Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews



Elizabeth Knox
Fiction  Series
For ages 12 and up
Square Fish, 2009   ISBN: 0312535716

Laura Hame and her cousin Rose Tiebold are about to face perhaps the most important milestone in their lives. They are going to participate in a "Try" to see if they are suitable to become dreamhunters. Laura's father, Tziga Hame, and Rose's mother, Grace Tiebold, are both very skilled in the art and their dreams are relished by audiences who come to experience the dreams in dream salons, palaces, and in the Rainbow Opera. Ever confident Rose is eager for the Try to take place because she is very certain that she will become a great dreamhunter, just like her mother, but dreamy Laura is not so sure. If her Try is a success, her life will change forever, but if it does not work out she cannot help wondering if her father will be disappointed in her. 

It is therefore rather a shock to everyone when Rose does not do well in her Try. She just does not have what it takes. When Laura steps into the Place – the mystical area where the dreamhunters catch their dreams, she has a decidedly disturbing experience. It is clear to everyone that Laura has inherited her father's very considerable gift. Laura's father Tziga was the first dreamhunter and is famous for the dreams that he catches.

Soon Laura begins her life as a dreamhunter. Unfortunately, everything is in a state of confusion and uncertainty because Laura's famous father has gone missing. Secretly Laura is determined to find out what happened to her father and she begins her search by going into the Place. What she discovers horrifies her and she decides that something needs to be done to correct the mistakes of the past.

Readers who enjoy science fiction and fantasy titles are sure to be intrigued by this unique story. The characters are beautifully constructed so that they have flaws, gifts, talents, and incongruities – just like real people. As the story unfolds and develops a very sinister undertone to dreamhunting begins to come to light. It would appear that the government is using dreams for their own purposes – some of which are quite appalling.

Readers will surely be eager to get their hands on the next book in this duet – Dreamquake – to find out how Laura and Rose progress in their quest for the truth.