Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Review: The Nightmare Affair by Mindee Arnett

Title: The Nightmare Affair
Author: Mindee Arnett
Publisher: Tor Teen
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Paranormal, Mystery
Release date: March 5th, 2013
Pages: 367 (ARC)
Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: Publisher
Goodreads | Amazon | Author

Sixteen-year-old Dusty Everhart breaks into houses late at night, but not because she’s a criminal. No, she’s a Nightmare. Literally. 

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.

Dusty is a little new to this whole Nightmare business.  She's a halfling, which means that her dad was a human and her mom was of magickind.  As one of the only Nightmares at Arkwell, she stands out, especially when she goes to her weekly dream-feeding session and enters the dream, finding the dead body of a girl she goes to school with.  Unfortunately, the dream turns out to be real and Dusty finds herself stuck in the middle of a murder mystery.  Why is this happening, and why is there so much pressure put on her find out what will happen next?

The author introduces a new paranormal creature that we haven't read about in YA before.  It's an interesting idea, especially because I've always been intrigued by the idea of sleep paralysis and the Night Hag legends that relate to it.  Thankfully, Dusty isn't a menacing or frightening character like most legends describe.  She's actually quite likable, brave and very trustworthy.  Another character I liked a lot was her best friend Selene, who was loyal and intelligent.  Neither of the love interests really did it for me, but the story had so much more going for it, it didn't need the romance to fall back on.

Along with the exciting and fresh premise, this story also held a wonderful mystery.  I didn't want to put the book down once I began, just because I wanted to find out about the connection that Dusty held to Eli, why they saw the deaths happening in his dreams, who was behind it all and why it was happening in the first place.  Though by the end I predicted a few things, it was such an entertaining journey that left me wanting more.

The Nightmare Affair is a very well-written debut that will keep you on your toes from the start.  The fantasy aspects of the book were done perfectly and I loved how easily the reader can connect with with main character.  Mindee Arnett is an author I will keep a lookout for, because I'm definitely loving what she's come up with so far.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I'm glad that you liked this one! I've heard mixed reviews on it, so I'm actually really not sure about it. Dusty sounds like a good character, but it sucks that the love interests weren't doing it for you! But hey, if it works it works, right? Lovely review, darling! (:

    Megan@The Book Babe