Title: The Nightmare Affair Author: Mindee Arnett Series: The Arkwell Academy #1 Publisher: Tor Teen Release Date: 5th March, 2013 Buy: Amazon Goodreads Summary
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.
“Imagination is magic.”
This was such a fun read!!!
Like most people, what intrigued me about this book was the nightmare concept. There aren’t a lot of books written about actual nightmares or anything close to that for that matter. I always love it when I discover a whole new type of paranormal species or a whole new idea of paranormal. Basically Nightmares sit on you and eat the stuff your dreams are made up off, namely fictus. Dusty just came into power a few months ago and had her world turn upside down, she had to join the Arkwell Academy, leaving behind her old school and friends. But Dusty isn’t just any Nightmare she is also a Dream seer, her other half being Eli Booker, a guy from her old school. Talk about awkward.
I think one of the things I really liked about this book was her reaction when she was told she may be a potential dream seer. She freaked out, not because she wanted to be normal-she couldn’t be that anyway, but because she didn’t want the attention. She doesn’t want to be special, she already gets more than her fair share of attention from being her mother’s daughter, who is and was a rule breaking person. People criticize her for the deeds her mother did and take their dislike of her mother out on her. Besides that, the small amount of magic she does have is hard enough to handle, add the extras she will get from the increased feeding. She is messed up.
“That’s half the problem. I have a hard enough time handling what I do have. Anything more and I’ll probably blow myself up.”
Her narration is also one of the main reasons this book is so awesome, you could write a book like this with a heavy, serious tone, but if I were to read this book with that kind of tone, I probably wouldn’t like it. But this isn’t the case. She is a really funny person. Always saying the funniest things despite the seriousness of what’s going on. No she isn’t exactly what I would call impulsive but her mouth… yeah, in her words;
“I know. I don’t mean to. My mouth just works independent of my brain sometimes”
She also has what one would call “mommy issues” but she doesn’t let them own her. She is her own person. Although, she does judge her mom a bit too quickly. I actually liked the relationship between the two, her mother is hilarious. She tries to kidnap her own daughter!!! She only has one friend, yes the social outcast cliché but seriously it hardly seems like a cliché. I liked her best friend. She is a siren rebelling against the sexual objectification of sirens. How cool is that? My only regret is that we don’t get to see her father. I really wished we would, he seems like the kind of parent I’d like, the kind you don’t usually find in YAs. From what Dusty says occasionally, I can see the relationship between the two would account for a good child-parent relationship that is hard to find in YA.
Okay so there are two guys, but I don’t see this as a love triangle for those who are worried about the presence of one. She doesn’t really go back and forth between the guys. But the point is this book isn’t really about her love life, it’s about what’s going on. So it’s all good. Eli and Paul happen to be the two guys. I like both their characters, but they do have a flat like feeling to them, so I am not sure how to describe them. Although I did judge Eli too quickly, I thought he would be a jerk, and Dusty a girl who is attracted to jerks. Thank god this isn’t the case.
This mystery aspect of this book is rather predictable but not in the outright obvious way, more in the “I have a feeling……” way. Nothing is obvious from the beginning; I started making predictions more than 2/3rds into the book. I had a lot of things to base my predictions on by then.
The ending though. My god. The last 3/4ths was intense. I was frozen, I couldn’t do anything but read but I WAS SO HAPPY for that twist of sorts. I wish I could say it but that would mean spoiling it. This is not fair!
Overall the book was amazing, one of my favorite reads. Plus it gets awesome points for including the existence of unicorns, of course there weren’t any unicorns in the book but they exist in this world Mindee has created.