Reviewed by Chris
TITLE: Where I’ll Be Waiting
AUTHOR: Monika De Giorgi
PUBLISHER: eXtasy Books
LENGTH: 227 pages
RELEASE DATE: June 1, 2016
Facing your fears, inner demons, friendship and a love to dream of.
Jesse meets a wonderful guy who is caring, attentive, lovable, and handsome to boot. Unfortunately, the only time he sees Cameron is in his dreams—dreams that are never flimsy and fast forgotten in the morning, but feel very real. And the longer they go on, the more palpable they feel to Jesse.
But what happens when these dreams have a bigger and bigger impact on Jesse’s daily life? When they begin to take a toll on him and make it harder to wake up every day? And what if they turn into nightmares and Jesse can’t get out anymore, if he never wakes up?
One day Cameron finds a heartbreaking poem in a small notebook, hidden in a used book. From the first time he reads it, the handwritten words resonate somewhere deep within him and when he goes to sleep that night, he meets Jesse for the first time—a sad young man who makes Cam want to give him reasons to smile and a shoulder to cry on. From that night on, Jesse is a nightly visitor in Cameron’s dreams.
But what happens when Cameron finds out that his Jesse is very much real? And what if a sinister presence takes hold of their shared dreams and Cameron wakes up? Can he get back to Jesse? Or will Jesse stay back forever in this dreamscape turned nightmare?
When you meet the guy of your dreams, most people are not expecting him to actually be in your dreams. But for Jesse and Cameron, that is exactly how they meet. Jesse, a frustrated author, and Cameron, a clerk at his local bookstore, have a lot in common. And while neither of them are sure the other exists, they enjoy their time together in their dream world. But not everything can be all rainbows, because the longer they spend in the dreams the more real they become…and the less real the waking world turns. Plagued with chronic tiredness, both men struggle to go thru the real world, when the dream is all they want. Then Jesse finds himself trapped fully in his dreams, with many of Jesse’s nightmares to keep him company. With Cameron only able to pop in and out of Jesse’s nightmare, Jesse will have to learn to fight this battle on his own. And to find his way back to the real world and the man he only knows as the guy from his dreams.
Having read two books now in as many months that deal with the whole “dream walking” trope, I’m beginning to think that this is an idea I like more in theory than in practice. I like the idea of two guys meeting in their dreams and having to find each other in real life. But in reality, I guess I find dreams to not be terribly interesting to read about. Which I kinda knew beforehand, so I don’t know why it didn’t send off warning signals that these books might not be the best thing for me to read. Despite how compelling some of these dreams were, I couldn’t help but want to get back to the “real” story.
We did not get enough time really to spend on my favorite aspect of this book: the relationship between Cameron and Jesse. I liked how honest their relationship felt from the very beginning. It was not just a sex-crazed marathon, and you could really tell that there was something more between them than just chemistry. I’m not opposed to sex by any means, but I like to see relationships that are built on more than that. But while I liked them, certainly, it just never seemed to grow much. So much of the focus on the story was on Jesse’s past that their relationship got a bit sidelined. We also don’t find out much at all about Cameron other than where he works. It left that part of the book feeling a bit lopsided.
To be frank, the fact that nearly ⅔ of this book was focused on Jesse’s dream-walking therapy session didn’t do a lot for me. It ate up the story and didn’t fill all that empty space with anything particularly attention grabbing (and no, I don’t particularly find a grocery list of abusive relationships to be attention grabbing. After awhile it becomes repetitive and a bit monotonous). There also didn’t seem to be a reason for it. There was not catalyst to make me get why I spent nearly three hours reading about a dude walking around in circles and being yelled at by random assholes. I loved the idea that their shared dream walking was not all fun and games, but when it came to the darkside, I at least wanted some type of reasoning behind it. It felt too much like being cornered at a party by a dude who wants nothing more than to regale you with his every woe. am sure that Jesse got a lot out of his sleeptime therapy, but for me, being forced to watch some random dude find himself with the use of a doctor’s office poster slogans, is not a good use of my time.
Had this book spent more time in the real world, and less wandering aimlessly thru a dream, I could see myself really liking it. When Jesse wasn’t spouting self-help mantras he was interesting and probably the most three dimensional character here, and Cameron and Liam (Jesse’s best friend) were a nice supporting cast.
This book had a lot of potential, but its insistence on sticking to the dream world kinda killed all the tension for me. I think we were supposed to be afraid that Jesse would be stuck in the maze for eternity, but the longer he was the there the less interest I had in reading about it. There was no variation in the “monster” just more of the same over and over and it stopped being scary pretty quickly.
I wouldn’t call this a bad book, but it was stuck in mediocrity for so long it didn’t have the chance to pull itself up out of it by the end. By the time Jesse conquers his demons there isn’t time to build up the relationship with Cameron, or to give any of the characters a chance to shine. This became a story solely about Jesse’s issues, and that kinda killed it for me.