I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Also by this author: The White Road
on June 16, 2015
Source: the publisher
The Beautiful Dreamer is a cruise ship bound for five days in the Caribbean. The first three days pass uneventfully; the hundreds of passengers are enjoying the relaxing sun and entertainment, including a medium who provides the passengers the ability to speak with lost loved ones. On the fourth day, however, things go horrifically wrong.
A fire in engine room causes a dead stop in the Gulf of Mexico. Soon, a power outage results in an end to pressurized systems, including one that regulates the lavatory systems. A woman is found dead in her cabin, perhaps as a result of too much partying, but with all the other mysterious happenings on the ship (including shadowy figures spotted in the lower cabins) everyone is on edge.
Quickly, the irritation and frustration pushes everyone past their breaking point, and violent attacks erupt throughout the ship. Help from the mainland is nowhere on sight. Once it does arrive, however, the press reports the ship is found without a single soul on board. Exactly what took place on The Beautiful Dreamer is kept silent....but why?
After reading (and adoring) The Three last year, I was thrilled when I learned of the upcoming publication of this title. Loosely tied to The Three (characters from the previous book are mentioned), I had high hopes for this one. Unfortunately, however, those high hopes were quickly diminished.
While Lotz’s talented storytelling continues in this novel, I just didn’t feel the connection and investment I had in reading the previous novels. At times, I found myself skimming, desperately hoping to be as terrified in reading as I was before. Certainly not a short book, I found the pacing to be lacking at times. Additionally, I didn’t feel the connection to the characters. There were many, and since I had difficulty in keeping track of who was who, I stopped caring, losing that connection to the characters and their doomed fate.
Like The Three, Lotz includes “found footage” by way of interviews that have been banned from public viewing. Unfortunately, however, the reader doesn’t get this glimpse of the truth until the last fifty pages of the novel. At this point, I’d already lost interest; having this at the end of the book was too delayed, in my mind. Perhaps if the found footage, instead, was dispersed throughout the book, hinting at the mysterious events surrounded the book, I may have maintained interest in the characters and storyline.
Readers new to Sarah Lotz are likely not to have the same reaction or response as I have in reading this novel. I won’t go as far as to not recommend this title, but simply state it didn’t live up to its predecessor. A lofty goal? Perhaps, but certainly one I think readers expect, if not demand.