Book Review: A Dream within A Dream

11 Jul

Trudi Coffey only realizes that she hasn’t seen Samuel Hill in weeks when the FBI shows up asking questions about him. After a strange encounter with an armed man demanding her help and an attack by a member of the Boston mob looking for someone named Dream, Trudi manages to find Samuel–or rather, he finds her. He’s made some pretty powerful enemies, but right now his full attention is on protecting Dream from the mob. Because Dream has something they want — the map to the location of artwork stolen from the Gardener Museum during the infamous 1990 heist.

With danger closing in from all sides, Trudi and Samuel will have to call on all of their allies to keep Dream safe and discover the identity of the people who have been hunting down Samuel. The real questions are whom can they trust? And who will make it out of this thing alive?

Mike Nappa is an entertainment journalist at, as well as a bestselling and award-winning author with more than one million books sold worldwide. When he was a kid, the stories of Edgar Allen Poe scared him silly. Today he owns everything Poe ever wrote. A former fiction acquisitions editor, Mike earned his MA in English literature and now writes full-time. He is the author of Annabel Lee and The Raven.

Melissa Kosci is a fourth-degree black belt in and certified instructor of Songahm Taekwondo. In her day job as a commercial property manager, she secretly notes personal quirks and funny situations, ready to tweak them into colorful additions for her books. She and Corey, her husband of twenty years, live in Florida, where they do their best not to melt in the sun.




My Impressions:

I have been waiting for another Coffey and Hill mystery for a while — a LONG while! Both Annnabel Lee and The Raven made my best of the best lists the year I read them. In A Dream within A Dream, Trudi and Samuel are back better than ever as they navigate the known and very much unknown of a twisting, turning case. If you like lots of action with your suspense, then this book is a must-read.

Main characters Trudi and Samuel have a lot of history between them, some of it great, some not so much. Ex-spouses, they have become friends despite the mistakes and betrayals between them. In A Dream within A Dream they are thrown together as multiple foes, new and old, attack. I really like Trudi and Samuel. They seem very real despite some their superhero-esque qualities. These two have skills! They are adept at reading people and situations, and their hand-to-hand combat is way above average. I suspect co-author Melissa Kosci had a lot to do with writing those scenes. As I said, there is a lot of action, but there is also a lot of intelligent planning as well. Smart moves keep the two alive. The book is told from multiple points of view — third person past tense for Trudi and Samuel and first person present for the other main character, Dream. Dream is a wounded character whose perceptions are tainted by trauma and blocked memories. But he is the key to everything. All seemingly unrelated threads trace back to him. This novel really made me think — a true puzzler. The settings of the novel are Boston and Atlanta. Atlanta is Trudi’s home base, and I enjoyed recognizing all the landmarks mentioned in the book. My son lives in the same neighborhood as Trudi’s office! The Boston setting was a treat as well, since it brought back memories of a fun weekend in that historic city. Book nerds will also like the references to Edgar Allen Poe and his works. The spiritual thread is very subtle, but powerful. I won’t go into the details — spoilers you know — but when you read it you will have a wow moment.

I loved A Dream within A Dream and look forward to more books in the series. There is a BIG twist at the end that better be addressed sooner rather than later! 😉

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

(Thanks to Revell for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)




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