I received a review copy
In Imaginary Things, by Andrea Lochen, single mother Anna Jennings finds herself at the end of her rope and seeking refuge once again at her grandparent’s house in small-town, rural, Wisconsin; the place she thought she would never come back to. When Anna was “too much to handle” for her mother, she would find herself dropped off at her grandparents in Wisconsin. Every time she faces trials, she ends up returning there for support from them; along with her best friend and next-door-neighbor, Jamie Presswood. When she is laid off and her bank account dries up; she packs up her few belongings and her four-year-old son, David. Once back at her grandparent’s house, she begins to appreciate the safety and security of the small town, along with trying to reconnect with the now adult and attractive Jamie Presswood. However, this bliss doesn’t last long as David’s imaginary friends, two dinosaurs, enter the picture. To Anna’s shock, she too can see the shadowy creatures and attempts to discover what they are and why David has created them.
I enjoyed this book, but I think it would have been a stronger story without the imaginary friends being alive and having the ability to interact with humans. I think that it was an interesting idea to have the imaginary creatures come to life, but the actual writing of it paired with the emotional story of Anna wasn’t a cohesive whole. If there had been some reason why Anna and David were able to have their imaginary friends come to life as it has to do with their genes or the area it occurs in; it would have made more sense. Instead, the story felt more like a good idea that wasn’t developed enough, and failed to come to complete fruitation.
In fact, the story doesn’t even need the imaginary friends being seen by Anna, as the rest of the story was very strong, well written, and extremely enjoyable. The story of the young, single mother, Anna trying to raise her son and having life’s troubles sending her back to the small town life she had always disliked and thought boring. Her having to resettle into life with her grandparents, try to find a job, and be the best parent to David possible was fascinating on its own. Not to mention dealing with the fear and broken trust left by her ex-boyfriend and David’s father. In fact this was an amazingly well done story as it was about an everyday character that all can relate to some part of. The added romance with her old best friend Jamie; who brings all the issues and insecurities she has been running from back into the open, and starts changing her life. This story was strong and powerful, and I would have preferred it (with regular imaginary friends) that way, than the mystical one that was published.
I give this four out of five stars as I loved the core story of Anna, David, Jamie, and small-town Wisconsin.
IMAGINARY THINGS buy links
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1DXghMZ
Astor + Blue: http://bit.ly/1HJ3VW9