Thursday, July 16, 2009

In Your Dreams, Tom Holt

Posted by lea at 2:21 PM
In Your Dreams is Tom Holt's second novel in the fantasy series about J.W. Wells & Co - a multi-national corporation where magic is a commodity, and where young Paul Carpenter (the somewhat hopeless inoffensive type) finds himself bound by employment. We first met Paul in book one, the eminently readable The Portable Door. In Your Dreams takes up where that story left off, ramping up the fun while taking us deeper into this wacky fantasy world. In this second book, Paul grows a little more accustomed to his workplace surroundings and even becomes promoted to full 'hero' status after slaying a dragon (admittedly a very small one that he accidentally squashed to death by sitting on).

But new mysteries abound - prickly new love-of-his-life Sophie abruptly leaves him and soon Paul finds himself eyeball deep in the world of the Fey - the magical Faerie-like creatures with power over 'glamour'. One faction of the Fey, Paul discovers, is bent on world domination through infiltration of dreams, but with half of Hollywood in their pocket and the ensuing income this provides, no-one at profit-driven J.W. Wells & Co seems inclined to act, leaving Paul somehow the only person in the world who can take them on and save the world.

Again I have to give kudos to Tom Holt's imagination for the absurdly funny and magical elements of this book, but perhaps more so to his literary skills which manage to translate what he sees in his head onto the pages of a book. That's tough stuff. He treads the fine balance of poking deprecating humour at his hero with a genuine fondness that really comes across so we're all rooting for him too. Well worth a read.

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