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Review: In An Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire

Hey all, Dani here.

Happy book birthday to Seanan McGuire’s newest release in the Wayward Children series! This is such an awesome series of novellas, and I’m glad that once again I was able to be approved for an early copy thanks to the publisher and NetGalley. As with every time I post up a NetGalley review, I have to state that receiving this early copy has not influenced my rating or review in any way.

Today is also my 500th post on this blog…which wow. I can’t believe I’ve written up that many posts in the past few years. When I started this blog back in January 2016, I never imagined that I would be able to keep it running for this long, or that I would meet so many awesome book bloggers/friends in the process. Thank you all for joining me on this journey, and I look forward to seeing what happens in the next 500 posts and beyond!

Anyway, let’s just jump into the review.

In An Absent Dream


This is the story of a very serious young girl who would rather study and dream than become a respectable housewife and live up to the expectations of the world around her. As well she should.

When she finds a doorway to a world founded on logic and reason, riddles and lies, she thinks she’s found her paradise. Alas, everything costs at the goblin market, and when her time there is drawing to a close, she makes the kind of bargain that never plays out well.

For anyone . . .

My Thoughts

Rating: 4 stars

This particular installment in the series follows Katherine Lundy, who we met in the first novella. She is Eleanor’s second-in-command, and is a lot older than she appears. With this installment we get to see The Goblin Market, the portal world that Lundy visits on multiple occasions.

The novella gives us pretty much equal time with Lundy in The Goblin Market as it does in the “real world” and so we get a nice feel of Lundy’s life and experiences in both. And what I loved is that from the first time we followed Lundy into the market, I had the same logical yet magical, beautiful yet dangerous, feelings that I experienced when I read the poem “The Goblin Market.”

Seanan McGuire is such a clever storyteller, and I have found each one of these novellas to be an interesting exploration of these many many portal worlds.

And honestly, I enjoyed Lundy as a character. Her quiet, lonely, and bookish demeanor in the “real world” wonderfully counterbalanced the relationships she developed in The Goblin Market. It was interesting to see the differences between her experiences at school and with her family in the “real world,” and her time with the Archivist and Moon in The Goblin Market. Also, all the talk of Vincent’s meat pies made me hungry.

Oh, and can I say that I actually somewhat enjoyed the fact that we’d get references to adventures and quests Lundy went on in The Goblin Market that we didn’t get to follow her on? It was cool considering the novella length of the story. Understandably we can’t follow the characters to everything they do. But I also would have been okay if this one had been a little longer so we could join Lundy’s quests.

The one thing to remember with The Goblin Market is the rules. Because in a logic and reason based portal world, the rules are everything.

Rule One : Ask for nothing
Rule Two : Names have power
Rule Three : Always give fair value

I hope that there are more Wayward Children novellas to come, because each one has been a delight.

Where to Buy

You can pick up your own copy from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-million, Book Depository, or your local indie bookstore.

6 thoughts on “Review: In An Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire”

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