The Nightmare Dilemma

By Mindee Arnett

Source: Received from the publisher

Series: Arkwell Academy #2

Received from the publisher, for free, for review consideration. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Publication Date: March 4, 2014

Published by Tor Teen

My Rating: four-stars

The Nightmare Dilemma

From Goodreads:

The second in a thrilling new fantastical mystery series

Dusty Everhart might be able to predict the future through the dreams of her crush, Eli Booker, but that doesn’t make her life even remotely easy. When one of her mermaid friends is viciously assaulted and left for dead, and the school’s jokester, Lance Rathbone, is accused of the crime, Dusty’s as shocked as everybody else. Lance needs Dusty to prove his innocence by finding the real attacker, but that’s easier asked than done. Eli’s dreams are no help, more nightmares than prophecies.

To make matters worse, Dusty’s ex-boyfriend has just been acquitted of conspiracy and is now back at school, reminding Dusty of why she fell for him in the first place. The Magi Senate needs Dusty to get close to him, to discover his real motives. But this order infuriates Eli, who has started his own campaign for Dusty’s heart.

As Dusty takes on both cases, she begins to suspect they’re connected to something bigger. And there’s something very wrong with Eli’s dreams, signs that point to a darker plot than they could have ever imagined.

There may be spoilers if you haven’t read The Nightmare Affair.

I really enjoyed reading The Nightmare Affair and was excited to read this sequel! When I had an opportunity to read it as an e-ARC from the publisher, I jumped at the chance!

At first, it took a while for me to get into the book because my life was very chaotic when I started to read it. However, soon I was swept back up into Dusty’s life at Arkwell Academy, and I’m pleased to say this book is just as fun as its predecessor. And of course, I love Dusty’s snarky, sarcastic attitude, which is back in full force!

After getting a bit of an overview of what has happened following the events of the last book, I was immersed in Dusty’s world again. I loved the details about her life at Arkwell, learning about changes at the school, but I especially enjoyed the mystery element of the book. While there was the central mystery that Dusty and Eli were trying to solve, there was another mystery involving Dusty’s own dreams, and the outcome of that was very cool. I didn’t solve either mystery before the end of the book, so bonus points from me for being unpredictable.

The world-building in this series is so fun. I love that it all takes place within our own everyday world. And can we take a moment to appreciate how awesome the covers are in this series? I love them! They totally fit the feel of the books.

The romantic tension between Dusty and Eli was a major aspect of this story, and I loved it. They clearly have an attraction to each other, but there is something holding them back from being together, and it’s not just because her ex-boyfriend is back at school. Yes, Paul is back at Arkwell! I wasn’t sure how I felt about him given that he lied to her and was working with the villain in The Nightmare Affair, but I was definitely rethinking that opinion by the end. I’m very curious to see if Paul will be back in the next book.

I can’t wait to read another book in this series. If you like magic, mystery, and romance, I totally recommend these books!

Check out my interview with author Mindee Arnett!

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