02 March 2013

Joint Review: The Nightmare Affair by Mindee Arnett

Title:  The Nightmare Affair
Author:  Mindee Arnett
File type:  hardcover
Release date:  March 5th, 2013
Genre:  YA, paranormal, magic

Sixteen-year-old Dusty Everhart breaks into houses late at night, but not because she’s a criminal. No, she’s a Nightmare.
Being the only Nightmare at Arkwell Academy, a boarding school for magickind, and living in the shadow of her mother’s infamy, is hard enough. But when Dusty sneaks into Eli Booker’s house, things get a whole lot more complicated. He’s hot, which means sitting on his chest and invading his dreams couldn’t get much more embarrassing. But it does. Eli is dreaming of a murder.
Then Eli’s dream comes true.
Now Dusty has to follow the clues—both within Eli’s dreams and out of them—to stop the killer before more people turn up dead. And before the killer learns what she’s up to and marks her as the next target.

The Nightmare Affair was one my list of top 5 most anticipated debut novels this year. Ever since I read the blurb I knew I wanted to read it because I've never read a book about a real Nightmare. Dusty invades other people's dreams in order to feed. I didn't explain it right but once you start reading it, you'll get it. And look at that wonderful cover! 

I did not expect it to be such a fun book. I thought it would be more dark and mysterious but I prefer it the way it was because I don't think I would like it if it turned out to be spooky since I read plenty of horror books this past few weeks. It was just what I needed. 

Dusty Everheart is a Nightmare and after her latest 'victim', Eli, discovers her sitting on his chest while he was sleeping magic government(or something like that) send him to her school where Dusty and Eli have to meet up 3 times a week for dream invading sessions. 

Eli is your typical hot guy so he didn't spark my interest at all, while, his roommate, Lance, the guy who bullies Dusty all the time, made me laugh a couple of times while he was bickering with Dusty. I'm not saying I approve of bullying it's just that he seemed more real than Eli. I look forward to D/L pranks in the future. 

There's no use of denying The Nightmare Affair has some similarities with Harry Potter. I won't bore you with the details, if I could ignore those similarities, I'm sure you will too. The bad guy/killer aspect of this novel was too predictable. Maybe younger readers won't see it from the start who is the fishy character. I also find the thought of teenagers against powerful adult warlocks silly. If I was 10 years younger I would accept it with no questions asked. 

All in all, a charming debut novel for the fans of magic boarding schools. I will definitely read the sequel. 

I would be cheating myself and this book if I didn't say that I enjoyed this book. 

I actually quite liked the whole concept of this book. For me, it was something I hadn't about or read before. So it was really refreshing. It was fast-paced and didn't have a single dull moment. I flew through the entire book and it was really fun.

The pretty cover and the synopsis of the book had attracted me to it almost instantly as soon as I saw it. Hello, we have a nightmare in the house? How much more incentive do you need? Plus, other than the fact that our protagonist is a nightmare , we also have this murder mystery put in front of us which also adds to the whole excitement! 

The story is pretty simple. Dusty is a nightmare. The concept of being a nightmare is very artfully explained in the book but let's just continue. Anyhow, Nightmares feed by extracting dream sequences. And Dusty being a nightmare needs to do just that. Things go awry when she finds herself in Eli Booker's room. Her work: Extract dream i.e to feed herself. Problem: Eli is a complete Hawteee.( Perks of her job: Straddling him. Which she obviously doesn't feel comfortable with..*coughs*) Anywaaaay,like I said things just get worse. Why? Because Eli is dreaming a murder and when the murder actually takes place.. things just get messier and messier. Now it's upto Dusty and Co. to find the murderer and stop the inevitable doom of mankind and magickind. Dun-Dun-Dun! 

The characters and it's fast-paced nature kept is what made the book what it is now. As I mentioned earlier, there was never a dull moment. The tone of the book was really light and fun to read about and I like how the characters have been portrayed. I love it when the author successfully creates characters- Both evil and good, who you can't help but like. Each character in their own way were fairly entertaining and it made the whole book work. Our leading protagonist, Dusty was a treat to read about. She was sarcastic and her issues made sense. And..she did not annoy me. So that's something. Her bestfriend Selene's character and Eli were another set of characters that made their way into my heart kingdom. Especially Selene. I just love fiesty and righteous bestfriends. And there was this feminist thing about her that I couldn't help but vouch for. :D

What I also liked about the book was the amount of romance it had in it. I'm happy that the book wasn't all about how much the protagonists loved each other but about the crux of it. Which was the murder mystery.

And this is where things fell down.

The murder mystery was so predictable. I can't even. I would've liked more action and more of that surprise element. But alas, it failed to deliver in that part.

This book definitely holds lot potential and for a debut, I feel Mindi Arnett has done something spectacular here. Will I recommend you to read it?
Definitely. :)


  1. Great interview. Looking forward to reading the book. :)

  2. I definitely agree that perhaps this book should be targeted at a slightly younger audience, but I still enjoyed it a lot. Nice reviews :)

  3. This sounds like a pretty easy read. Definitely for the younger crowd. While I do enjoy those, I had expected something more from this.

  4. I had no idea this book was meant for the younger crowd, but I tend to enjoy children's books so long as they are well written. Plus, I love books about boarding schools/camps! I have wanted to read this for quite a while now!