Melody
ISBN-13: 9780385734165
Publisher: Random House Childrens Books
Published: January 2008
154 pgs


We are such stuff
As dreams are made on;
and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.

~ William Shakespeare,
The Tempest, act 4, scene 1




You know, I have often wonder about dreams. What are they? And why do we have them? A scientific view reveals that dreams are sequence images, sounds and feelings experienced while sleeping, strongly associated with rapid eye movement sleep. In Gossamer, Lois Lowry tells her story about dream-givers and how dreams are casted upon humans (or even animals) by them.

These dream-givers have the ability of dissolving and what they do is they gather memories, colours, words once spoken, hints of scents and any tiniest fragments of forgotten sound through touching. They collect pieces of the present and the past; and with these things they create dreams to people who need a good and happy dream.

However, not all people received pleasant dreams as there are the dark and fearsome creatures known as the Sinisteeds that plague their victims with nightmares.

Now there is a little new dream-giver called Littlest One who is slowly learning her job of bestowing dreams. Together with her mentor, Thin Elderly, they visit an old woman's house each night to gather fragments and memories about her. The old woman has a dog named Toby and she is also looking after a troubled boy who is staying with her temporarily. John is a very unhappy boy because he has an abusive father and a mother who is frightened of him but still struggles to put life together.

When John came into the old woman's house, he is always angry and rude but the old woman is kind and always patient. When John became the victim of the Sinisteeds, the old woman will come to him and comfort him whenever he has nightmares. Now Littlest One, with the assistance from Thin Elderly, will have to try their best to gather all the happy things to bestow pleasant dreams to John before the Sinisteeds beat them to it.

Gossamer is a quick and entertaining read, and one that leaves a warm feeling in my heart after I closed the book and with the story still lingers in my mind. Littlest One is one extraordinary dream-giver. Though young and inexperienced, she already possess the quality of compassion and what most impressed me is her positive attitude and her interest in learning. I especially loved her insights on the sad parts of life:

... I get a lot of sad fragments from photograph of the soldier - feelings of never-coming-back feelings of now I'm-all-alone. But the kiss is there, too, in that photograph, so I always collect there, just to keep that kiss fragment for her. And you know what, Thin Elderly? Sad parts are important. If I ever get to train a new young dream-giver, that's one of the things I'll teach: that you must include the sad parts, because they are part of the story, and they have to be part of the dreams.

It is so true. Who said the sad parts have to be all bad? Sometimes, we have to have some sad parts in our life to remind us and be appreciative of the good ones we have.

Can you tell that I really enjoyed reading this story? I seriously do. I can not wait to read more Lois Lowry books in future.

PS: Alice, thank you so much for sending this book to me! I really appreciate it!

Other blog reviews:
Back to Books
Becky's Book Reviews
Hello, My Name is Alice
Stuff as Dreams Are Made On
The Hidden Side of a Leaf
Things Mean a Lot
(Let me know if I've missed yours.)

24 Responses
  1. Kim L Says:

    There are some books of Lois Lowry's that I have really enjoyed in the past. Thanks for mentioning this one!


  2. Eva Says:

    I loved this one too, but a certain part of it (what the dad did to John with the food) made me cry so hard. And I still tear up thinking about it.


  3. violetcrush Says:

    This is such a cute story. I am adding this to my wishlist, i would definitely love to read ti.


  4. Melody Says:

    Kim - I'm definitely looking forward to reading more of Lois Lowry's books in future. This one is really good. :)

    Eva - Oh, that part made me so sad! Poor little John! I couldn't imagine any father would do this to their kids, even if it's fictional!

    Violet - It's a cute and sweet story IMO. I'm glad to hear you're adding this book to your wishlist. I hope you'll enjoy it if you get to it. :)


  5. Julia Says:

    Interesting review, Melody. I always wonder what my dreams mean when I have them. Sometime I wish I could interpret it, even though I'm scared to because it make me think it mean something bad. So I'm always think on postitive side of the dreams sometime :)

    Enjoy reading your review! Always you done good :)


  6. Melody Says:

    Julia - Thank you! You're always so sweet! :)

    Dreams are indeed interesting and yet intriguing, aren't they? Most of the times, I tend to forget what I've dreamt so I don't always take it to heart no matter if they're good or bad dreams, haha.


  7. mariel Says:

    Great review, thanks! Sounds really interesting. I should really try reading Lowry.


  8. Julia Says:

    Well that good for you, because sometime when I have bad dream and I remember it, it stuck in my head and I be thinking about it over and over....*shudder*


  9. Sandy Nawrot Says:

    My daughter and I are reading this together, and it is simply magical. (I've always been intrigued by dreams, probably because I have some doozies.) We will probably go on to read other Lois Lowry books, we have been so taken by this one!


  10. Trish Says:

    Glad it left you with a warm feeling because for a little bit it sounded really frightening! Dreams are so fascinating and it sounds like Lowry does a good job of exploring their depths. Nice review, Melody.


  11. Dar Says:

    What a fabulous review Melody. You really made me feel what this book is all about. It just sounds great. I'll have to check if my library carries it. I'm glad you enjoyed it so much, it's great to run across a book like that.


  12. J. Kaye Says:

    I really love this author! Great review.


  13. Iliana Says:

    I swear every book I hear about by Lois Lowry sounds really good. I need to get with the program and finally read one! :)

    Thank you for the review Melody!


  14. Nymeth Says:

    Lovely review, Melody. I'm so glad you enjoyed it so much. Lowry is such a great writer.


  15. Melody Says:

    Mariel - Thanks! I think you'll enjoy his books. :)

    Julia - I understand about those bad dreams. It can be scary!

    Sandy - I can't wait to hear your thoughts on it!

    Trish - I like Lois Lowry's writing style! I'm glad to read this book!

    Dar - Thanks! :) I hope you'll enjoy it if you get the chance to read it. :)

    J. Kaye - Thank you! Now he's one of my favourite authors. ;)

    Iliana - I hope you'll get the chance to read his books soon! :)

    Nymeth - Thank you! :) Lowry is indeed a great writer!


  16. Alice Teh Says:

    Great review, Melody! I'm so glad you like the book. It's definitely one of my favourite books. Thanks for the mention too. :D


  17. Melody Says:

    Thank you, Alice! I really enjoyed reading this book! Thanks again for sending me this book! It's definitely one of my keepers! ;)


  18. Ladytink_534 Says:

    I know I'd probably love this author but I haven't gotten around to reading anything by her yet. Glad you enjoyed it though!


  19. Melody Says:

    Jen - I hope you'll read this book soon. I think you'll enjoy it! :)


  20. Rhinoa Says:

    I'm hoping to get to this during Febuary. I have read quite a lot of her other books and can't say I have read one I didn't realy enjoy. I hope you feel the same :)


  21. I love the premise of this book. I am glad you enjoyed it, Melody!


  22. Melody Says:

    Rhinoa - I'm starting to look up her other books now. I think I'm going to try The Giver next! :)

    Wendy - I'm glad you love the premise of this book. I hope you'd read it soon. :)


  23. I am a Teacher and I am looking to do a book review/project after I read Gossamer with my fifth graders in Literature Circles. Do you have any suggestions. I did so much enrichment while reading the book that I am all out of ideas for the final project. Internet didn't help either!

    Amanda :)


  24. Melody Says:

    Amanda - Thanks for visiting my blog! I'd be glad to offer some assistance if possible. I'll drop you an email shortly. :)