Friday, April 19, 2013

The Nightmare Affair by Mindy Arnette

Book:  The Nightmare Affair
Author:  Mindy Arnette
Publisher:  Tor Teen
Date:  Now available
Source:  Publisher via Netgalley
My grade:  A-

Sixteen-year-old Dusty Everhart breaks into houses late at night, but not because she’s a criminal. No, she’s a Nightmare.


Being the only Nightmare at Arkwell Academy, a boarding school for magickind, and living in the shadow of her mother’s infamy, is hard enough. But when Dusty sneaks into Eli Booker’s house, things get a whole lot more complicated. He’s hot, which means sitting on his chest and invading his dreams couldn’t get much more embarrassing. But it does. Eli is dreaming of a murder.

Then Eli’s dream comes true.

Now Dusty has to follow the clues—both within Eli’s dreams and out of them—to stop the killer before more people turn up dead. And before the killer learns what she’s up to and marks her as the next target.

Initial reaction
 It was a lot like Harry Potter……until it wasn’t.

Cover story
 I really like this cover and I really like the title.  The title is catchy and the cover is pretty while remaining appropriate to the story.  Plus, I love purple.  I think this one is a winner.

What’s the Story
 When I first started reading this novel, it felt like I was having Harry Potter flashbacks.  Teen girl discovers she is magic and she has to go to a special boarding school for magical teens.  There are prejudices against magical kids who are not pure blooded.  In fact, those who are half-bloods (one magical parent and one non-magical parent) are called “mules”.  Sounding familiar?

I almost closed the book at the beginning because it just felt too much like HP.  I’m really glad I didn’t, because as I was reading, I suddenly realized that the book wasn’t so much like HP after all.  The beginning is for sure, and there are similar elements, but I found enough that was totally different and that made the book ok for me. 

Honestly, the creature aspect is very original.  Dusty (dumb nickname though) is a Nightmare.  Meaning, at night, she gets into people’s dreams and turns them into nightmares and she feeds off that energy.  She is a dark magic being, along with all sorts of demon creatures.  There are also witches and wizards and then a huge collection of other magical beings.  But all of them can perform magic.

As I got into the book, I found that I was intrigued by the relationship between Dusty and Eli, I was pulled into the mystery story line and I loved the references to classical mythology and Arthurian legend.  There were some really cool twists with those things that made this story very unique.  And even though the storyline sort of wrapped up, I was glad to see that there is another novel planned.  By the end of this one, I really liked the 3 main characters as well as Dusty’s mom and I was ready for another mystery!

So why the A-?  That beginning was really just a little too much Wizarding World for my comfort.  But in the end, the book delivered a really fun story that kept me entranced and entertained until the end.

The Soundtrack

Welcome to My Nightmare by Alice Cooper (Did you really think I wouldn't use this one??)

Lullaby by The Cure

Welcome to My Life by Simple Plan

Below My Feet by Mumford and Sons

Leave My Body by Florence + The Machine

Hello by Evanescence

All Around Me by Flyleaf

The Final Grade
My final grade for this one is A-.  There’s a minus because of the first part, but overall this novel was a dream, not a nightmare!!!

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