybe I can make you happy. Maybe I can’t.’
‘You certainly can. The question is will you.’
‘That’s true. The question is will I.’


Didn’t hate it, but didn’t love it either!

It was definitely an interesting look into the theme of obsession and a great insight into Henry and Kristin as characters. You come to understand them both deeply, intimately through their choices and reasonings which makes this very good for if someone wanted to do a character study!

I really enjoyed seeing the perspective of
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Adam Foulds (born 1974) is a British novelist and poet.

He was educated at Bancroft's School, read English at St Catherine's College, Oxford under Craig Raine, and graduated with an MA in creative writing from the University of East Anglia in 2001. Foulds published The Truth About These Strange Times, a novel, in 2007. This won a Betty Trask Award. The novel, which is set in the present day, is
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