Today I am reviewing a Young Adult book by D. Robert Pease, titled Dream Warriors. Let’s first get to know the author!.
D. Robert Pease has been interested in creating worlds since childhood. From building in the sandbox behind his house, to drawing fantastical worlds with paper and pencil, there has hardly been a time he hasn’t been off on some adventure in his mind, to the dismay of parents and teachers alike. Also, since the moment he could read, books have consumed vast swaths of his life. From The Mouse and the Motorcycle, to The Lord of the Rings, worlds just beyond reality have called to him like Homer’s Sirens. It’s not surprising then he chose to write stories of his own. Each filled with worlds just beyond reach, but close enough we can all catch a glimpse of ourselves in the characters he creates.
D. Robert lives in the gray-skied world of Northeast Ohio with his wife, two kids (a boy and a girl) and two pets (a dog and a cat) and a pond full of goldfish. When not writing he loves to travel the U.S. via RV with his trusty Jeep in tow, or ride the hills of Ohio on his bike..
Joseph Colafranceschi is a fifteen-year-old, self-described geek, living in the Bronx. The second youngest of twelve sons of the former U.S. ambassador to Italy, Joey discovers that a small Egyptian statuette, given to him by his father, endows him with power to control his dreams.
After his brothers throw him down a manhole, Joey is drawn into a hidden society of warriors who have been battling a reincarnated Egyptian Pharaoh for over 3,000 years. In the dream world, everyone is not what they appear to be, and it’s impossible to tell who to trust. As Joey slips deeper into a world of gladiator battles and clandestine missions within other people’s dreams, he catches the eye of a beautiful Egyptian princess.
The only thing that keeps him grounded in reality is his best friend Alex, but even she may not be who he thought she was.
The book cover is very nice, something that inspires fantasy. It shows the characters Cleopatra, Joseph Colafranceschi (aka Joey Cola) and Alexandra Romanov (aka Alex). Joey stumbles onto a parallel world once he comes into possession of a magical amulet, passed onto him from his father. I felt so intrigued by this amulet that I couldn’t put the book down until I found out what magical powers it held!.
I liked Alex’s character a lot. I can very much relate to her. She is very kind hearted and amiable. Her dress sense is unique and the author describes it well in many instances. Joey has a huge family. He has several brothers and a sister. Extreme sibling rivalry is shown in this book. I did grow up fighting with my brother, whom I love to bits right now, now that we see each other only about twice a month!. I know there is always some sort of rivalry between siblings. However, in this book, it’s extreme to the point that Joey’s step brothers don’t even worry about any consequences that might occur, like for e.g. Joey’s death!. Not that he dies in the book, but two of his step brothers do leave him to be dead at one point of time. The world building is really nice. The author has very imaginatively presented a fictional world called To-She.
The character development is nicely done. I feel Joey, who is 15, really shows maturity beyond his age once he discovers the world of To-She. There is a lot of sexual tension between him and Cleopatra and for some reason, I felt it to be inappropriate. After all, he is just 15. Well, kids these days might develop and mature way ahead of time. However, for me it felt really weird. If Joey was say 20 or 21, it would have been more appropriate.
The battle scenes in To-She are described really well and I quite enjoyed it. The character called Ammon, who is an old man is very intriguing and all knowing. The concept that there are many who are normal people in real life but their avatars in To-She can take on disguises and have powers, is a unique one. No one really knows who a particular avatar in To-She is, in real life. They could be anyone, situated anywhere in the world but all they have to do to enter To-She is to fall asleep. Then they train and fight battles in To-She, thus becoming dream warriors!. That’s how the title came about.
Though I like the story line, there are certain situations that are unbelievable. For instance, there is a scene (not a spoiler!), where the President of US meets Joey, to discuss a dream!!. Well, that was a bit too much. The scene however was nicely depicted, whereby Joey was whisked away by secret agents and all that.
The ending was nice in such a way that it didn’t leave a lot to imagination. It felt like a proper ending and not a cliffhanger that drives you crazy with anticipation until the next part of the book gets released. However, there are still some things left out so that you would still wait around to see what happens in book 2. So, kudos to the author for handling that well. The next book is titled Cleopatra Rising and is set to be released in March 2015. I can’t wait for book 2 to see how the characters and situations further develop!
If you love action, adventure, mythology and fictional universes, you would love this book. I give this book 4 out of 5, which by Goodreads standards mean that I ‘really liked it’.
Links to the book
Source : I received a complimentary ebook copy for review purposes. All opinions are 100% my own.