This review can also be read on my blog, Stumptown Books
Although this was a quick and easy read, it was still interesting and I read it in only two sittings. De Lint himself has classified The Dreaming Place
as more of a novella, as it is only 134 pages long, but it is a nice little introductory to his creation of Newford. This was the first book de Lint wrote that took place in Newford, but now it is classified as the second because of the recommended reading order
. It is considered young adult, along with only one other Newford book, so this is a good place to start if you're unsure about some of De Lint's more...graphic tendencies.
A lot that goes on is, unfortunately, troped and stereotypical. This is why I only gave it 3 stars, as the characters just aren't that original, but that is to be expected for a young adult novel. Traveling to another world is always cool though, and that is, as per usual for de Lint's work, the best part of the story. The two main characters, Ashley and Nina, go through logical character progression even if it has been done before, and there's not a bunch of sidelines or digressions to lose the reader's interest. I surprised myself when I discovered I was worried about what was going to happen to them.
This is never going to be a life shattering read, but it is quick and interesting, and a must if you want to delve into the world of Newford.