Thursday, 2 January 2014
Review: The Queen of Dreams by Peter Hamilton
Format: Hardcover / eBook
Released: January 2nd, 2014
Taggie and Jemima are summer holidaying on their dad's farm, when they see a white squirrel wearing glasses... and soon after their father is captured and trapped in a faerie world that's fallen to Darkness. But why would anybody want to kidnap boring old Dad, especially the dreaded King of Night? Could it be that their family isn't quite as ordinary as they believed?
The Queen of Dreams is a fun book for fans of The Chronicles of Narnia. It really reminded me of C.S. Lewis's magical masterpiece of a series, right down to the fiesty young characters, wintery realms and lanterns. If I'm honest, I thought I'd enjoy it a lot more than I actually did, though the fantastic illustrations made up for my unexplainable lack of enthusiasm as I got halfway through the book. Usually I love children's fantasy stories like this, so maybe I just wasn't in the mood for it!
Reading this book immediately made me want a spectacle-wearing talking squirrel and an army of fanged garden gnomes. I liked all the faerie creatures that the author chose to include, especially the faeries. The realms themselves also sounded magical; beautiful and unrivalled by anything the characters have ever seen. There was that sense of awe while I was reading it, so I can only imagine what it would be like to actually visit these places and meet people like this!
Taggie and Jemima are both good, strong characters, with a sense of importance and a strangely easy acceptance of who they are and what they're about to see. I thought they would have taken a bit longer to be totally okay with finding out they belong in a faerie world, but it was all very fast and a bit unbelievable. I know it's a children's book, but would kids really believe something like that so fast?! Maybe they would...
I enjoyed this book and will read any future sequels, though I can't help but be disappointed. It didn't grab me like I hoped it would, and I struggled to remember all the various people and place names scattered throughout the book. I may re-read it and see if I feel any differently a second time, as usually I fly through books like this. I have no doubt that younger readers will love this one, because who doesn't love a talking squirrel?!