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The Hambledown Dream

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4.27  ·  Rating details ·  84 ratings  ·  45 reviews
Australian Denny Banister had it all; a successful career, a passion for the guitar, and Sonya - the love of his life. Tragically, Denny is struck down with inoperable cancer. Andy DeVries has almost nothing; alienated from his family, moving through a dangerous Chicago underworld dealing in drugs, battling addiction while keeping a wavering hold on the only thing that mat ...more
Paperback, 284 pages
Published April 1st 2010 by Central Avenue Publishing (first published January 20th 2010)
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Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.27  · 
Rating details
 ·  84 ratings  ·  45 reviews


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Lisette Brodey
Mar 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paranormal-love
I love it when I begin a novel and instantly connect to the characters and story. I love the feeling I get when I know I'm going to be immersed in a story that will touch me and take me away. After reading only a few pages of The Hambledown Dream, I knew I was in for a treat.

I don't want to write the kind of review that is merely a long synopsis of the plot. Rather, I'll just say how much I enjoyed this paranormal love story that connected the lives of two men: Andy DeVries from Chicago and Den
...more
Norma Budden
Mar 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
The opening relationship between Sonia and Denny seemed too picture perfect but, at the same time, it goes to show just how much Sonia lost when Denny succumbed to the cancer which took him away from her - or so she thought.

The Hambledown Dream was unlike any other book I've read, taking me into polar opposite sets of circumstances, in terms of the two major male characters and the lifestyles they led - up to the point where they began merging into one.

The characters were real - people we would
...more
Molly Ringle
Nov 13, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
From darkness to light, utter ruin to the highest joy, worthlessness to triumph--Dean Mayes' novel takes us through the biggest transformations a protagonist can undergo, and displays sheer beauty throughout. It's the kind of story that had me almost jumping up and down in excitement by the end, eager to cheer the characters on to their certain reunion.

Plotwise, it's a bit like, say, the film "Sleepless in Seattle," where the main question isn't "Will they get together?" so much as "Will they e
...more
Carolina
Nov 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didn't doubt for a second that I would like The Hambledown Dream. I'm always a sucker for a good love story. But Mayes gives you more than just a sweet fluffy romance. The Hambledown Dream features beautiful writing, a bit of magic, a touch of music, compelling characters, and the passion of two souls reaching for one another across the burden of distance and impossibility. I was both absorbed by the novel, by its lyrical prose that reads like a song, and moved by the storyline of a man whose ...more
Scott-robert Shenkman
Nov 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
All I can say about this book is that it is perfect. One of my favorites ever. Read it and you will be glad you did.
Lily Malone
Oct 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the second book of Dean Mayes' that I've read, the first being The Recipient - dealing with organ donation. The Recipient is one of my favourite reads of 2017.
First with the obvious - Hambeldown Dream has similarities with Recipient, in that 'life after death' or I guess, the ability for souls to inter-change at the point of death, with an awareness of the 'dead person' coming through to the 'living'... this is obviously something that intrigues the author, given those of his stories tha
...more
Yvonne (Fiction Books)
May 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites
"This Is How To Be A Male Author, Writing In The Romance Market"

Before I set down my thoughts about this fantastic book, let me just say that I love the way that Dean introduces the idea of a story and it's characters to an audience, through the medium of his blog.

He basically seems to set down his thoughts and ideas, in a short story form of installments, building on it weekly, until the novel has taken shape. The comments and words of encouragement he receives almost appear to help mould the f
...more
 Lady Krishna
May 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Also posted at Journey With Books

The Hambledown Dream
By Dean Mayes

Dean Mayes created a masterpiece! Some may agree and some may disagree but for me, ‘The Hambledown Dream’ is one of the best fictions I’ve ever read!

It’s not your typical Romance novel, I don’t even know which category I could put it. ‘The Hambledown Dream’ has a bit of everything thrown in it. It has mystery, romance, a little paranormal and a lot of emotional drama. It’s a story of second chances and destiny.

Andy is a very gifte
...more
Abbie Williams
Mar 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a book written by an author who is keenly observant and sensitive to the human condition. There were so many passages that gave me pause, in that I was so impressed by what direction the situations led my thoughts. The Hambledown Dream is, at its heart, a love story that is both unique and hugely thought-provoking. A central question drives the novel - what would you be willing to do to get back to the one you loved, the love of your life?

As I read I found myself wishing that there was
...more
Georgina Penney
Feb 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A perfect way to procrastinate away an afternoon. I really liked that I knew nothing about this book before I started reading it. I'd pretty much seen Dean around Facebook, decided he was an interesting guy and wanted to read a bit of his stuff.

Well, I wasn't disappointed. I've been crazy-busy lately and haven't had enough time to read but when I picked up The Hambledown Dream I couldn't put it down.

The whole thing was unique and familiar at the same time. I'm not quite sure how he does it but
...more
Ashleigh Oldfield
What can I say about this story? Any story that has me crying in the first few pages is destined to be good. To have me genuinely caring about the character from page one is a true show of skill from author Dean Mayes, and each and every character in the story was equally well developed. The story really got me thinking - what if you were a screwball all of your life, and were suddenly given a second chance to turn your life around? This story made me conscious of the importance of making the mo ...more
Book
Oct 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Hambledown Dream is written with a lyricism and style that draws the reader in and gives them something to sink their teeth into.

The author takes the reader on a journey with Andy DeVries, a self deprecating individual caught up in the throes of the drug underworld. One overdose leads to the resuscitation that will forever change his life as Denny Banistar, his complete opposite and a victim of cancer, joins his body in a form of reincarnation

Dean Mayes transports the reader and takes them
...more
Gem (Glimpsing Gembles Blog)
Jan 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2015
The Hambledown Dream, written by Dean Mayes, is a rare treat for the reader. It combines elements of dark drama and suspense, personal growth, other worldly concepts, and true and long lasting romance. A thoroughly enjoyable and well laid out plot transports the reader to two different countries, and involves them deeply with the lives of strangers who are intertwined under strange circumstances. This situation causes the reader to contemplate the possibility of souls carrying on after death. Th ...more
L.M. DeWalt
Dec 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am not good at writing reviews so I won't even try. I just wanted to say that I loved this book! I don't have much time to read these days but I managed to read this in 3 days so I read every spare moment that I could. Now I'm rushing to finish an 8 page paper for school because of it but it was well worth it. Dean's characters made me laugh and cry, sometimes all at the same time. I could relate so much with the main character's life before it was changed (and mine was changed) that it was al ...more
J.A. Beard
Aug 07, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Good Book Alert Review (http://www.goodbookalert.blogspot.com/)

The Hambledown Dream
Author: Dean Mayes
Genre: Mainstream with a paranormal elements
Rating: 3.5 Stars

The Hambledown Dream is a meditation upon love, loss, and the true meaning of life.

Summary:

When Australian Denny Banister is tragically cut down in the prime of his life by cancer, he leaves behind a void in the life of his friends and wife.

Across the world in America, Andy DeVries brushes up against death after an overdose. Despite b
...more
Sharon Tyler
Aug 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Hambledown Dream by Dean Mayes is a book that defies my genre categories. It is not quite romance, or coming of age, spiritual, or paranormal but somehow holds elements of all four. Denny Banister had everything, until cancer tore him down and took him away from his two passions, Sonya and the guitar. Andy DeVries lives across the world, and has a life very different from Denny. He deals drugs, works at a pub, and stumbles through life. The only thing Denny and Andy share is a love of guitar ...more
Alexis DeSousa
Mar 30, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Hambledown Dream is a contemporary fiction novel with a supernatural twist. The novel centers around drug addict and mule, Andrew DeVries. At the start of the novel, his life is a complete mess. He overdoses and dies on the table, only to be brought back to his drug addled life. When he is brought back, something happens to him that changes his life for the better.

The novel starts out with a character other than Andy. We see the death of a man we do not know. At first, I wasn’t sure why we w
...more
Sheila
Sep 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
An intriguing romance with hints of reincarnation and redemption, Dean Mayes The Hambledown Dream is a thoroughly enjoyable read filled with powerful emotions and the joy of lives turned around. While a much-loved husband and guitar-player lies dying in Australia, a drug-addicted American is rushed into an American hospital. Andy’s life seems hardly worth saving, but somehow he pulls through, and the brush with death leaves intriguing hints of hope as he faces the challenges of his hopeless life ...more
Sheri
May 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Hambledown Drean By Dean Mayes


A young Austrailian man, Denny Banister has a perfect life, the woman of his dreams a great career and a passion for the guitar. He finds he has terminal caner, as he struggles to fight for his life he fails to succeed and cancer takes his life. Left behind in a state of grief is his true love Sonya Llewellen.

American Andy DeVries has not much in life. Living in Chicago and fighting a drug addiction he has a near death experience that alters the course of his li
...more
Wendy Hines
Jan 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Death, rebirth and love set the tone for this compelling novel by Dean Mayes. The gasping moment that Andy dies on the table from a drug overdose will make you pause, but when he is revived and different, you will question. How does Andy's life join the life of a man he has never met, Denn?. Denny, who had it all and died from cancer, who only has his love of the guitar in common with Andy. But Andy begins to gain Denny's memories and with them, the love of Sonya. Will they meet? Can Andy turn h ...more
Kate (VerbVixen)
I found the Hambledown Dream to be a sweet and moving story. When you pick up this book be aware that you’re in for an emotional rollercoaster ride. The plot moves from sad to dark and troubled only to end in hope. While it does have a very happy ever after ending, I will let it slide, mainly because I think Andy deserves a happy ending. Once you invest in him as a character, it’s hard to not want that happiness for him. There is a great focus on classical guitar and the guitar descriptions are ...more
Sabrina
Sep 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is one of the best I've read in a long time.

It was one sitting book! I rarely care for romance books by men, but this story is sweet, poignant and very well written. The way he brings Andy and Denny together is very well done. I was afraid that one personality would become lost in the other but Dean manages to keep the best of both.

The author creates such wonderful word pictures that you feel like you are living it too.
My favorite part is the music, I've never had the emotions of musi
...more
Laura
Nov 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I won this book on a goodreads giveaway!

I loved the premise of this story and it kept my interest from beginning to end. I honestly could not put the book down.
The story takes us thru the death of a young man and the rebirth of another. A little bit of real life mixed with fantasy and paranormal. Makes a person wonder what can really happen after death?

The only negative comments I can make have to do with the setting that takes place in Chicago. I am from Chicago and I found some inaccuracies
...more
Stuart
Aug 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Author Dean Mayes has created an impressive debut novel, ‘The ‘Hambledown Dream’. From the onset, I was instantly drawn to the tragic, untimely death of, Denny Banister a young man who had everything to live for, his true love Sonya, a promising career, and his gift as an accomplished guitarist.

We then meet, Andy DeVries whose life on the other side of the world is fraught with danger, drugs, and a gloomy future. Mayes creates a wonderfully written tale which had me believing in the likeable ch
...more
Christi
I enjoyed this book, but wasn't crazy about the end. I think I liked it up to the Epilogue. Denny passes away from cancer way too young. His spirit does not want to leave and ends up coming to rest in Andy's body. Andy has just flat lined in the hospital ER room from a drug overdose. With Denny's spirit's help, Andy turns his life around. I thought the book was interesting with Denny's spirit peaking through occasionally. What I didn't like was how it was wrapped up. It ends with both spirits ac ...more
Lisa
Jun 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a fantastic read! I thoroughly enjoyed reading Dean Mayes' The Hambledown Dream. From the start, chapter one grabbed a hold of my emotions and forced them to hold on tight for a gripping ride right through until the very end. From Denny's tragic end to Andy's new beginning and all the believable characters in between, you will not be disappointed with this story. It has love, passion, dirt and grit ... the beauty of Australian beaches and the grime of the Chicago underground ... the deathly ...more
ParaYourNormal
Sep 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Review by: Jennifer Bacile

An original, engaging plot unfolds after a climatic beginning to this debut novel from Dean Mayes...A solid, worthwhile read.

5 of 5 Fangs

Read the entire review at ParaYourNormal
Gina's Library
Aug 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
Over all I think this was a good book. There are parts that I think are so far fetched. The story didn't really suck me totally in from the start though. It was to me very slow going in the beginning. It got better as the book went on. I think for his first novel however he did a great job.
Selina Simmons
Jan 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic book. Looking forward to the next book Dean is working on.
Sherrie Petersen
Good but not gripping.
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When he emerged in 2010, Adelaide based Intensive Care Nurse and author Dean Mayes, had almost given up on the prospect of ever being published. by then in his 30's with several abortive writing attempts under his belt, Dean believed he had missed his opportunity. But Dean had an idea for one last story he wanted to tell and, rather than allow it to wither and die in his imagination, he decided to ...more