Tuesday, November 10, 2015

War for the Waking World YA Litfuse Review

Because my oldest loves to read, and has similar taste to mine, I end up reading a fair amount of YA books that tend towards feminine interest (although much of it is not biased towards either gender). Wayne Thomas Batson is a new to me author, who just released the third book of his Dreamtreaders series, and his books will attract readers male and female both, that enjoy reading the fantasy genre. I received a paperback copy of the book from Litfuse publicity for review purposes. I also received access to e-versions of the 1st two books in the series, which was a help.

Have you ever had a nightmare, but upon waking, it was so *real* that it took some time for you to discover that it was nothing but a dream?  What if the world of dreams actually seeped into reality? 

A bit about the book from the publishers: 
About the book: 
The War for the Waking World
 (Thomas Nelson, October 2015)

Would you be willing to fight for your dreams?

Fifteen-year-old Archer Keaton has the ability to enter and explore his dreams. He is a Dreamtreader, one of three selected from each generation. Their mission: to protect the waking world from the Nightmare Lord who dwells beyond the Slumber Gate. But as Archer's dreams become more dangerous and threatening, so too does his waking life.

In this fast-paced conclusion to the exciting fantasy trilogy, the dream world and the waking world bleed into each other when a rift is formed between the two. People in the real world suddenly find their waking lives resemble their wildest dreams. Now it's up to Archer and his fellow Dreamtreaders to race to reverse the rift before too much damage is done and to battle Archer's ex-best friend, Kara, who sits on the throne of the Nightmare Lord. Kara is building an army of her own. Will Archer be strong enough to stand against her?

Purchase a copy: 

 About the author: 
Wayne Thomas Batson is an American writer. He has been married to his wife, Mary Lu, for seventeen years and has four children. He currently works as a teacher at Folly Quarter Middle School teaching sixth grade English language arts and is the youngest of four children. His most recent series, Dreamtreaders published by Thomas Nelson Inc (2014), is a modern-day paranormal YA adventure dealing with the subject of dreams.

Find Wayne online: 

My take on War for the Waking World 

War for the Waking World is a novel rooted in the fantasy of dreams and nightmares, and the merging of the temporal world with the dream world. The hero is something of an "every day" guy in the real world (his exclamation of "Snot-buckets!" isn't my favorite thing...) but in the dream world he is one of only three Dreamtreaders~ individuals charged with keeping the two worlds from colliding, and not allowing a burgeoning Rift to wreak havoc on everything.

I haven't read all of the previous books, but I would suggest that it would be good to start at the beginning, with Dream Treaders Book One, then Search for the Shadow Key, before reading War for the Waking World if possible. While War for the Waking World *could* be read alone, the story lines do build on one another. The books start a little abruptly. I was convinced I needed to read the 1st book in the series first, after starting 
War for the Waking World because the action was so precipitous, but Dream Treaders starts the same way, dropping you right into the story. I believe it is a device of the author, since waking from a dream is sometimes quite abrupt as well. 

It is an intriguing concept, dreams that become reality (in a nightmarish sort of way, vs a "live your dreams" sort of way). I don't recommend this book for a reader who is prone to nightmares... it could cause a few more of its own ~ there is some violence, and graphic descriptions of nightmarish monsters, as decisions in dreams/nightmares lead to consequences in the real world. 

However, for others, it is a creative read with a grounding in faith and character. Our hero (Archer) isn't perfect, but his character grows as he is used to fulfill a high calling~ Just being a Dreamtreader requires selflessness, courage, and persistence, as he fights for humanity's peace of mind and life.

As C. S. Lewis said, 

“Since it is so likely that (children) will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage. Otherwise you are making their destiny not brighter but darker.”  

I believe this is true for children and teens and adults. We all benefit from "Story" that is grounded in heroic character. This enhances an awareness of right and wrong, black and white, and an ability to parse the gray of life, making wise decisions in a split second.
Archer makes mistakes, just like we do, but even through the mistakes, he is still one chosen to help save the world (just like Moses, David, and Peter are unlikely heros in their human-ness). 

A great story for both teen boys and girls! If you'd like more insight into the book, visit http://litfusegroup.com/author/wtbatson.


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