What Dreams We Had – Phill Featherstone

What Dreams We Had is an intriguing novel about five young people in the period between their exams and waiting for the result. They will all go their separate ways after the summer. Four of them form a band, and whilst playing at the End of Year celebration, they receive an amazing invitation: to play at a wealthy celebrity’s event in Tuscany, where they will stay at a luxury villa with their expenses paid.

It sounds too good to be true, but being young, they don’t look at it that way. The five, one of the band members bring his girlfriend, go off to Tuscany by train. It’s a long journey, and when they get to the villa, in the middle of nowhere, they realise it might not be what they expected. There is no mobile phone service, no internet, no television or radio. They’re cut off from the outside world.

Phill Featherstone, the author, has set up a wonderful group of young people with different characters and very different backgrounds. How will they react when things aren’t what they expected? Especially as a series of mysterious events begin. The young people are forced to review who they are, and who they thought the others were. They have known each other for quite some time, but under pressure, attitudes might change.

What Dream We Had is a coming of age novel, where some of the young people have to grow up rather fast. Why is the forest out of bounds? Who unlocked the door to the studio? So many questions come up when reading the book, that it makes it clear that it’s not just a holiday in Tuscany. The ending still came as a real surprise to me, and it made such an unexpected ending. I would have loved to know more in-depth what happened to them all, especially the one main character.

The book isn’t fast-paced but contains enough hints to keep you going, wondering what will happen next. I absolutely love the cover, it’s so atmospheric.

I received a review copy via Love Books Tours but was under no obligation or pressure to write a favourable review. The book contains strong language and bedroom scenes.

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