Release Date: January 17th 2017
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Six months ago, Ashling Campbell’s life was good. Okay, so the sleep deprivation sucked, but that’s what happens when you’re murdered by bloodthirsty demons on a nightly basis via freaky supernatural nightmares. That’s why she stepped up to her calling as a dreamwalker. But if she’d known that saving her town meant giving up everyone she loved, she’d have let that call go straight to voicemail.
She wants another chance. Just one. And the key to that chance lies with finding the mysterious stranger who disappeared shortly after her life went to hell. Her new mission is to dreamwalk again, or die trying.
The Jumlin wants another chance too. Just one. And the key to that chance lies with finding the weird sophomore who showed up just before he could summon hell on earth. His new mission is to stop the line of dreamwalkers, by killing just one – a girl that seems all too eager to die.
If Ash’s plan is to succeed, she’ll have to outsmart the immortal demon, piece together her thorny family tree, deal with a friend’s untimely return, and pass her driver’s test – all before she turns… SIXTEEN.
Sixteen is the second installment in author Jen Estes' The Dreamwalker Diaries. 16-year old Ashling (Ash) Campbell is a sophomore at Billings HS in Montana. She once believed that if you died in your dreams, you died in real life. In Fifteen, Ash discovered that she is someone who is extremely rare. She is a dreamwalker. She can travel to the future, & arrive in an older version of herself. She even learns about a bleak future where she joins a rebellion and fights against evil.
Thanks to her extraordinary efforts 6 months ago, Walker Smith, aka the Bad Guy, aka Jumlin Demon Spawn who was responsible for Ash's horrific loss, was stopped in his tracks. He plans for Billings was stopped, and his one piece that could have made Smith win, was taken off the board, and sent away. Ash is still suffering from that loss, and the betrayal of her best friend Tate Witko who left her behind to run away with her foster sister Nadette.
Ash has tried a number of different avenues to time travel back to the day of the incident, but her attempts have landed her in hot water with the law, and with her surrogate Aunt Levaughn. Ash realizes that something drastic needs to be done since the next celestial event that will allow her to Dreamwalk, won't happen for another 15 years. Her search for Dr. Robert Dietz, who she met in Fifteen, ends up with some very interesting revelations, and an emotional visit to the past, and a plan to ensure that Smith never gets the chance to hurt anyone Ash knows again.
There are several parts of this story that stood out for me. The first was the prologue which took readers back in time to the very first Dreamwalker. I liked this because it puts Ash's and her fellow Dreamwalker's purpose into perspective, and also adds a diverse addition to the series. The second is that Ash has a bit of a romance angle going on in this book, and it is not who you would have thought. In fact, her love interest isn't afraid of getting his hands dirty in order to help Ash with her counter punch to Walker Smith.
The character I most feel for is Skylar Smith. She's Ash's friend, and one that has done whatever she can to make Ash feel like she's necessary in the face of antagonism from Skylar's rich friends. But, there are spoiler issues that I can't nor won't discuss with regards to Skylar. One can hope that she lands on her feet, and gets the payback she deserves. I also love Aunt Levaughn for simplistic reasons. Here is a woman who is now mayor, who is guardian to Ash, who has to watch as Ash unravels, and then she finds herself being part of Ash's new demon hunters.
I do hope that the author and publisher releases the third installment within the next year. We have waited two long years for this novel to be released, and even though it doesn't
disappoint, one can not know where they will be in a year, or even if they will still be alive by then.