Genre: YA Speculative Fiction/Fantasy
# of pages: 333 (hb)
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends, Macmillan
Recommended for: 13/14 up (perfect for 8th grade and beyond, not for content, but just reader maturity in general)
Quick Take: Perchance to Dream follows in the proud tradition of its predecessor, Eyes Like Stars, in bringing action, romance, humor, and everything in between! If you loved Eyes, my guess is that you will devour this next installment as well!
On the Plot: This story goes in a different direction from its predecessor: instead of the entire setting being within the Theatre, Bertie and Company take their show on the road; therefore there’s more action driving Perchance, and it gave me an exhilarated, adventuresome feeling as I was reading. Eyes, in my opinion, was more "clever" with its references to various plays and characters, whereas in Perchance, action propels the plot to a faster pace than in the first book, if that makes sense. Clever references of some of the Bard's more well-known play quotes were woven into the story, and Shakespearean fans will just be delighted - I sure was!
The romantic angle is more pronounced in Perchance, but it never took center stage, so if you're wary of love triangle stories (like me), you'll have no problem loving this installment. I have to say, though, that while I liked Nate and Ariel equally in Eyes, at the end of Perchance, I am now Team Ariel! I don’t fully trust him yet, and I’m sure there will be more revelations about him in Untitled Book Three (most of Perchance seemed to emphasize the search for Nate, and what he was going through), so I can’t wait to for more Ariel!
On the characters: I said this in Eyes, so forgive me if I sound redundant, but I really, really like Bertie! I just seem to identify with her, somehow, and so it was really nice to read about a character that I actually cared about! Sometimes, though, I wished she didn’t have to be quite so bossy, but she's someone I could relate to and she goes through a lot of the course of the story. I guess what I liked best about Bertie is her unwavering concentration: stuff gets thrown at her from all angles, and yet she never strays from her goal (in this case, to rescue Nate from the malicious Sea Goddess’ lair). Joining her on her journey are the hyper, food-frenzied Midsummer faeries! I love these little guys! Oh, and you too, Pease! These loveable sidekicks were hysterical and adorable from start-to-finish, and I just wish I had four little faerie pals, too!
As always, I remain a big, GUSHING fan of Mantchev’s clever, witty writing style. She has an amazing talent for taking Shakespearean quotes and scenarios and weaving them seamlessly into her narrative – I even underlined all the references I saw.
A very well done sequel! Can’t wait for Untitled Book Three!