Monday, June 23, 2014

Dream Student by by J.J. DiBenedetto

Dream Student

By J.J. DiBenedetto

Blurb: What would you do if you could see other people’s dreams? If you could watch their hidden fantasies and uncover their deepest, darkest secrets…without them ever knowing?

Sara Barnes is about to find out. She thought that all she had to worry about was final exams, Christmas shopping and deciding whether she likes the cute freshman in the next dorm who’s got a crush on her.

But when she starts seeing dreams that aren’t hers, she learns more than she ever wanted to know about her friends, her classmates…and a strange, terrifying man whose dreams could get Sara killed.

“Dream Student” is the thrilling first installment of the Dreams series.

Genres: New Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Mystery 

Publication Date: March 18, 2013

Pages: 287

Series: Dreams (book 1)

My Rating: 2.5 stars

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Being a relative newbie to the new adult genre, I had honestly no idea what to expect from Dream Student. The verdict? It wasn't bad, but it wasn't fabulous. It still had a couple Young Adult genre cliches; I had been kind of hoping that I'd escape those, but nope. The plot was not too shabby. This book had enough to keep my interest going, but it never hooked me completely.

The thing that I really liked about this book was the mystery/paranormal aspect. When done right, these genres are super interesting. I didn't see the big 'reveal' of who did it coming. All together, it made for a really enthralling story.

The MC, Sara, at times could annoy me. She describes herself as plain; she thinks her best friend is prettier than she is; she falls head over heels with a guy that she just saw at some club; in short, a lot of the things I don't like about Young Adult protagonists I found in Sara. Bummer. She got better as the story progressed, which was good. Still, she never got a true personality; she was just kind of a tool for the story. That's why I could never really connect with her.

I didn't like the whole insta-love. It seemed like a bit of a copout. I mean, it was extremely quick, and that's coming from someone who has read some absolutley deplorable insta-lovey romances. There wasn't a getting to know the person stage,which I always love, and personally think makes a story much more realistic; Brian and Sara's relationship goes from 'random strangers' to 'soulmates' in basically one night. (as anyone who has watched Frozen knows, falling in love in one night doesn't work.)

Lastly, the book seemed to focus a lot on Sara's relationship with Brian, and it sometimes would stray away from the main storyline. Another pet peeve of mine from the YA genre. I think I could have liked the romance a bit more if the focus wasn't on it so much.

Are there good parts to this book? Yes. Are there bad parts to this book? Yes. I think whether people like this or not is going to be based on what they value in a story. If characters are the most important aspect of a story for them, maybe it's not a book I would recommend. If plotlines are, then maybe it would be. It really depends.


  1. That title is really intriguing....And that is a scary power. One that I would DEFINITELY not want to have. :)

    But I'm thinking probably not going to read this. As soon as you mentioned insta-love and the romance taking over the story *backs away quickly* Not a fan of those things lol.

    1. Lol me neither! It was such a let-down for me, because like you said, her power was really intriguing to read about. :/ The story could have been a lot better without any romance at all, honestly.


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