Moll is a gypsy. When her cob, Jinx, is stolen by the infamous Skull, Moll decides to steal Jinx back. But Moll gets more than she bargained for when she experiences Skull’s Dream Snatcher magic up close and learns from her foster family what really happened to her parents.
Abi Elphinstone has created an exciting first novel. Moll is an engaging character, full of human flaws but also courage in the face of great fear. The dark magic used by Skull is truly unsettling and strikes fear into the reader. The warmth of the countering old magic provides hope for Moll and the reader. In the form of the mysterious Amulets, it creates a quest narrative in which Moll must find them in order to save the old magic.
The Dreamsnatcher is more than a basic fight between good and evil though. The development of loyalty and friendship between Moll and Alfie coupled with Moll’s discovery of the story of her early past provides much of the novel’s storyline. The importance of family and community ties is evident in the depiction of Moll’s home camp. This creates a solid framework that the plotline operates from and imbues the novel with much of its power.
Elphinstone’s debut is fast paced and the reader is left with the desire to continue as soon as possible to the next book in the series. A great read for lovers of fantasy books.