An exhilarating, awe-inspiring debut from a master storyteller writing for children for the first time, perfect for fans of Philip Pullman, Katherine Rundell and Eva Ibbotson.
When Rachel and Robert are passed a stolen book by their librarian father, they have to go on the run and protect it at all costs. With their father captured and everyone hunting for the Book, they must uncover its secrets and track down the final, missing page.
But the cruel and calculating Charles Malstain is on their trail. When the children discover the astonishing, magical truth about the Book, they resolve to do everything in their power to stop it falling into his hands. For if it does, he could rule forever.
Step inside the pages of an immortal adventure and discover a truly unforgettable journey of wonder, courage and magic...
David Farr is one of the UK's leading screenwriters and directors for film, TV and theatre. In 2009, he was appointed Associate Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company, where his productions of The Winter's Tale, King Lear and The Homecoming all opened to critical acclaim. David is known for his work on Spooks and his 2016 BBC adaptation of John Le Carré's The Night Manager, starring Hugh Laurie and Tom Hiddleston. He completed his first feature film, Hanna, in 2009, and has since adapted it into a hugely successful series for Amazon Prime.
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“Storytelling at its very best, at its most magnificent - bold, brave and brilliant! An utterly enthralling adventure about the power of courage and imagination to save the world”
Sophie Anderson, author of The Girl Who Speaks Bear
“A stunner of a debut. Warm, witty and unputdownable.”
Peter Bunzl, author of The Cogheart Adventures
Dear friend, the hunt for The Book of Stolen Dreams is on. Be quick, the Book is a wanted item, look carefully, look closely, and most importantly, if your moral compass is intact – use it – it will lead you to important places and more important people. Be brave.
Step into the pages of an immortal adventure...
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 19 members
When things are tough, you want those around you to be people you can trust. In the world we encounter at the start of this wondrous story, that is not necessarily the case. Under the rule of Charles Malstain life is dreary, and anyone who does not do as he requests is made to disappear. This is a time of dark secrets, where family are suspicious of each other and where things are about to get worse. We don’t know why this has happened, but Farr immediately sets up a tense and unsettling atmosphere. We are introduced to our protagonists, Robert and Rachel Klein, when they accompany their father to the lending library where he works. This journey is done at night, and nobody is told about it so we know it is dangerous. All we know is that it has something to do with The Book of Stolen Dreams that Felix Klein steals - rumours are that it is scheduled to be destroyed - and charges his children with protecting until they can hand it over to a man called Solomon. The children escape, but have to watch their father beaten by Malstain’s forces. They are subject to intimidation in their home as those under Malstain search desperately for the Book that the children vow to protect, though they don’t really know why. As we follow Rachel and Robert in their task, they are placed in extreme peril. They suffer in the way that only young children in stories can. The odds are against them. They are pitched into a battle they might not win…but their determination to do the right thing and their bravery makes for a gripping story. Along the way we meet a host of characters - at both ends of the spectrum. Malstain is a shadowy villain, orchestrating terrible deeds for his own selfish reasons. Opposing him are a motley crew, and not all are guaranteed to do the right thing when asked. From the outset this was a book that delighted. Due for release in September 2021 I can’t wait to see the buzz it generates, and I’m grateful to NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to read it early.
The only existence siblings, Rachel and Robert, have ever known has been a dreary one under the rule of Charles Malstain. Their parents remember a different time, however. Perhaps that was why their father did something reckless that got him taken away from them. Perhaps that was why their mother, on her deathbed, told them to fight for justice and their happiness. It becomes hard to remember what happiness even is though when you are far from your home and your family, and feel helpless against the tyrant ruining your country. This might just be one of the best middle grade, adventure, fantasy stories that I have ever read! Rachel was the primary protagonist and she revealed the harsh rule all lived under. I loved exploring the politics and geography of the world, with her as the reader's guide. She was plucky and feisty and brave but also unashamed to feel vulnerable, afraid, and helpless. She worked through these latter feelings and became the perfect eyes in which to view this world through. Her brother, Robert, was also provided with chapters set from his perspective. This was necessary as they remained apart for much of the book but his actions were still important ones. He was initially involved in more scheming and so I enjoyed learning about the plans for Malstain's demise from him. The magic that was uncovered proved fascinating. I loved its slow introduction in the book and loved learning how it impacted the lives of these children. David Farr integrated it seamlessly into the story and I was engaged in all the different aspects that combined to make this a fascinating and fast-paced story.
This is an amazing book that is probably one of the best I have read this year. There are elements that feel as if it could be set in Germany or Russia in the 1930s, because of the oppression by a truly evil dictator, yet we have the element of magic that is brought to the story by the written dreams that are found in the book. of dreams. This is definitely a book that can be read more that once and it leaves a lasting impression on the reader. Truly a five star read.
There are not many books I’ve read that contain a story as beautiful as The Book of Stolen Dreams. I was utterly mesmerised by the writing of David Farr - captivated from the first word to the last. I was bewitched, enthralled and every synonym in between. Contained within the pages of The Book of Stolen Dreams is something truly special. A tale of hope, of fighting against the odds, of love and loss. It’s so much more than an adventure story, more than fantasy: it is a work of art in word form. To put simply: I adored this book. I loved the premise, the characters, the narration style. It was unpredictable, fast-paced and utterly unique. I cannot recommend it highly enough - it made my heart sing and I will remember it long after the last page has been closed. Thank you to NetGalley for the ARC; I will be first in the queue to buy a copy of this breath-taking book upon its publication and eagerly await more sublime offerings from the undeniable talent that is David Farr.