Review: Dreamland by Sarah Dessen

Ever since she started going out with Rogerson Biscoe, Caitlin seems to have fallen into a semiconscious dreamland where nothing is quite real. Rogerson is different from anyone Caitlin has ever known. He’s magnetic. He’s compelling. He’s dangerous.

Being with him makes Caitlin forget about everything else—her missing sister, her withdrawn mother, her lackluster life. But what happens when being with Rogerson becomes a larger problem than being without him?

That was Rogerson, or so I was learning. He divided the world coolly into black or white, no grays or middle ground. People were either cool or assholes, situations good or bad. My friends, and my life at school, consistently fell into each of the latter. His friends were older, more interesting, and most importantly, not jocks or cheerleaders. When we did go to parties where I’d see Rina or Kelly Brandt or anyone else from the squad, it was always awkward. They’d want me to stay, pulling up a chair, handing over the quarter so I could take a bounce. But Rogerson was always impatient, finishing whatever business he had and heading straight for the door, making it clear he was ready to go.

I know you probably read the summary above and thought: this is just another novel about a lost teenage girl who falls in love with a boy who makes her forget her own life. That’s what I thought initially. But now, I see it as how many contemporary teen relationships are and it is very relatable. If Rogerson had been cool or an asshole (excuse my language), this book would not have been as compelling.