Book Review: The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker

I was so excited to read this book when I happened upon the synopsis! Once I dived in far enough, I could tell it’s for a specific kind of reader. Readers who enjoy a multitude of characters and a general mysterious overtone that’s never really solved.

This book is about a mysterious, highly contagious disease that sends people into a sleeping-beauty like coma. Some people sleep walk, others are paralyzed, but one thing is for sure: They are alive, but dreaming.

I would have loved the story to center around one or two individuals, but the many characters got lost in the narrative pool. I had trouble remembering who was whose neighbor, who taught what class, who was asleep and who wasn’t. One particular character is a professor who has a newborn baby, and he finds himself trying to take care of his daughter when his wife succumbs to the mysterious sickness. There wasn’t near enough focus on him and his struggles, but that doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy the book as a whole.

The mystery is what kept me going, the mudding of the many characters made it not as special for me.

2/5 stars.


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