Review: Into the Dreaming

Into the Dreaming
Into the Dreaming by Karen Marie Moning
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Into the Dreaming is actually a novella beefed up by some bonus material that included remnants of a false start to one of her other novels, a candid look at the publication process and a sneak peek at an upcoming comic book Karen Marie Moning is a part of. This is also my first foray into her imagination, as I was looking for something short to read. I’ve seen numerous complaints on here about the length of the story itself, because some people feel ripped off that they paid novel price for a book that was mostly filler material. I understand their concerns, and perhaps the price should have been lowered on the digital editions to account for the padded material that doesn’t even take up physical space on the digital copy. As I received my copy of the book from the library, however, I was able to read it without any judgments on the price.

When I first finished the novella, my rating was hovering around three stars, unsure of how I felt about the author’s voice. There was nothing wrong with the novella, but it wasn’t long enough for me to get an accurate assessment on her voice to really make it sparkle for me. The heroine is an unpublished author who has been having dreams about the same man for as long as she can remember. Turns out, those dreams are about a real man who’s her soulmate but has been enslaved mind and body and she only has a twenty-eight day window in which to make him remember the life they shared in her dreams and free him from the dark king’s spell. One night she gets whisked away from her ordinary life of rejection letters and into the past where she gets the opportunity to meet the man of her dreams who doesn’t remember her at all. The people of the village are more than thrilled to have people living in the castle again, so they help the new “couple” fix up the place while she simultaneously tries to fix him. By writing erotica, involving the two of them, the same erotica that she couldn’t get published back in the real world. There’s not much else to say about the plot, because it’s a novella, and most well-read romance readers could figure out where this is going anyway.

The book itself, the novella and the bonus material included, equals a great commentary on the state of the publishing industry. It was reading through her struggles on getting published, and how what everyone wanted her to write was what actually performed the least successfully that made me fall in love with her voice. So I probably will pick another of her books from the library one of these days so I can investigate them as well. I was actually disappointed when I discovered her blog was primarily about her books in recent entries, in the sense of release dates and parties and not background information on them, as I had been excited to look at her take on other topics in literature.

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