Books Young Adult Fiction Dreaming Anastasia (Dreaming Anastasia #1)

Dreaming Anastasia (Dreaming Anastasia #1)

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0.0
 
4.5 (4)
521   0
Author(s)
Genre(s)
Age Range
14+
Release Date
September 01, 2009
ISBN
1402218176
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What really happened to Anastasia Romanov?

Anastasia Romanov thought she would never feel more alone than when the gunfire started and her family began to fall around her. Surely the bullets would come for her next. But they didn't. Instead, two gnarled old hands reached for her. When she wakes up she discovers that she is in the ancient hut of the witch Baba Yaga, and that some things are worse than being dead.

In modern-day Chicago, Anne doesn't know much about Russian history. She is more concerned about getting into a good college--until the dreams start. She is somewhere else. She is someone else. And she is sharing a small room with a very old woman. The vivid dreams startle her, but not until a handsome stranger offers to explain them does she realize her life is going to change forever. She is the only one who can save Anastasia. But, Anastasia is having her own dreams...

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Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot 
 
4.5  (4)
Characters 
 
N/A  (0)
Writing Style 
 
N/A  (0)
Paced with action and mystery in mind, the story quickly moves beyond the typical teen sighting--average girl notices the exquisite-looking boy--into a realm of magic and dark intrigue, twisting among ancient legends of gypsies where potions and spells are real.

As Anne wonders who this boy is, she dreams of a girl trapped in a strange place and by an eerie power who she'll come to know as Baba Yaga--the witch. The more she dreams the more she realizes the girl is real and she, Anne, is somehow linked to her. Tossing confusion into the mix is Ethan, who's original plan is to convince Anne to fulfill her destiny and save this girl, this Anastasia, but his past brings dangers he didn't foresee as his heart takes more than just a liking to Anne.

Their relationship is volatile at times and soft at others. The getting-to-know-you stage is amped up by the mysteries encroaching on them and the reader can't help but cheer for them.

Preble uses her characters to examine the act of trust and giving of oneself for another. In the end, the one who sacrifices the most doesn't always win. Life is a choice yet a gamble. And in this tale, it's up to the reader to decide who the true winner really is.
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Sheri Larsen Reviewed by Sheri Larsen June 14, 2013
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (10)

Love Beyond Boundaries

Paced with action and mystery in mind, the story quickly moves beyond the typical teen sighting--average girl notices the exquisite-looking boy--into a realm of magic and dark intrigue, twisting among ancient legends of gypsies where potions and spells are real.

As Anne wonders who this boy is, she dreams of a girl trapped in a strange place and by an eerie power who she'll come to know as Baba Yaga--the witch. The more she dreams the more she realizes the girl is real and she, Anne, is somehow linked to her. Tossing confusion into the mix is Ethan, who's original plan is to convince Anne to fulfill her destiny and save this girl, this Anastasia, but his past brings dangers he didn't foresee as his heart takes more than just a liking to Anne.

Their relationship is volatile at times and soft at others. The getting-to-know-you stage is amped up by the mysteries encroaching on them and the reader can't help but cheer for them.

Preble uses her characters to examine the act of trust and giving of oneself for another. In the end, the one who sacrifices the most doesn't always win. Life is a choice yet a gamble. And in this tale, it's up to the reader to decide who the true winner really is.

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The Romanov story is a memorable moment in history that has been told time and time again in pop culture. The story of the mass murder of the tsar line is often told, and more than once has it incorporated the idea that perhaps Anastasia, the youngest of the tsar’s daughters, was never killed. This story has been told so much that the most unique of all of these only came about when an animated bat was involved. That is until Joy Preble’s “Dreaming Anastasia” came along.

While “Dreaming” does incorporate the idea that Anastasia may have survived the Romanov killings, this time it has some plot elements not yet seen in the tale. In Preble’s version, Anastasia has been kept hostage by the witch Baba Yaga in a sort of suspended world in which she does not age. It is up to Anne, a girl who lives in our present day world, to save her from Baba Yaga’s timeless witch hut and allow her to begin living her life anew in the 2000s. In my opinion, Anne is the best part of this new take on Anastasia. While Anastasia’s story is compelling, we have heard some version of her story before. Anne’s life is completely new, and the connections Preble makes between Anne’s life and Anastasia’s are gripping and refreshing to read. Preble’s writing shows that using the bones of a cultural legend doesn’t have to become a repeat of what everyone else has written (or drawn). All it takes is a little imagination to invigorate the story with some enticing new energy.
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Jason Gallaher Reviewed by Jason Gallaher January 21, 2013
Last updated: December 04, 2013
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (106)

Gripping New Take on an Age Old Story

The Romanov story is a memorable moment in history that has been told time and time again in pop culture. The story of the mass murder of the tsar line is often told, and more than once has it incorporated the idea that perhaps Anastasia, the youngest of the tsar’s daughters, was never killed. This story has been told so much that the most unique of all of these only came about when an animated bat was involved. That is until Joy Preble’s “Dreaming Anastasia” came along.

While “Dreaming” does incorporate the idea that Anastasia may have survived the Romanov killings, this time it has some plot elements not yet seen in the tale. In Preble’s version, Anastasia has been kept hostage by the witch Baba Yaga in a sort of suspended world in which she does not age. It is up to Anne, a girl who lives in our present day world, to save her from Baba Yaga’s timeless witch hut and allow her to begin living her life anew in the 2000s. In my opinion, Anne is the best part of this new take on Anastasia. While Anastasia’s story is compelling, we have heard some version of her story before. Anne’s life is completely new, and the connections Preble makes between Anne’s life and Anastasia’s are gripping and refreshing to read. Preble’s writing shows that using the bones of a cultural legend doesn’t have to become a repeat of what everyone else has written (or drawn). All it takes is a little imagination to invigorate the story with some enticing new energy.

Good Points
Refreshingly new take on the Romanov story.
Entertaining new characters that have interesting connections to Anastasia's life.
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Reader reviewed by Margay Justice

What would you do if you started having disturbing, realistic dreams about a tragic figure in Russian history? And if those dreams somehow tied in to the reason why the really cute new guy at your school is following you around and trying to get to know you better? These are the things that Anne Michaelson is forced to endure - the questions she is forced to answer - when her world is changed forever by dreams of Anastasia Romanov and the arrival of the mysterious Ethan. He brings with him mysteries that need to be solved and danger that cannot be avoided, whether Anne wants to or not. And her dreams are key to solving them.

This book was a wonderful compilation of history, magic and mystery that had me guessing from the start.There were twists and turns in there that could easily make you dizzy - if you weren't so wrapped up in the intrigue and elegant prose. Joy Preble does a wonderful job of mixing elements in this story and I was sad when the book was done. I will definitely be on the lookout for her next book.
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
a reader Reviewed by a reader February 14, 2010
#1 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (20052)

An Unsettling Dream Becomes Reality

Reader reviewed by Margay Justice

What would you do if you started having disturbing, realistic dreams about a tragic figure in Russian history? And if those dreams somehow tied in to the reason why the really cute new guy at your school is following you around and trying to get to know you better? These are the things that Anne Michaelson is forced to endure - the questions she is forced to answer - when her world is changed forever by dreams of Anastasia Romanov and the arrival of the mysterious Ethan. He brings with him mysteries that need to be solved and danger that cannot be avoided, whether Anne wants to or not. And her dreams are key to solving them.


This book was a wonderful compilation of history, magic and mystery that had me guessing from the start.There were twists and turns in there that could easily make you dizzy - if you weren't so wrapped up in the intrigue and elegant prose. Joy Preble does a wonderful job of mixing elements in this story and I was sad when the book was done. I will definitely be on the lookout for her next book.

Was this review helpful to you? 
Reader reviewed by Noel Furniss, Teen Demi-Goddess

"A simple revolution. A simple set of murders. My family, destroyed one by one in front of my eyes. Their screams. Their cries for mercy. And a storm in a room where no storm could exist. A thick, black cloud that deepened and swirled and cracked open the ceiling. A giant pair of handsthe same hands that now clutch a cup of sweet teathat closed about me and carried me here. And suddenly, I knew how not simple it all really was.



    Anne is having unusual, reoccurring dreams. Dreams of a little girl in a white, blood spattered dress who watches her family be murdered one by one and is then scooped into oblivion by a giant pair of hands. Shes not too worried, though. What she needs to think about is getting into a good college&
    Ethan has finally found her. The girl who could help him rescue the Grand Duchess Anastasia, imprisoned for all these years by the witch Baba Yaga. Now if only he could convince Anne to accept her destiny, to accept him&
    Soon Anne wont have a choice. Meeting Ethan sets events into motion, events that have been waiting over a hundred years to finally play out. Can Anne accept her powers, and her destiny, in time to rescue Anastasia? What if she cant? Theres just something about Ethan she cant quite trust&
    Both Anne and Ethan will have to work together, put aside their feelings, and accept their pasts to defeat an ancient, powerful magic.



    Joy Preble has given readers an intriguing tale of magic, tragedy, love, and betrayal. She opens up the question: What really did happen to Anastasia? Did she die with her family, or did she escape somehow? Be prepared to fall into this story; your heart will ache for the characters and what theyve suffered, especially Anastasia. Lovers of fantasy and romance will not be disappointed, and a sudden twist at the end will leave readers eyes wide and mouths agape. Dreaming Anastasia is a wondrous novel, informative and enchanting. Ive always been fascinated with the tale of Czar Nicholas and his family, and this novel gives me a whole new viewpoint than that of history or the charming cartoon movie. Dreaming Anastasia will most definitely be gracing my shelves from now on.

Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
a reader Reviewed by a reader September 05, 2009
#1 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (20052)

Dreaming Enchantment

Reader reviewed by Noel Furniss, Teen Demi-Goddess

"A simple revolution. A simple set of murders. My family, destroyed one by one in front of my eyes. Their screams. Their cries for mercy. And a storm in a room where no storm could exist. A thick, black cloud that deepened and swirled and cracked open the ceiling. A giant pair of handsthe same hands that now clutch a cup of sweet teathat closed about me and carried me here. And suddenly, I knew how not simple it all really was.



    Anne is having unusual, reoccurring dreams. Dreams of a little girl in a white, blood spattered dress who watches her family be murdered one by one and is then scooped into oblivion by a giant pair of hands. Shes not too worried, though. What she needs to think about is getting into a good college&
    Ethan has finally found her. The girl who could help him rescue the Grand Duchess Anastasia, imprisoned for all these years by the witch Baba Yaga. Now if only he could convince Anne to accept her destiny, to accept him&
    Soon Anne wont have a choice. Meeting Ethan sets events into motion, events that have been waiting over a hundred years to finally play out. Can Anne accept her powers, and her destiny, in time to rescue Anastasia? What if she cant? Theres just something about Ethan she cant quite trust&
    Both Anne and Ethan will have to work together, put aside their feelings, and accept their pasts to defeat an ancient, powerful magic.



    Joy Preble has given readers an intriguing tale of magic, tragedy, love, and betrayal. She opens up the question: What really did happen to Anastasia? Did she die with her family, or did she escape somehow? Be prepared to fall into this story; your heart will ache for the characters and what theyve suffered, especially Anastasia. Lovers of fantasy and romance will not be disappointed, and a sudden twist at the end will leave readers eyes wide and mouths agape. Dreaming Anastasia is a wondrous novel, informative and enchanting. Ive always been fascinated with the tale of Czar Nicholas and his family, and this novel gives me a whole new viewpoint than that of history or the charming cartoon movie. Dreaming Anastasia will most definitely be gracing my shelves from now on.

Was this review helpful to you? 
 
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