Mysterious doors with lizard-head knobs. Talking stone statues. A crazy girl with a hatchet. Yes, Liv's dreams have been pretty weird lately. Especially the one where she's in a graveyard at night, watching four boys conduct dark magic rituals.
The strangest part is that Liv recognizes the boys in her dream. They're classmates from her new school in London, the school where she's starting over because her mom has moved them to a new country (again). But what's really scaring Liv is that the dream boys seem to know things about her in real life, things they couldn't possibly knowunless they actually are in her dreams? Luckily, Liv never could resist a good mystery, and all four of those boys are pretty cute....
Kerstin Gier has a flair for blending fresh, irresistible combinations of comedy, romance and humor, even twisting a little horror into Dream a Little Dream, book one in her latest series, the Silver trilogy.
About the Author
Kerstin Gier is the New York Times–bestselling author of the Ruby Red trilogy, which has been translated into twenty-five languages.
Read an Excerpt
Dream a Little Dream
The Silver Trilogy Book One
By Kerstin Gier, Anthea Bell
Henry Holt and CompanyCopyright © 2013 Kerstin Gier
All rights reserved.
THE DOG WAS SNUFFLING at my bag. For a drug-tracking dog it was a surprisingly fluffy specimen, like a golden retriever, and I was just going to tickle it behind the ears when it bared its teeth and uttered a threatening "Woof!" Then it sat down and pressed its nose hard against the side of my bag. The customs officer seemed to be as surprised as I was. He looked twice from the dog to me and back again before reaching for the bag and saying, "Okay, then, let's see what our Amber's found in there."
Oh, great. Less than half an hour on British soil, and I was already under suspicion of drug smuggling. The genuine smugglers in the line behind me probably couldn't believe their luck. Thanks to me, they could stroll through the barrier at their leisure, with their Swiss watches and designer drugs. What customs man in his right mind was going to pick a fifteen-year-old girl with a ponytail out of the line, instead, for instance, of that nervous-looking guy with the shifty expression back there? Or the suspiciously pale boy with tousled hair on the plane who had gone to sleep before we even reached the runway to take off? No wonder he was grinning so gleefully. His pockets were probably stuffed full of illegal sleeping pills.
But I decided not to let myself get upset. Beyond the barrier, after all, a wonderful new life was waiting for us, with exactly the home we'd always dreamed of.
I cast a reassuring glance at my little sister, Mia, who had already reached the barrier and was bobbing impatiently up and down on the balls of her feet. This was only the last hurdle standing between us and the aforesaid wonderful new life. Everything was okay. The flight had gone smoothly, no turbulence, so Mia didn't have to throw up, and for once I hadn't been sitting next to a fat man stinking of beer and competing with me for the armrest. And although, as usual, Papa had booked us on one of those cheapo airlines, the plane hadn't run out of fuel when we had to circle above Heathrow while we waited to land. There'd also been that good-looking dark-haired boy in the row in front of me on the other side of the plane, who turned around to smile at me remarkably often. I'd been at the point of saying something to him, but then I'd seen he was leafing through a magazine for football fans, moving his lips as he read, so I hadn't. The same boy, incidentally, was now staring rather curiously at my bag. In fact, everyone was staring curiously at my bag.
Wide-eyed, I looked at the customs man and smiled my very nicest smile. "Please ... we're in such a hurry, the plane came in late, and we were waiting for ages at baggage collection. And my mom is waiting out there to meet my little sister and me. I promise, word of honor, there's nothing in my bag but dirty laundry and ..." At that exact moment I remembered what else was in the bag, so I fell silent for a second. "Well, anyway, there aren't any drugs in it," I finished in a rather subdued voice, looking reproachfully at the dog. Stupid animal!
The customs man, unmoved, heaved the bag up onto a table. A colleague of his unzipped it and folded back the top. Everyone standing around probably realized instantly what the dog had smelled. Because, to be honest, it didn't really take a dog's sensitive nose to place it.
"What in hell ...?" asked the customs man, and his colleague held his nose while he began clearing my clothes to one side with his fingertips. It must have looked to the spectators as if it was my things that stank to high heaven.
"Cheese from the Entlebuch Biosphere reserve in Switzerland," I explained as my face probably turned much the same color as the burgundy bra that the man was inspecting. "Five and a half pounds of unpasteurized Swiss cheese." Although I didn't remember it smelling quite so bad. "Tastes better than it smells — honest."
The silly dog, Amber, shook herself. I heard people chuckling, and you could bet the genuine smugglers were rubbing their hands together with glee. I thought I'd rather not know what the good-looking dark-haired boy was doing. Probably just feeling thankful that he hadn't asked me for my phone number.
"That's what I call a brilliant hiding place for drugs," said someone behind us, and I looked at Mia and sighed heavily. Mia sighed too. We really were in a hurry.
However, it was naïve of us to think that only the cheese still stood between us and our wonderful new life — in fact, the cheese just lengthened the period of time during which we firmly believed we did have a wonderful new life ahead of us.
Most girls probably dream of other things, but Mia and I wished for nothing more fervently than a real home. One we'd stay in for longer than a year. With a room for each of us.
This was our sixth move in eight years, meaning six different countries on four different continents, starting at a new school six times, making new friends six times, saying goodbye to them six times. We were experts at packing and unpacking, we kept our personal possessions to a minimum, and it's easy to guess why neither of us played the piano.
Mom was a professor of literary studies (with two doctoral degrees), and almost every year she held a post as a lecturer at a different university. We'd been living in Pretoria until June, and before that we'd lived in Utrecht, Berkeley, Hyderabad, Edinburgh, and Munich. Our parents had divorced seven years ago. Papa was an engineer and as restless as Mom, meaning he went to live in different places just as often. So we couldn't even spend our summer vacations at one and the same place; it always had to be wherever Papa was working at the time. Right now he was working in Zurich, so this last vacation had been comparatively good (several trips to the mountains of Switzerland and a visit to the biosphere, home of the cheese), but unfortunately not all the places where we'd happened to find ourselves were as nice as that.
Lottie, our au pair, sometimes said we ought to be grateful that our parents' work meant we saw so much of the world, except, to be honest, once you've spent a summer on the outskirts of an industrial area of Bratislava, it's easy to keep your gratitude within bounds.
Starting this fall, Mom would be teaching at Magdalen College, Oxford, fulfilling a great dream of hers. She'd wished for a teaching post at the University of Oxford for decades. And the little eighteenth-century cottage she'd rented just outside the city fulfilled a dream of our own. We were going to settle down at last and have a real home. In photos the house had looked romantic and comfortable, and as if it were full of wonderful, scary mysteries from the cellar to the attic. There was a large garden, with old trees and a summerhouse, and from the second-floor windows you had a view right down to the Thames, at least in winter. Lottie was planning to grow vegetables, make her own jam, and join the Women's Institute. Mia wanted to build a tree house, get a rowboat, and tame an owl, and I dreamed of finding a chest full of old letters in the attic and solving all the cottage's mysteries. We also definitely wanted to hang a swing in one of the trees — a swing made out of a rusty old iron bedstead where you could lie and look up at the sky. And we were going to have a real English picnic at least every other day, and the house would smell of Lottie's homemade cookies. Maybe of cheese fondue as well, because the customs officers had chopped our nice Entlebuch Biosphere cheese into such tiny little pieces that there was nothing else to be done with it.
When we finally got out of customs and into the main arrivals hall of the airport (incidentally, it turned out that there was no law against bringing a few pounds of cheese into Great Britain for one's personal use), it took Mom less than a minute to pop our dream of English country life like a soap bubble.
"There's been a slight change of plan, mousies," she told us after we'd all hugged and said hello, and in spite of her radiant smile, you could see her guilty conscience written all over her face.
Behind her, a man was approaching with an empty baggage cart, and without looking closely, I knew who he was: the change of plan in person.
"I hate changes of plan," muttered Mia.
Mom was still smiling for all she was worth. "You'll love this one," she said, untruthfully. "Welcome to London, the most exciting city in the world!"
"Welcome home," said Mr. Change of Plan in a deep, warm voice, heaving our bags up into the cart.
I hated changes of plan too, from the bottom of my heart.CHAPTER 2
ON OUR FIRST NIGHT in London I dreamed of Hansel and Gretel. Or, to be precise, I dreamed that Mia and I were Hansel and Gretel and Mom had taken us into the forest and left us there. "It's for your own good!" she said before she disappeared among the trees. Poor little Hansel and I wandered helplessly around until we came to a mysterious gingerbread house. Luckily I woke up before the wicked witch came out of it, but I felt only a second of relief, and it occurred to me that my dream wasn't all that far from the truth. Mom had said, "It's for your own good!" about seventeen times yesterday. I was still so furious with her that I felt like grinding my teeth nonstop.
I did realize that even people over forty have a right to a full and satisfactory love life, but couldn't she have waited until we were grown up? A few years weren't going to make much difference to her now. And if she absolutely had to spend time with Mr. Change of Plan, wouldn't a weekend relationship be enough for her? Did she have to turn our whole life upside down? Couldn't she at least have asked us?
Mr. Change of Plan's real name, incidentally, was Ernest Spencer, and he had driven us here in his car last night, making conversation all the time in such a cheerful, casual way, you'd have thought he didn't even notice that Mia and I were so disappointed and furious that we were fighting back tears and didn't say a word. (And it was a long drive from the airport into the city.) Not until Ernest was taking our baggage out of the trunk of the car did Mia get her voice back.
"Oh no," she said, with her very sweetest smile, handing him back the plastic bag with the dismembered cheese in it. "This is for you. A present from Switzerland."
Ernest exchanged a delighted glance with Mom. "Why, thank you both. That's really nice of you!"
Mia and I grinned at each other quite happily — but that was the only good moment of the evening. Ernest went home with his stinking, ruined cheese, after kissing Mom and assuring us of how much he was looking forward to tomorrow evening. Because we were invited to his house then, to meet his children.
"We're looking forward to it too," said Mom.
You bet your life.
* * *
The moment we first laid eyes on him, we were suspicious of Ernest I'm-just-like-mystuffy-old-first-name Spencer. He'd even brought presents, which showed he was in dead earnest about Mom. Normally the men in Mom's life don't show any interest in sucking up to Mia and me — far from it. They'd always done their best to ignore us as much as possible. But Ernest had brought me a book about secret messages and codes and how to decipher them, which really did look very interesting. Only with Mia he didn't get it quite right; he gave her a book called Maureen the Little Detective, but now that she was nearly thirteen, she was a few years too old for it. However, the mere fact that Ernest had asked about our interests made him different.
And Mom was besotted with him — don't ask me why. It couldn't be his looks. Ernest had a large bald patch, enormous ears, and teeth that were far too white. It was all very well for Lottie to insist that Ernest was a handsome man; we just couldn't go along with her opinion. Maybe he did have nice eyes, but with ears like that who was going to look into his eyes? Not to mention that he was ancient — over fifty. His wife had died more than ten years ago, and he lived in London with his two children. Mia the little detective and I had Googled to check up on him at once. Google knew all about Ernest Spencer because he was one of those star lawyers who are always getting into the papers, whether it's outside the Royal Courts of Justice or on the red carpet at a charity gala. And his late wife had been two hundred and first, or something like that, in line to the throne of England, so he moved in the top circles of society.
By all the laws of probability, Ernest and Mom should never have crossed each other's paths. But a mean trick on the part of fate, and Ernest's special subject — international commercial law — had taken him to Pretoria six months ago, and he and Mom had met at a party. Idiots that we were, we'd even encouraged her to go to it, so she'd have a nice evening and get to know people.
And that had landed us in this mess.
* * *
"Keep still, dear!" Lottie was tugging at the hem of my skirt, but it was no use; it was too short.
Lottie Wastlhuber had come to us twelve years ago as an au pair and stayed on ever since. Which was a good thing, because otherwise we'd have had to survive on sandwiches. Mom usually forgot about meals, and she hated to cook. Without Lottie, no one would have braided our hair into funny German styles, but then again, no one would have given birthday parties for our dolls or decorated the Christmas tree with us. In fact, we probably wouldn't even have had a Christmas tree, because Mom didn't think much of customs and traditions. She was also terribly forgetful, the very image of an absentminded professor. She forgot absolutely everything: fetching Mia from her flute lessons, the name of our dog, and where she'd parked the car. We'd all have been lost without Lottie.
Not that Lottie was infallible. She'd bought my school uniform a size too small, the same as every year, and also the same as every year, she was trying to blame it on me.
"I just don't see how anyone can grow so much in a single summer," she wailed, doing her best to button the blazer up over my breasts. "And then there's all this up here! You did it on purpose!"
"Yes, sure!" Although I was as cross as I could be, I had to grin. Lottie might have congratulated me. "All this up here" might not be especially impressive for someone nearly sixteen, but at least I wasn't flat as a board anymore. So I didn't think it was so bad if I had to leave the blazer unbuttoned. Along with the skirt being too short, it gave me kind of a cool look, and it did show off as much of my figure as possible.
"It looks much better on Liv," complained Mia, who was already dressed in her own outfit. "Why didn't you buy mine a size too small as well? And why are all school uniforms dark blue? And why is the school called Frognal Academy when it doesn't have a frog on its crest?" She sullenly patted the embroidered crest on the breast pocket of her blazer. "I look dumb. Everything here is dumb." She turned slowly on her own axis, pointing to the unfamiliar items of furniture around us and saying in an extra-loud voice, "Dumb. Dumb. Dumb. Dumb. Right, Livvy? We'd been looking forward so much to the cottage in Oxford, and instead we end up here. ..."
"Here" was the apartment where Ernest had dropped us off last night, on the third floor of a rather grand block somewhere in the northwest of London. It had four bedrooms, gleaming marble floors, and a whole lot of furniture and other stuff that didn't belong to us. (Much of it was gilded, even the sofa cushions.) According to the nameplate beside the doorbell, it belonged to some people called Finchley. They obviously collected china ballerinas. There were ballerinas all over the place.
I nodded. "We don't even have our favorite things here," I said in a voice just as loud as Mia's.
"Shh," said Lottie, glancing anxiously over her shoulder. "You both know perfectly well that this is only temporary. And the cottage was a catastrophe." She had given up tugging at my uniform. It didn't do any good.
"Yes, so Mr. Spencer says," said Mia. (We were supposed to call him by his first name, but we pretended we'd forgotten.)
Excerpted from Dream a Little Dream by Kerstin Gier, Anthea Bell. Copyright © 2013 Kerstin Gier. Excerpted by permission of Henry Holt and Company.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog*** Dream A Little Dream by Kerstin Gier Book One of the Silver Trilogy Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) Publication Date: April 14, 2015 Rating: 4 stars Source: ARC sent by the publisher Summary (from Goodreads): Mysterious doors with lizard-head knobs. Talking stone statues. A crazy girl with a hatchet. Yep, Liv’s dreams have been pretty weird lately. Especially this one where she’s in a graveyard at night, watching four boys perform dark magic rituals. The really weird thing is that Liv recognizes the boys in her dream. They’re classmates from her new school in London, the school where’s she’s starting over because her mom has moved them to a new country (again). But they seem to know things about her in real life that they couldn't possibly know, which is mystifying. Then again, Liv could never resist a good mystery. . . . What I Liked: Kerstin Gier does it again! I wish all of her books could be picked up by USA publishers, because I've been quite in love with her books since Ruby Red was published in the United States, in 2011. The Ruby Red trilogy is one of my favorite series of all time! In this new series, Liv is leaving one place for another, but her new home has some... interesting people to it. Her and her younger sister, Mia, are constantly traveling and moving, as their mother is a professor (their father is as well, but the parents are divorced). The girls show up in London, and the first person their mother introduces them to? Surprise - her boyfriend! Whom she will be marrying, and Liv and Mia will being moving in to his house. Liv's soon-to-be stepbrother, is a strange, quite one, and her soon-to-be-stepsister is pushy and a bit rude, and her soon-to-be-stepfather is old and just a bother in general. Attending school means meeting new people, and Liv immediately meets Grayson's friends - Arthur, Jasper, and Henry. Things get weird when Liv starts dreaming, and the four boys are in her dreams. Or she's in theirs. When they want her to join their strange dream group, Liv is skeptical, but she joins. But perhaps things aren't so plausible - perhaps things are much more sinister than they appear... One thing that strikes me in all of Gier's books is the humor. I love how funny Liv's voice is, how Gier makes Liv a tiny bit awkward, a lot sweet, and a bit sarcastic, in a funny way. This book is hilarious, even if there are parts that are very serious, and borderline scary. I liked Liv. She has a distinct voice, and it's so great to watch the story unfold from her perspective. She likes logic and science, and likes to figure things out. She joins the boys and their bizarre rituals, but mostly she wants to help them, and wants to prove to herself that demons aren't real. See, the boys tried to summon a demon who will grant their hearts' desire. On Halloween. Wild. I like the boys. There are four of them, one of them being the stepbrother (Grayson), the other three being his friends. They're all described as super good-looking, like shampoo commercial guys. Each has their own personality. Jasper is very rambunctious, and doesn't really take things seriously. Grayson is a bit protective. Arthur... he's an odd one (and you'll see why, at the end of this book). Henry is the mysterious and brooding one, but he's also very sweet. Another thing that I really liked about this book is the sister-sister relationship! Usually, the younger sister is SO ANNOYING, and I dislike her a lot (like, genuinely dislike her, not dislike her as the kid sister). Mia is about five years younger, but she's mature for her age, yet fun like a child should be. I liked her a lot, which surprised me. The story is quite interesting and goes by very quickly. I was really strapped for time this week (soooo many exams and papers and research), but I finished this one faster than I expected. I love how Gier writes - her writing is beautiful, but also very easy to read and pay attention to. Seriously, anyone could read her books, translated or not, and know her writing style and voice. There IS romance in this book! Check out my Swoon Thursday post from yesterday (March 12th) if you want a little insight on the romance. The love interest is pretty swoony, and he's more than a love interest - he plays quite pivotal roles in the book. No love triangle, and while Liv becomes infatuated with the love interest pretty quickly, I wouldn't call it insta-love. More like insta-interest. There are no declarations of love or serious feelings, so no insta-love. The romance is really sweet, but also very subtle and a bit in the background compared to the story. The story was intriguing and almost scary at some points! Dreams are beautiful and scary places. I didn't see the climax coming - and it occurs pretty late, around 90% of the book. But I couldn't stop reading. This book wraps up pretty nicely, but in a way that you KNOW there will be more books (hence, the Silver Trilogy). No cliffhanger though, yay! What I Did Not Like: Nothing in particular - I might have wanted a little more from the romance, but I know how Gier writes in the romance into the story of her books, and it's always very slow and subtle. Which is cool, I'm fine with that. Would I Recommend It: Yes! Great paranormal/fantasy read, set in the contemporary world. This one was fun and easy and quick, and not to mention lush in details and gorgeous in writing. And the cover is pretty great! I liked the original USA cover, but this new cover is spectacular. In any case, I'd recommend any Gier book I've read (now four), this one included! Rating: 4 stars. I'll definitely be reading book two as soon as I can get my hands on it! Noooow, please! I wonder if there are editions in Spanish (bilingual for the win!)... I'll buy one of those, if I have to!
Love it! Can't wait for the net!
Literally I couldn't stop reading this and was actually depressed that at the time the second book hadn't come out yet but it was said to come out soon. Highly recommended
Great character development and fun characters. This was a unique read and had some funny dialogue. I love that the main character has a nanny /au pair ?. Kerstin Geir is one of my favorite authors.
Liv and her sister are great characters, relateable with spunky and humorous personalities. The characters in this novel are what I loved the most. Liv is drawn to the dark and brooding Henry from the mysterious group of boys with a secret. They can all dream-walk for some reason, and when Liv is able to - the boys see her as a way out of their predicament. love this 1st book out of the trilogy & recommend to all
Dream a Little Dream is a little complicated to explain, but a great book and would love for more people to read it. So for my review I decided to break it down into parts. Here's what I liked: The book is told in first person through Liv. Liv is a sassy girl trying to adapt to her new home at her mother’s boyfriends house. After she learns that her classmates were dabbling in black magic to resurrect a Demon, she isn’t afraid to offer her help even though it puts her in danger. That doesn’t mean she kept a serious face though. Liv is hilarious and sarcastic as she tries to not laugh while her classmates drew circles and chanted Latin words for a ritual. Liv’s humor made the book enjoyable and drew me in in the first pages. The dreams. A big part of what made me want to read the book was the twist on the dreams. After moving, Liv starts getting dreams involving the four popular boys at her school. The five interact in their dreams and are all able to remember them afterwards. Liv’s newfound ability allows her to go into other people’s dreams and that plus the black magic is where the excitement happens. The plot. The main story line involves the dreams and the black magic to revive the Demon. It was easy to read and didn’t drag on at all throughout the book. The “filler” portion of the book where Liv explores her dreams and investigated the boys wasn't boring even though there was no major problem in those parts. NO LOVE TRIANGLE/SQUARE. The four supermodels of the school that all the girls drool over are Grayson, Henry, Arthur, and Jasper. Grayson being her soon-to-be stepbrother is obviously knocked out as an opinion (but if I had to choose a boy it would totally be him). From the premise, I assumed that they were all going to fight over Liv, but it was pretty obvious who Liv’s love interest is from the beginning. In a way, it could be described as instalove but I think it worked in this situation. The romance is actually very cute. I think it could be described as the early dating/crushing phase of a relationship because it wasn't too overpowering or a main focus of the story. Even with this many boys, they were all different. Grayson is the cliche protective older brother, Henry is the quiet and mysterious one, Jasper oozes in flirtatious charm, and Arthur, the poss prince of the school. What I think could’ve been worked on: The world building. For such an interesting world with all the dreams and demons, it wasn’t explained very well. It was never explained why Liv was able to enter other people’s dreams. The boys had a tendency to straight up ignore Liv's questions when it got "too dangerous" and while it was supposed to keep up the image of the mysterious, beautiful boys, it got annoying and left a lot of questions. Overall, I enjoyed Dream a Little Dream, and will be looking forward to reading the rest of the series soon. I found the first book very fun and hope that continues. Gier’s Ruby Red will also be added onto my to-read list.
Read more: http://www.sarcasmandlemons.com/2015/05/review-dream-little-dream-by-kerstin.html the basics You know those books that you know you'll love as soon as you see the cover? Then you spend a year anticipating them, and when you finally read them . . . they're even better than you'd dreamt. Such is Gier's novel. I've been waiting for it since it was just Silber in German; I nearly died of joy when I saw they were translating it. I raced through it, delighting in every page of the bubbly, exciting plot. All the ingredients are there: an innovative dream world, a sinister plot, a curious and independent heroine, and an adorably healthy romance. Seriously, all the swooning. (Did I mention they're British?) Moreover, the writing is that dryly humorous, subtly pretty style that I love. Finally, the book has this magical quality. I can't put my finger on how, but it gives off the same feelings of bubbly whimsy that I get when reading Howl's Moving Castle. My main complaint? The sequel isn't out yet. I guess I'll learn German?
I just never got into Dream a Little Dream. At first, I thought I'd love it. I'm not sure if I just didn't like the writing style or some things got lost in translation, but the story really bottomed out and dragged for me. I'm a very character driven reader. And these characters just didn't do it for me. Instead of connecting with Liv, I spent a lot of time frustrated with her. She didn't stop to think, and I wanted to shake some sense into her! There wasn't much on the romance front, either. There were definitely hints at something that may unfold in future books in this series, though. The dream sequences were so strange for me. I think it may have been the translation. I felt like I would have liked them if they had been described more concisely, but they were too vague for me. Or maybe that's all because of my lack of interest in this book. A lot of people are fans of this author's other series, and I think that group will enjoy this book. But I'm not so sure that the masses will enjoy it. It could use a better translation with more attention to detail to make it really shine. That being said, this isn't a bad book. It just wasn't for me and became boring for me because of that. **I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review with no compensation.
The intriguing premise is what drew me to Dream a Little Dream. The mystery of what supernatural forces are at work is what kept me reading. Though the plot has potential to really delve into the mysterious and fantastical elements working in the dream world and the supernatural rituals that the four boys appear to be doing, it focuses more on the day-to-day happenings than the dreams. While this is different from my typical UF read, I found it refreshing how the novel kept me questioning what was caused by supernatural forces and what was caused by coincidence. That said, I felt like Gier was more interested in exploring the relationships among the different characters than the supernatural elements. Not only is more time spent in the everyday world, the heroine Liv spends quite a bit of her time thinking about romantic / high school clichés and how she is above all that (until she isn't anymore)—so much that it got old fast. Real nerd girls may think that from time to time, but most of the human thoughts tend to drift to what we do like. The romance also came out of nowhere. Liv has barley met the guy, they only hang out in dreams from time to time, and he hasn't given out much information about himself. Up until the end, I was pretty sure that the romance would head in another direction. It doesn't help that the characters are all pretty much one-dimensional and without much substance. The character that I found to have the most depth, even more so than Liv, was Grayson. He is the only character that seems to have any sense (as a couple characters point out), he shows a variety of emotions (especially when he's worrying over Liv, though the reason behind his concern isn't fully explained), and there are multiple dimensions to his character (most notably revealed when he tells Liv what he wished for). That said, even Grayson didn't have much character development. No one person beyond Liv is given much page time. When they do appear, most of the focus is on clichéd scenarios that appear in too many YA novels instead of fleshing out their characters. In the end, I can tell you about who the characters out, but I can't say what drives them. What makes them who they are. The plot was also lackluster. One reason is that the novel tends to gloss over the details. While the dialogue wasn't terrible, there isn't a good balance between dialogue and details. The scenery and the characters' behavior isn't really given during scenes. In fact, much of the characters' behavior doesn't make sense. It doesn't seem like Gier gave much thought into the meaning and motivation behind their actions. For example, I can't see Grayson being so focused on texting that his father's announcement at dinner didn't register much response from him. A normal high school student wouldn't definitely react or at least show some emotion. I also couldn't feel Liv's presence in the narration. While she does have thoughts, they are distinct from the backdrop, from the characters actions and the going ons at the time. There is one more thing I want to note. Liv repeats (much too often) her line on how she knows kung fu. Girls, there is a difference between knowing kung fu and being foolishly courageous. Merely knowing some form of martial arts is not the solution to everything. For example, it's plain stupid to follow two guys you barely know (with at least one more on the way) into someone's basement on the basis that you can defend yourself with kung fu. Isn't the point of self defense also to know how to avoid dangerous situations in the first place? Despite the seriously clichéd turn of events, Dream a Little Dream is still interesting enough that I'll be checking out the second novel in the series. My questions going forth into the series are: (1) will the romantic interest change, (2) what is the supernatural power at work, and (3) why are these peoples' dreams connected?