Official Review: The Traveler by Jennifer Deaver

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Official Review: The Traveler by Jennifer Deaver

Post by desantismt_17 » 26 Jun 2019, 12:24

[Following is an official review of "The Traveler" by Jennifer Deaver.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Meet Ann. She’s a high-school senior who lives with her mom and wishes for more out of life. By day, she attends classes and spends time with her friends. By night, she dreams of a place with magic and castles.

Meet Annabelle. She’s a princess who lives with her dad and wishes for more out of life. By day, she attends to her royal duties and manages to have some fun, despite her responsibilities. By night, she dreams of a place with the strangest horseless carriages and a life of coursework and tests.

Ann and Annabelle are the same person. She travels between two worlds when she drifts off to sleep.

But she won’t be able to do this forever. Soon, Ann/Annabelle must make a choice. Remain as Ann and never see her father again, or remain as Annabelle and leave her mom.

Or, somehow, reunite her family.

I’ll be honest. When I started Jennifer Deaver’s The Traveler, it seemed like a lot of other fantasy books I’ve read. When I realized that Ann and Annabelle were the same person who dreamed each other’s lives, I was hooked. Yes, I’d seen stuff similar to this, but I hadn’t come across dream lives done in quite this way. From there, I got swept up in the fantastic adventure and finished the book in record time.

Ann and Annabelle, despite being the same person, are also individuals. Perhaps this sounds odd, but it really worked. For a while, it was like reading a story about identical twins who’d been separated at birth. I enjoyed getting to know Ann and Annabelle, and I loved watching her grow into one person, taking the best parts from each side.

Annabelle’s world was so much fun. There’s the palace, located in the thriving city of Pelland. There’s also the Enchanted Forest, which is full of creatures of all kinds. I got to know the characters on Annabelle’s side better, and if I had a chance to go there, I could spend days exploring and talking to people. On the flip side, Ann’s world felt a little underdeveloped, but this didn’t really bother me.

I did feel a bit of a disconnect with Ann/Annabelle’s age. She’s eighteen, but the story didn’t quite feel old enough for her to be eighteen. I think if she’d been a few years younger (fifteen, maybe), that disconnect wouldn’t have been there. The mechanics of Ann/Annabelle switching worlds was also never quite explained. Neither of these things really bothered me. Fantasy readers who need their magic systems cemented in concrete details may find this too whimsical. As for me, I was too wrapped-up in the story to think about how it all worked.

There were some grammatical errors throughout, but if I hadn’t been searching for them, I would have been too lost in the story to notice. These and, to a lesser degree, wishing Ann/Annabelle had been a few years younger bring me to rate The Traveler 3 out of 4 stars. If there had been fewer mistakes, the age disconnect wouldn’t have been enough to lower my rating from 4, and I never thought to give this 2. I recommend this book to fans of light fantasy or fairytales. Middle-school-aged readers (girls, in particular) may also enjoy this, as might those who enjoy family stories. All the loose threads are tied up, but there could be room for a sequel. If one pops up, I’ll definitely be reading it.

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Post by Shadiid » 27 Jun 2019, 14:06

Yes , you're right 18 is too old for this character. Seems like a wonderful book for kids.

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Post by Stephanie Elizabeth » 27 Jun 2019, 15:50

Sounds like a captivating read. Now I really want to know which world she chooses! Thanks for the great review!

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Post by kandscreeley » 28 Jun 2019, 08:58

Even from the summary, I'm not sure I'd believe Ann and Annabelle are 18 years old. Still, it sounds like a cute story that I would enjoy reading. This is one that should go on my list. Thanks!
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Post by kdstrack » 28 Jun 2019, 11:35

The age thing struck me too with this level of fantasy. I would probably lower the character's age even lower. It would be interesting to read about her final decision. Wonderful review! Thanks.

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Post by LeeleeByoma » 28 Jun 2019, 15:35

Well, this book is giving me some fun movie ideas. Unfortunately, the budget to execute such a movie is a different matter altogether. Great review.

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Post by Kaylee610 » 28 Jun 2019, 21:32

The girl seems too young to be a senior

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Post by esp1975 » 02 Jul 2019, 12:52

This sounds like a great middle-grade book. I think readers of the right age probably won't notice that the main character is a little too old (it will probably seem like what they think an 18 year old should be). I may have to look into this for some kids I know.

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Post by Nisha Ward » 02 Jul 2019, 13:33

I'd love to know how Ann/Annabelle deals with bringing herself back to one person and which world she chooses. Furthermore, I'm stumped as to what she's going to do about her situation with her parents, so that's a good place to start when trying to hook me into a book. Looks like an awesome read.
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Post by chiefsimplex » 02 Jul 2019, 13:59

Her dilemma is one very interesting part and the plot is so wonderfuly original.I am not a fan of fantasies but i could give this one a chance.Great review!
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Post by Dee_218 » 05 Jul 2019, 16:06

I love fantasies and this twist sounds like aust read. Thank you for a great review.

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Post by DD129 » 26 Jul 2019, 07:03

I’ve seen this idea (switching between two worlds when you sleep) executed before. I’m curious about how this author will twist it and make it her own. I’ll have to read it and see. Good review!

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Post by RoxieReads » 31 Jul 2019, 10:13

This sounds very light-hearted and fun, although definitely too young to have an eighteen-year-old as a protagonist.

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Post by corinaelena » 17 Aug 2019, 03:30

Such a great review! My cousin is turning 12 and I am looking for some nice books for her. Thanks!

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