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wealhtheow

wealhtheow

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The Theory of the Leisure Class (Modern Library Classics)
Thorstein Veblen, Alan Wolfe
In Dreams (Volume 1) - J. Sterling Katherine Johns has shiny straight hair, adorable freckles on her nose, and strangely intense dreams. Even though she only just started college, she's already attracted the attention of the most sought-after man at school, hockey-star Cooper Donovon. But how can she concentrate on him when she's dreaming of her soul-mate?

It turns out that her dream boyfriend is none other than her new bff&roommate Taylor's brother Austin, who died 2 years ago. Katherine has to choose between her dead soul-mate and her live hottie boyfriend. I was annoyed at how easily everyone accepted Katherine's stories of dreaming about a dead guy. Not a single person tells her she's crazy, or even mistaken--they all immediately take her at her word. She doesn't even have to prove it by giving info only Austin would know. She just tells Austin's family and ex-girlfriend that his angel/ghost is visiting her in dreams, and they all accept it but are completely disinterested in how. Why is no one curious about the dead dude? No one wonders if he can tell them anything about death or the afterlife, no one wonders about whether other dead loved ones are hanging around too. Supposedly his death devastated his family, but not one of them wish they could see him, too. They're only interested in how Katherine and Austin's romance is going. Spiritualists and mediums get wealth and fame through vague, obvious pronouncements about dead people, but no one is interested in the fact that apparently ghosts are all around us, watching us and peeping into our dreams?

Putting aside the huge problem that the plot itself is completely unrealistic, the characters and writing don't help. The tense shifts every few sentences, sometimes the POV switches within a single paragraph. Grammar errors run rampant. The dialog is like someone taped 400 hours of CW programming and then selected the most boring, meaningless sentences possible and strung them together. The characters are too bland to even count as stereotypes. They're all handsome and nice; if they're a man, they're also muscled and good at hockey. That's the extent of their characterization. The weirdest throwback tropes are in here, too: there's an Italian restauranteur who speaks-ah like-ah this-ah, each of the characters' mothers are described as being in the kitchen (followed by the maddening phrase "of course") and half a chapter is devoted to telling us that picnics are not manly and that men should be manly and therefore not like picnics. (I have no idea where the author got that particular idea.) It is, overall, the most boring, bland, and just plain bad book that I've read in months.