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Dreaming of Amelia

(Ashbury/Brookfield #4)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  2,899 ratings  ·  315 reviews
Dreaming of Amelia is the story of Amelia and Riley. They're bad kids from the bad crowd at bad Brookfield High, and they've just transferred to Ashbury.

Brilliant, mysterious and probably evil, they have the rich kids at Ashbury spellbound.

But just who are Amelia and Riley?

Tantalisingly aloof, they are somehow managing to have an extraordinary impact on all the HSC
Paperback, 520 pages
Published November 2009 by Pan Macmillan (first published January 3rd 2009)
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Agnė It can be read as a stand-alone. I haven't read the first 3 books myself (though I think I will) but just finished reading this one and really liked…moreIt can be read as a stand-alone. I haven't read the first 3 books myself (though I think I will) but just finished reading this one and really liked it! From what I've heard, the previous books follow the same characters during their earlier years in high school, but you don't really need to know those stories to enjoy this one :)(less)
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Average rating 3.85  · 
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Every time I've read Jaclyn Moriarty's books, I think: Oooh, this book is just so delicious that I can't imagine she's ever going to think up such awesomely wonderful sentences again. But I keep getting proven wrong. Dreaming of Amelia took me longer to read because I kept pausing to re-read sentences, they just feel so good in my brain :) However, I am determined to maintain my fan-girl tendencies and try to bring you a dignified review. Some info about the book:

The story's told in a series of
Original Review HERE

It was a dark and stormy night (when I started reading The Ghosts of Ashbury High). The rain fell torrentially and the trees outside rattled against my window occasionally. The house was silent and I was all alone. The lights in the street were out and I was reading by candlelight (ok, not really, but just go with the flow). Reader! Hear the truth of my words! I had a strong sense of foreboding and a feeling of impending DOOM right after the first few pages and I felt I could
Jan 20, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Jaclyn Moriarty
Shelves: ya, 2010, aus-nz
I have a strange relationship with Jaclyn Moriarty. I like her books, but I think they are full of a special (maybe Australian?) weirdness. The Ghosts of Ashbury High is no exception.

This book is the 4th about Ashbury High (the other 3 are in chronological order: Feeling Sorry for Celia: A Novel, The Year Of Secret Assignments and The Murder Of Bindy Mackenzie), but it's not a series, each book can be read independently, even though the cast of characters is pretty much the same.

At the center of
Another winner from Moriarty!

Seriously, I love the Ashbury series. It has these quirky but not too quirky characters and just the right mix of humour, family issues, friendship, romance and suspense. While I would say that I liked Feeling Sorry For Celia and Finding Cassie Crazy a tiny bit better, Dreaming of Amelia brought back some of my favourite characters (Lydia and Seb!), but also introduced new ones I grew to love.

It is a big book (over 500 pages) and slightly different in style from
All three books by Jaclyn Moriarty that I have read until now were a good mixture of a lot of fun and humor (often kindled by the changing perspectives), good, good writing (Mrs. Moriarty really makes me believe different persons must have composed the different points of view instead of just her), close observation and some tragedy. In Amelia the tragedy ingredient came in larger portions into the mix. I would label the book as "sad but not hopeless". Also a lot of mystery was stirred in, ...more
May 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the book I will hand to people who think that YA can't be complex.
YA Reads Book Reviews
Sep 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: morgan
Before you begin reading The Ghosts of Ashbury High, put all those expectations you may have about how a book is written on a shelf somewhere. You can pick them up later when youre back to reading regular books.

Good. Now that thats done, I can tell you about Jaclyn Moriarty and the Ashbury High books (Feeling Sorry for Celia, The Year of Secret Assignments, The Murder of Bindy Mackenzie). These four books arent sequels, but they do revolve around the same high school and involve characters who
This was a very distressing time for me.

(view spoiler)
It didnt seem so at first, but this was a worthwhile read. (Of course it was going to be, Jaclyn Moriarty is one of my to-buy authors. I wasnt too worried.)

The beginning was a bit disheartening. I didnt feel drawn into the story until after the 100 page mark. The series once again takes a new route, this time one with ghosts. Its the final year for the Ashbury students and their HSC English exams and assignments on gothic fiction make up almost the entirety of the book. Emilys back with a
Dec 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I wanted this book so badly that I made my boyfriend order it for me from Australia.

Screw you, United States! I ain't waitin' six more months!

Anyway, so the edition I read was called "Dreaming of Amelia" (although you can bet your sweet bippy I'll be getting this "Ghost of Ashbury High" edition as soon as it comes out), so let's take it from there.

Altogether, I didn't like it as much as my beloved Murder of Bindy Mackenzie. But, I mean, come on. That's impossible to do. And I still devoured this
Dec 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who like high school drama
Recommended to Agnė by: Self Respect Teen Lit Book Group

Although Jaclyn Moriartys young adult novel The Ghosts of Ashbury High is the fourth installment in the Ashbury/Brookfield series, it also works great as a stand-alone. In the final year of high school, Amelia and Riley, a mysterious couple, transfer to Ashbury High and soon become an obsession of their curious classmates: Who are they? Where are they from? What do they want? But Amelia and Riley is not the only mystery at Ashbury High this year. Emily, a girl from the popular
Mar 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: teen
I admit, I really though Jaclyn Moriarty had lost her stride with this one. The entire "ghost" plotline just didn't appeal to me and I didn't think it was a good device for telling the story of the final year at Ashbury. Thankfully, the last fourth of the book completely made up for any misgivings I may have had and we were able to say good-bye to the students of Ashbury justly. I wish there was a secret fifth book detailing everyone's first year at university and through a wild twist of fate ...more
Nov 14, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved Jaclyn Moriarty's previous novels, and Dreaming of Amelia is no exception. I loved the format - told through memoirs written as part of the gothic fiction elective in the HSC English exam from multiple viewpoints of Year Twelve students at Ashbury High. I love that it's a companion novel to a few of Moriarty's previous titles including Finding Cassie Crazy - I love revisiting all the same characters.

Dreaming of Amelia is just the right balance of spooky and hilariously funny.
Jan 26, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
Oh man, Moriarty has done it again.

I love mysteries, and her books always keep my guessing until the very end. I figured out the biggest one in the book a page before it was revealed, which is perfect as it shows how Moriarty created and maintained suspense throughout the novel, while still giving her readers clues.

Every question that came up (and there were many) was resolved by the end of the novel, and though of some of the answers really surprised me, they were all believable. I love a good
Jul 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, 2010, aussie-lit, own
Riley and Amelia have been a couple since they were fourteen years old. They are mysterious and beautiful and immediately cause a stir upon their arrival as Year 12 scholarship students at the exclusive private school in Castle Hill, Australia, Ashbury High. No one seems to know anything about these two, but everyone is noticing them and wants to be noticed by them. Even best friends Emily, Lydia, and Cassie. Emily, resident Drama Queen, quickly becomes obsessed with all things Riley and Amelia ...more
Daniela (Lightweaver)
Wowwwwwwww excuse me while i gather up all the pieces of my heart and sob like a baby.
I cant give this anything less than 5 stars. It has everything you could ever want from a book.
This book makes me feel like one of those kids who can manage to say something extremely awkward and make it unawkward. At least, that's what the dramatics make me feel like. And Jaclyn's characters are just so franks and insouciant and carefree. I believe the word I'm looking for is refreshing. i I I especially love Em. Em, you are ja shining beacon of life amidst seriousness of humanity! Did you hear that?

"You know the Joint Ashbury-Brookfield Art Exhibition?
. . .
It happened at the end of
Words cannot express how much I love Jaclyn Moriartys books. Theyre fresh, witty, sarcastic, creative, and utterly unique- written in a multitude of forms, from letters to emails to post-its and bulletin board notices. The Ghosts of Ashbury High is written mostly in the form of projects on gothic fiction written by various students at Ashbury, including some very familiar faces.

I was a little surprised to find that the two mysterious transfer students themselves werent as prominently featured as
Kara Cardwell
Aug 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Okay, I admit it. That at the beginning of the book when nothing seemed to be connecting, I was concerned that I wouldn't like this 480 pg book. When I love a book, I welcome 400 and 500 pages, but since it started slow for me, I started to dread the pages of Ashbury High.

I'm so glad I stuck to it! If I hadn't, I wouldn't have been able to tell you how wonderful this story was. I've never read anything like it. It was so creative, I'm even subconsciously (partly) writing this review the way
Cialina (Muggle-Born)
I'm a huge fan of Jaclyn Moriarty's The Year of Secret Assignments, so I was very excited to have snagged a copy of The Ghosts of Ashbury High at internship. I was surprised on how big the book was, but I was determined to read it anyways. Length usually does not faze me.

I was definitely not used to Moriarty's style of writing. It's been a while since I read The Year of Secret Assignments, so I was not prepared for it. Around 200 pages in, I confess that I skipped to the end at around page 400
Good Golly Miss Holly
DREAMING OF AMELIA - is set in the world of Ashbury High where our beloved Lyd, Cass & Em are facing their final year of high school. The girls want to make this their best year yet but things are thrown into discourse after their rival school, Brookfield High is asked to share the stage in their final school play.

The students are also utterly captivated by an inseparable pair of scholarship students, Amelia & Riley who seem to do everything in their power to appear mysterious and
Feb 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another swell one from Jaclyn Moriarty. One of the things I liked most about this last book in the Ashbury High series (I think it's the last, which makes me sad), is that we got a sense of the teachers through their own letters/notes/documents, and not just through the eyes of the students. I always liked Mr. Botherit, but it was mostly because his name made me laugh. Now I can add him to the list of characters that I love from this series.

Amongst all the silliness and windingly crazy plotlines
Jun 22, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I cannot praise this book enough. Jaclyn Moriarty has once again proven herself to be clever, AMAZING, awesome, a wonderful writer, and extremely creative. I mean, COME ON, who else could write a book like this and pull it off too?

Because it was pulled off brilliantly. I mean, at first, I was getting sort of bored (mainly of Tom Kincaid) and the randomness of it all. Plus, I kept on wondering how someone could write so much on their HSC Exam. Seriously.

But once I got over that, and the book got
Nov 06, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jaclyn Moriarty has, yet again, dazzled me by her unbelievable skill at storytelling.
The plot of this book was ingenious. How all of the little pieces fall together in the end. When you open this book you get a story with dozens of little stories inside. I applaud Jaclyn Moriarty, because she is a wonderful, wonderful writer. And I loved...loved...loved this book.
Oct 02, 2017 rated it liked it
Honestly, I really need to read this series again. I had so much fun with it! I remember this one being not quite up to scratch, but still enjoyable. Jaclyn Moriarty just created such wonderful characters throughout this series, I could have gone on reading them for years.
Feb 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is The Book That Has Everything.

As an epistolary novel from an author who loves to lull you into amusement before shocking the crap out of you, this book features a convoluted, sometimes overlapping/sometimes contradictory/sometimes confusing/sometimes enigmatic/sometimes curiously misdirected narrative compiled in the various communications of many characters. Much of the story is told in assignments given to the students--tell the story of your term in a ghost story! tell the story of
Mar 05, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think Jaclyn Moriarty must have a very strange mind, because how else could she make a story work so well but still be full of mystery and friendships and letters? Anyways, a good book with an uncommon structure.
This book is weird. Its complicated. Its confusing. Its all over the place. It doesnt really follow on from any of the previous books. But thats not the important part. The important part is that it is totally surprising.
See, I read a lot of books. I like reading a lot of books, and Im glad I read a lot of books. But books have plots, and plots need to follow a structure and when you read a lot within the same genres within the same age rangewell, you start to notice patterns. You start to
Rachel Brand
Feb 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, own, 2010
I've been an avid fan of Jaclyn Moriarty since I read her first novel, Feeling Sorry for Celia, when I was thirteen. I've always liked the epistolary style of writing and Moriarty is one of the few authors who can pull this off successfully, in my opinion. "Dreaming of Amelia" is a particularly unique version of this style of story-telling in that the majority of it is written in the form of an English exam. Although this is intersperced with emails, blog posts and letters, for the most part of ...more
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Madison Mega-Mara...: The Ghosts of Ashbury High 1 4 Aug 25, 2012 09:43PM  

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Jaclyn Moriarty is an Australian writer of young adult literature.

She studied English at the University of Sydney, and law at Yale University and Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, where she was awarded a PhD.

She is the younger sister of Liane Moriarty. She was previously married to Canadian writer Colin McAdam, and has a son, Charlie. She currently lives in Sydney.

Other books in the series

Ashbury/Brookfield (4 books)
  • Feeling Sorry for Celia (Ashbury/Brookfield, #1)
  • The Year of Secret Assignments (Ashbury/Brookfield, #2)
  • The Murder of Bindy Mackenzie (Ashbury/Brookfield, #3)

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