Charlie has had a fear of the large mansion like home down the road from his own. His mother a long time ago told him to never go near the old house, and Charlie had ridden his bike by the home, but never approached it. After his mother died, he still stayed away even thought he lady who had owned the home was also gone.
Until one day…
One day Charlie seen a car at the old house and a woman with flaming red hair and a cackle for a laugh moves into the home. She is Charlotte Dechant, the daughter of the spooky old woman who had passed away, and as time goes on, Charlotte has her eyes on Charlies dad.
As if this was not enough… Charlie has incredible Nightmares, nightmares that feel all too real, and have to do often with the old house… and with Charlotte. When Charlie tries to talk to his dad, his dad feels Charlie is just having bad dreams, or making stuff up to keep him dad from Charlotte…
and then his nightmares start to slip into the waking world, and Charlie has to do something and soon.
I was impressed with Jason Segel’s first book. Obviously I am not the attended audience, but that said… I really enjoyed it and found I wanted to know what would happen next. Well written, and as I can imagine, all very real to Charlie our protagonist. Nightmares! is about a young boy learning to conquer his fears. But it is also more than that. It is about grief, and about loss, and learning to move on. This was the surprise I took away from this book.
This is more than a children’s book. In fact some of the things in the book I would imagine would be down right scary to a very young child (this too surprised me as I imagined this would be a fun lite read). I would say if you are considering this for your child, know that there are monsters in the book, and witches, and clowns (something that personally freaks me out). Use discretion knowing what your child(ren) can handle without finding the book too scary.
I listened to this on audio as Jason Segel narrates. It was a wonderful narration and I enjoyed the listen.
*This book is set up to be a series. I can see that it is open-ended enough where more stories could come from this.
- Age Range: 8 – 12 years
- Grade Level: 3 – 7
- Series: Nightmares!
- Hardcover: 368 pages
- Listening Length: 7 hours and 33 minutes
- Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (September 9, 2014)