Nightmares are real
But being brave and facing them takes all the power out of them.
WHAT if your nightmares are real? And what if they can come into the real world?
This is the fear that 12- year- old Charlie Laird lives with in Nightmares. Ever since his father remarried, and Charlie, his younger brother Jack and their father moved into the purple mansion that his stepmother lives in, Charlie has been having terrible nightmares.
And they’re all about a warty, green- faced witch and her huge cat threatening to eat him. Charlie is so terrified that he fights sleep by drinking coffee and stacks boxes to block the door to his room.
He figures that there must be a connection between his nightmares, the purple mansion and his stepmother Charlotte DeChant, who, he’s convinced, is evil. It doesn’t help that she runs a business called Hazel’s Herbarium, with lots of witch- like potions ( at least in Charlie’s opinion) always brewing.
He knows that his stepmonster is a witch but he has no way to prove it, until a series of events lead him to the Netherworld, the place where Nightmares live. What ensues is a fight to survive, a few rescue attempts and Charlie facing his fears ... although his fears may not be what he thought they were.
Nightmares! is the first book in a new series by Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller. If the former’s name sounds familiar, it’s because Segel is more famous for his on- screen work as Marshall Eriksen in How I Met Your Mother.
Based on Segel’s own night terrors, Nightmares explores the concept of nightmares, revealing that they are a manifestation of our deepest fears. Nightmares prey on those fears, making them bigger and badder than they actually are.
The novel could have very easily been a cliché, but Segel and Miller’s writing style successfully puts it above that. It’s simultaneously scary and funny, while still dealing with some pretty heavy issues. The characters are really likeable, and relatable. What also stands out is how Segel and Miller have delved into the complexity of loss, love and relationships. Charlie’s relationship with his father, brother, stepmother and friends all come under the microscope, and when he faces his fears, it brings clear focus to his relationship with his late mother.
Nightmares! The Sleepwalker Tonic is the second book in the series and continues the adventures of Charlie and his family and friends. Having closed the portal to the Netherworld and stopped the