Sigh. I really enjoyed this book and yet it falls so short of what it could've been.
It all comes down to there being too many elements and not enough book and worldbuilding. With the amount of elements that are introduced this book should've been for adults, and significantly longer.
3.5 rounded up.
This was inspired by Edgar Allen Poe's "A Masque of Red Death" and it was ok. The cover grabbed me from the get go but as I read, I just felt meh about the world building and writing itself. Just not my cup of tea but not bad. The dual POV was cool as well as the concept.
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for granting me free access to the advanced digital copy of this book.
A wonderful take on The Masque of Red Death by Edgar Allen Poe, this is a read that discusses plagues, survivors and who do you really need with you in order to survive.
This book is a yes if you like some horror elements, an examination of the treatment of jewish people in times of plague and aren't hoping for the romance to be front and center.
This book is a no if you don't like blood and some violence because it will be found here. Or if it's summer - read this in the season it was meant for!
Here is the set up: the Mori roja has been spreading for years taking out everyone who comes in it's path. To protect themselves from the plague the king and his daughters - including Imogen our protagonist are staying locked in the castle. However, it's been years - food is running out and Imogen wants out. But everything isn't as it seems. Princess Imogen holds a secret and time is running out for her.
Elsewhere Nico lives out of the castle amongst some survivors. Serving Lord Craine he starts to wonder if surviving the plague was the only danger he has to face. .
My thoughts: This is a great fall/winter book. it's spooky, it's gothic, you have a clock that keeps chiming 3. I appreciated the characters and how they interacted together. Nico and Imogen having a slow burn and getting to know each other and sharing themselves was a good build up. It didn't feel too much like a "oh I guess we have to end up together now." nor was there too much love triangle nonsense happening though that definitely could have gone that way.
I love how Rutherford ratcheted up the tension throughout the novel. You get the hints Nico gets as you start to sense that something isn't necessarily right here but you're to scared to really accept what's wrong. The climatic events of the story were well done. Things were tied up but not so perfectly that I was happy with everything. (In fact there is still one character who....ooooooh)
I look forward to reading more from this author!
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
If you like your atmosphere a little dark and gothic. Open this book.
If you like plot where they are going to save the world from zombie/vampires. Open this book.
But you must like both. If one of the above is not your cup of tea. Set this book aside. This book has woven these two (atmosphere/plot zombie/vampire) so intricately together that each is integral to your enjoyment and the overall tone of the story.
Honestly ....I put off reading this one for much too long. And I really shouldn't have. I was interested in the ARC and got approved....and left this sitting on my shelf. I was hesitant. While it sounded intriguing....I then heard some great book hype reviews. And little me got scared, because I rarely get access to top -notch books. So I thought, gosh what if I don't like it. If you like Erin A Craig - you might like this book.
This it pulled me in from the beginning. There are only three things I would want to change. A) The title - we need to make that better to give us the real vibe of this book, the title is so bland after having read it B) Magic, I did want a little bit of fairytale/gothic-y/creepy magic to make an appearance, and none did - so I was somewhat disappointed C) The ending - I know most people will like it but I was hoping for a little bit of a horror twist, and was somewhat disappointed
Overall a great read and Mara is going on my author list! Can't wait to start into her back list books
To Inkyard Press and Mara Rutherford - and, of course, NetGalley - thank you for the ARC. I am soo sorry I put of reading it for so long. Shame on me!
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the review copy of this title.
I really loved this story.
I love this authors way of writing. This is a dark gothic tale. So, while its not super fast paced, it's not supposed to be, it does draw you through the story in a very compelling way.
I loved the Jewish representation in a fantasy book, something we don't get enough of. The plot was well executed and full of twists.
I would have liked the ending to not feel rushed. But, overall I still highly recommend this book!
This book just snuck up on me and I don't think I was ready for the way it suddenly had me just grasped in it's thrall. Mara Rutherford is one gifted storyteller and the characters and plot were so imaginative and dynamic, I couldn't put this book down, even for a moment.
Mara Rutherford knocked it out of the park with this book. It was so, so good. I could not put it down. I can't wait to read more from Rutherford.
Forgot to review this one upon release but truly loved it. Bought a copy and Rutherford is now perhaps an auto-buy author. Haunting and wonderful.
Talk about great opening lines! "Eldridge Hall was a castle built on lies."
The gothic fantasy setting is chilling and immersive. As a fan of Poe, the Prince Prospero hook got me from page one.
The characters are deeply moving. I cannot help but root for them. Even in their darkest moments.
There's a not-so-subtle anti-racist message running throughout. The weight of prejudice and fear covers everyone in the story, and the author deftly urges the reader to push back against racism in the real world while the fantasy world struggles to find its way. (Don't skip the author's note.)
A refreshing tale with gothic imagery and fantastic prose. This storyline was very interesting and right from the get go instills the reader with beautiful imagery. This tale takes inspiration from Edgar Allen poes “The masque of the red death” and it shows throughout the story. It also reminded me of the goose girl fairy tale by the brothers Grimm.
I was intrigued from the first chapter and even more so after learning about the plague and switch up of the princesses. The different povs complimented each other well as did the fantasy elements. The romance storyline was tasteful and fit its young adult rating and I think it was all very well done. Would recommend for young fantasy lovers and those that want to dip their toes into gothic story elements and tales.
Thank you, Inkyard and NetGalley, for the chance to read this book in exchange of an honest review.
Princess Imogen of Goslind has lived a sheltered life for three years in her castle, protected by the plague in her kingdom, hiding her own secret. But as the king Stuart slowly descends into madness, she's forced to reveal it.
Nico Mott did enjoyed a comfortable life, before the plague took everything from him and, after being saved by Lord Crane, now he's forced to own his silence too. When he's send out to search for more survivors in the castle, he meets the princess who is fleeing away. In order to survive the nightmares, they will have to join forces and navigate lies and secrets.
A multitude of dreams is a unique book, incredibly atmospheric, intense and filled with unexpected horrors.
The writing style weaves a fascinating story with intriguing characters, with their own secrets, plots and lies to tell in order to protect themselves and a story set in the aftermath of a terrible plague and its consequences. Mara Rutherford wrote a brilliant and captivating story and I loved every single page of it.
This was interesting, This author really does create something different in a genre that is much the same. I enjoyed it but I do not think the target audience will find it as interesting as I do.
I did not realize that this book was a loose retelling of the Poe story the mask of the red death, which definitely makes for an interesting read. I loved the world and the creepy concept of a plague and the infected being reborn, but I am always a sucker for a good zombie book (or in this case zombie vampire-ish?).
I was not really into the romance aspect of the story, I would have been perfectly fine if it did not exist to be honest. Both characters were interesting and well thought out as individuals (the story is dual narrated by both main characters) but the last fourth of the book pushed them into a meeting and then romance that felt forced and unnecessary. Keep in mind I am sure others will love them together but I enjoyed them both independently and doing their thing. Overall this was an interesting standalone YA fantasy romance with a solid plot line but a little bit too rushed ending and relationship.
This was such a lushly atmospheric read, I want to immediately delve back in. Rutherford has a real way with words that captivates you so completely you don’t ever want to leave the world she built. Although it was short, I feel as if it did exactly what it set out to do with the amount it was given, as that would be my only gripe about this book. Overall, a quick and enjoyable book that was perfect for spooky vibes.
thank you to netgalley for the advanced reading copy. I really enjoyed this and will be getting copies for my shop.
A MULTITUDE OF DREAMS is Mara Rutherford's first adult fantasy. I love Rutherford's other fantasy books so I was very excited for this standalone - Rutherford is prolific at prose. This is a reimagining of Edgar Allan Poe’s The Masque of the Red Death (one of my fav Poe's stories). This is the story of a Princess with a secret locked up with the entire royal court to avoid the Plague ravaging the country..... Now, the King is most certainly Mad and four years have passed. On the other side of the country, a plague survivor struggles in a country where the majority of the population has perished. Mix in some paranormal activity and romance - and you have a great plot.
- Jewish Representation
- Gothic Fantasy
- Secret Identity
- Paranormal Activity
where a mad king locks up his subjects within the castle walls while a plague ravages the kingdom. It’s the story of a princess and a grave robber meeting in the most unlikely of circumstances, with Jewish representation, romance, and some major gothic vibes. I
A Multitude of Dreams by Mara Rutherford is a retelling of Edgar Allan Poe's The Masque of the Red Death. Although I have never read the original story I'm always interested in retellings that put a spin on things.
This story follows a secretly Jewish girl, Seraphina, who has been impersonating and living as Princess Imogen for the last four years since the plague struck, after being taken from her family. Living among the royal family as if it were her own, everyone inside the manor refuses to mention or discuss what the conditions outside might be after so many years locked away behind boarded-up windows and doors.
Nico, a grave digger working for a strange man named Crane, along with a couple of other servants are sent out toward the royal manor, Eldridge Hall, in search of any Plague survivors who may still be quarantined inside.
After Nico manages to sneak inside the manor during a masquerade birthday party under the guise of Prince Martin, he stumbles into a meeting with the mysterious Princess Imogen. Secrets quickly come to light as the condition of the outside world is uncovered and a children's horrifying nursery rhyme is revealed to be more than just a tale.
The concept for this book was really interesting and I did enjoy my time reading about the Reborn as well as the different blood types. (Immunity and immaculates) I was hoping for a little more darkness and maybe a more in-depth writing style.
I did have some trouble with the logical aspect of things. After all, it's kind of hard to believe that a man wouldn't recognize his own daughter, right? That part just kept bothering me as I was reading through the story. I also respect the addition of the Jewish nature within this story but honestly, there wasn't enough of that aspect for it to seem necessary. I wish we would have touched more on that, or just left it alone completely.
I have to say Nico was probably my favorite character, I found him endearing with how bashful and modest he is. So near the ending was very cute and probably my favorite part of the whole book. We are left slightly open-ended with mention of future plans but no finalized wrap-up of what happens to everyone and what the situation moving forward was going to be, which was a bit of a bummer because I would have liked to see where everyone ended up in the end. Was a pretty okay story and was enjoyable for the most part.
One of the rare gems that grabs you from the first page and doesn't let you out of its grip until the last word! I couldn't put it down--the characters, the story, the mystery, the haunting sense of something terrible coming that creeps up on you midway through and builds and builds and BUILDS.
Truly, this is one you don't want to miss!
(Thank you to NetGalley and to the publishers for providing me with a digital copy of this book for review.)