Book Reviews

The Dream Alchemist (Somnus 1) by Joanna Chambers

Genre Gay / Paranormal / Psychic Powers / Romance
Reviewed by Trish on 09-January-2018

Book Blurb

Bryn Llewelyn spends his life strung out on too much caffeine, fighting sleep at every turn. He can barely hold down a part-time job as he lurches from day to day, perpetually exhausted. 
He is trying to avoid Somnus, the dream world where people like Bryn—dreamwalkers—roam during their sleeping hours. 

Bryn has been dreamwalking since he was child. He’s never found navigating Somnus easy, but lately it’s become much, much harder. Each time he manifests in Somnus, he is helplessly drawn to a sinister tower. Something evil is imprisoned there—something that wants out—and every time Bryn falls asleep, he finds it more difficult to resist its lure. Not to mention the compelling man who patrols its walls…Laszlo Grimm.

As a teenager, Laszlo suffered from a sleep disorder so profound, his family had him locked up for treatment. Whilst the brutal “therapy” he underwent was successful, Laszlo paid a steep price for it—his ability to feel emotion. Now, for the first time in years, Laszlo’s night terrors are returning, and with them, his fears about being locked up again.

When Bryn and Laszlo meet in the real world, Bryn recognises Laszlo as the man he has already met in Somnus, but not only does Laszlo not know Bryn, he can’t even remember any of his dreams. 

Bryn fights to open Laszlo’s eyes to the truth but Laszlo cannot quite shake the conviction that his old condition is catching up with him...not least because Bryn Llewelyn is awakening emotions in him he hasn’t felt in years.

First Edition published by Samhain Publishing, 2014.

Book Review

Imagine a world where 99 percent of the inhabitants are drones, unaware of anything but their own fragmented viewpoints. Somnus is an alternate reality created by the combined dreaming consciousness of humanity. At one time, people with the ability to dreamwalk would either be a priest or a shaman, but in today’s reality they try to balance living in two worlds without going insane.

At first glance, Bryn Llewelyn appears to be just another young man who spends his time working, hanging out with his friends, playing video games, and various other activities. But in reality, Bryn is a Dreamwalker, able to consciously navigate in both worlds. Most Dreamwalkers' abilities manifest in their early-to-mid teens, but Bryn's appeared when he was seven. These days, Bryn does his best to stay awake with coffee, Red Bull and vodka chasers, and endless games of Halo, because when he does fall asleep, he goes to Somnus, a place he wants to avoid at all costs. While in Somnus, Bryn is drawn to a strange tower surrounded by Shades—the remnants of nightmares. He sees what appears to be a drone wandering around outside the tower, and is shocked when the man grabs him, throws him to the ground, and then kisses the living daylights out of him.

Lazlo Grimm hasn't felt any real emotion since his mother died when he was fourteen. After a stay at the Willows to cure his sleeping disorder, the treatments have left him unable to feel anything. His world has been reduced to the sensations of sights and sounds, tastes and touches—but nothing touches him inside. He spends his days in a numb grey fog, and as far as he knows, spends his nights in a dreamless state. Then Lazlo encounters a handsome brown-eyed stranger who claims to have met Lazlo in a dream, and, although Lazlo thinks the man is absolutely bonkers, events soon prove that Bryn isn't insane. As Lazlo and Bryn grow closer in the "real world", both are drawn into a battle by an ancient evil, unseen forces determined to use Lazlo and Bryn's dreamwalking talents to conquer first Somnus, then the world we live in.

I found myself utterly fascinated by the world built by this talented author, and just couldn't put it down. I was turning the pages as fast as I could to see what was going to happen next. If you want a thrilling tale that pulls you into a world where nothing is quite what it seems, and where two men fall in love amongst the chaos of two worlds, then this is definitely a book you need to check out as soon as possible!





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Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 235 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 06-July-2017
Price $3.99 ebook
Buy Link