Eddie, Adam, David. Three boys, three generations, one gift: the ability to travel through time. Through a portal of dreams, they can appear as ghosts, wherever and whenever they want.
The first boy, Eddie, is the genius who has sworn to protect the past and carry on the dreamwalker's code.
The second, Adam, is a haunter, a dream-terrorist, dead-set on changing history for his own nefarious ends.
The third, David, is the neophyte who must fight for the future by keeping the other two apart! Can he surf the time warps, back and forth between 1940s London and today, to save the present from oblivion?
After his father's death, David began to dream of strange things. He visits a boy in 1940s London, and though David knows they are just dreams, his friendship with Eddie feels as real as his waking life. When a forceful team attempt to abduct David from school, he learns there is more to his dreams than simple sleep. David is one of the gifted Dreamwalkers who can travel to other times and locations during sleep. He appears to others as a ghost, and in fact, that is how his mysterious dream friend has come to identify him. David teams up with other Dreamwalkers to stop a vicious group called Haunters who use the dreamwalking ability to control and manipulate history. The group's current target is Eddie, David's dream friend. With his new allies, David must stop the Haunters from destroying Eddie and ending the Dreamwalker project altogether, but in order to succeed, they will have to defeat the most powerful Dreamwalker the team has ever known. Haunters is peppered with interesting characters and early teen awkwardness as scenes flip back and forth between modern day and World War II ravaged London. Tension mounts as David's quest becomes more urgent, making this a difficult novel to put down once one reaches its midpoint. Fans of sci-fi or super-hero stories will enjoy this time-traveling, super-human story, though the title leaves one pondering why the novel is named for its villains rather than its heroes. Reviewer: Kasey Giard
- Johanna Nation-Vallee
David Utherwise has an unusual skill. He is a Dreamwalker: someone whose consciousness travels to other times and locations while he sleeps. David has a friend in his dreams, a boy named Eddie living in 1940 wartime London. One night, David rescues Eddie from his burning house, only to attract the attention of The Haunting, a sinister dreamwalking organization that is also very interested in Eddie. When Haunters attempt to kidnap David from school the next day, he is rescued by the rival Dreamwalker Project and is whisked away to Unsleep House in Switzerland. There he is initiated into the secret world of dreamwalking and discovers its importance to his family history. Along with other Dreamwalkers, who are all teenagers, David is thrown into a dangerous mission to save Eddie from the Haunting and a particularly powerful Haunter named Adam. Whereas the Dreamwalker Project uses the skills of its participants for research, The Haunting seeks to change history in order to gain power. It is up to David, his friends, and a computer named Misty to stop Adam and restore the original historical timeline. Taylor's book is imaginative and his world vividly described. The action is well paced and the characters are engaging. This book should enjoy broad appeal among younger teens, and will probably draw in older ones as well. Students interested in science fiction and the paranormal will find much to enjoy in this original story. Reviewer: Johanna Nation-Vallee
School Library Journal
Gr 5–9—For more than a year, David Utherwise's vivid dreams have included Eddie, to the point that David considers him a close friend. It's not until two separate groups are after him that he discovers that Eddie might be something other than a dream figure. Taken from his family and brought to the Unsleep House in Geneva, he encounters mysterious Professor Feldrake, who reveals that David is a dreamwalker, and that what he thought were dreams were travels back in time to the London Blitz. David has been meeting the 14-year-old version of his grandfather, Edmund Utherwise. These supernatural meetings inspire the adult Eddie to develop a practical theory of ghosts and to found the Dreamwalker Project. David finds that a rogue group, the Haunting, thinks nothing of manipulating past events in ways that allow them to profit. Recently, Adam, a star student at Unsleep House, has defected to the Haunting. His knowledge could very well allow the Haunting to capture the childhood Eddie, bringing about the destruction of the Unsleep House, the only thing that stands in the way of the Haunting ruling the world. When Adam disguises himself as David to lure Eddie into a house that is about to be bombed, Eddie narrowly escapes, but that slight change in history means that now he is wandering around London in grave danger. Chapters alternate between current-day Geneva and 1940 London. The race between the Haunters and the Dreamwalkers to locate Eddie will keep readers turning pages, but the final surprise twist and cliff-hanger ending may leave some readers frustrated.—Kim Dare, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA
This fast-paced novel incorporates a variety of tropes and modes--time travel and dream walking, adventure and suspense--to produce a rewarding, page-turning read. For about a year--ever since his father died--14-year-old English schoolboy David Utherwise has been dreaming about a boy named Eddie, who has become something of a "dream friend." One night, he has nightmares in which Eddie is trapped in a burning house during the Blitz, and the next day is really tough, to put it mildly. He is bullied in class, a set of total strangers attempts to abduct him, and a different set succeeds in kidnapping him. Scruffy Professor Feldrake explains David's importance to a benign group of time travelers determined to keep Eddie, who is a very real boy living in an earlier time, alive. The story is told in chapters that switch from World War II–era London to a modern-day citadel inside a Swiss mountain, a technique that produces a series of breathtaking cliffhangers and ramps up suspense considerably. A variety of characters, many of them ill-intentioned, add oomph to the propulsive plot but not much depth. This solid adventure with its many teen characters will appeal to a wide audience; the epilogue leaves many threads hanging, giving promise of at least one more outing. Reluctant readers and adventure/suspense junkies will gallop through this volume and haunt the shelves for the sequel. (Adventure. 10-14)
THOMAS TAYLOR's first commission as an artist was for the cover of the original British edition of HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHER'S STONE. HAUNTERS is his first work as a novelist. He lives in Hastings, England.