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House of Dreams Mass Market Paperback – Aug 2001

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (Aug 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312977409
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312977405
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 3.4 x 16.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,390,232 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By Gail Chambers Fegan on 14 July 2014
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Not up to brenda Joyce's normal standard. Very slow book. Hard to finish.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 48 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
"The others had gathered in the library for drinks before reporting the murder..." 24 Nov 2006
By SheReads - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
In the space of 48 hours at an isolated estate, one woman dies, two go missing and the host's beloved wife - who vanished 8 years ago from the same house - is seen looking in a window.

Do you:

(a) contact the police

(b) organize a search

(c) take the children and leave

(d) gather in the library for drinks

(e) none of the above

If your answer is "d," you're too early by one murder. They don't gather in the library for drinks or consider getting the police involved, until a man is found stabbed to death on the property. Time to stop arguing and spring into action - almost! First, hors d'oevres.

Once in a while, you read something so awful you begin to enjoy it as comedy. I've chosen to believe that Brenda Joyce intended "House of Dreams" to be tongue-in-cheek. Which also explains why, when a character blurts out a cliff-hanger confession, accusation or other line that ought to ignite a big scene, the author usually skips that part and moves on.

I gave in to the laughter when, on the morning after a life-shattering confrontation between two sisters in love with one man, the good sister knocks on the other's bedroom door and chirps, "Wake up, lazybones!"

Be forewarned, there's not a likeable character or a credible moment in this whole mishmash. Then enjoy it for laughs, assuming you didn't pay big bucks for the unabridged audio CD. In which case, the joke is on you. (And me.)
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Good story, but needs a proofreader and a thesaurus 26 Dec 2002
By Jackie M. Bachenberg - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Ms. Joyce tells a good tale, she just needs a good proofreader and needs to invest in and use a thesaurus.
The tale itself is a mixture of mystery, historical novel, and romance. The base of the story is that a woman who died 400 years ago is linked to two families. She feels that these two families betrayed her and she's still out to get them. The story mixes modern world with the story of this woman from 400 years in the past. Meanwhile, in modern times, you've got a pretty scary ghost story going on. The story itself is highly entertaining, as long as you don't pay attention to the details. Think of it as that highly entertaining, but critically unaclaimed movie that you watch just for fun. If you get caught up in the details that just aren't right, then make a game of it, because otherwise, it will make you crazy.
When I say it needs proofing, I'm not kidding. There are places where a man is described as wearing a black coat and then two pages latter it's blue. She describes a young boy as having polio. Now this takes place in modern times and this child is less than ten years old. To my knowledge, a case of polio hasn't been reported in Western Europe in the last 10 or 20 years, so that's just totally bogus!! And then there was my favorite proofing error, "She hid her hands behind her face." I'm not sure this is anatomically possible.
Ms. Joyce needs to get a thesaurus to try and cure her overuse of the word gaze. She loves this word, both as a noun and a verb and in one nights reading, I kept track. The longest Ms. Joyce could go without using some variation of this beloved word was two pages.
If you want a fun read, go for it. But don't be looking for literary excellence.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
- 4 Feb 2006
By Jennino95 - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This does not hold up to the standards I'm used to expect from Brenda Joyce. I agree with some of the other reviews that she needed a proofreader. The parts in Spanish where atrocious. Also, the plot, oh my god, the plot. The story was convoluted in an unnecessary way. Don't get me wrong I'm a fan of gothic romances but this was too much. The characters where either oblivious or ridiculous, or both. If this is your first Brenda Joyce read, please choose another book.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
intrigue, dangerous emotions, confusion - GOOD 17 Aug 2001
By Sherry Norton - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have to disagree with these reviewers that found this book "bad, and characters undeveloped". I found the characters very real in the sense that they were confused in their emotions. Cass, the lead, was one minute fiercely loyal and the next was ready to forget everyone and do exactly what she wanted to do. Don't we all feel that way sometimes? I got that she was sick of sacrificing herself for her selfish sister and finally did what she wanted with Antonio. Antonio, I admit, could have been more deeply developed. I didn't feel like I ever really got to know him at all. But I thought Joyce did a good job with the ghost aspect. I did feel sorry for Isabel - she was completely in love and loyal to that love and he was not! No wonder she was ticked off at everyone! I did find it a stretch that they stayed at the house as long as they did with all that was happening, but hey, it is a ghost story! People always stay in the haunted house when it's way past time to get out... I still have faith in Joyce. She remains one of my favs and I will continue to buy anything with her name on it.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
I do not agree with these reviewers and I'll tell you why... 27 Aug 2001
By Huntress Reviews - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Cassandra de Warrenne, a woman whose passion is found in the pages of history books, is about to live the nightmare of her life. When her sister, Tracey, brings home her new boyfriend, Antonio de la Barca, Cass never expected the immediate attraction she experiences. Catherine de Warrenne, aunt to Cass and Tracey, never thought she would see another de la Barca in her lifetime, but when she meets Antonio, the horror and memories flood back to her. Isabel de Warrenne, a woman who died 445 years before, is about reek havoc on these two families. But what no one knows is who she is and why she is here� ***** Never in my life did I think I would read a scary book, but this one I could not put down. The character�s and the story flowed together so well, I forgot I was reading a book. I kept on looking over my shoulder making sure Isabel wasn�t there watching me. Look at the reviews on B&N online and you will see everyone thought this book was 4 or 5 stars! Most reviewers here have only theirselves to blame, since they did not seem to read what the book was about. They simply are used to this author writing a different TYPE of book. However, that does not make this type of book bad! It is EXCELLENT for those of us who like GOTHICS! I don't care what others think, this one sent chills down my spine! Recommended reading! *****...Blair
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