Is Awa a Dream Weaver? Written by a New Zealand author, Awa is beset with challenges – parental divorce, a new house, a new school, bullying and anxiety issues. Dreams offer a place for Awa to understand her real life stresses.
Awa’s dreams describe a matriarchal society challenged by evil forces and featuring traditional medicine plants – aligned with Māori culture. The author, Isa Pearl Ritchie, introduces Kawakawa through Awa pondering its significance in her dreams. I had googled it the day before to try to solve the mystery, but all I found was how it was used to treat cuts and itchy bites and digestive issues, and even to bless things like food, births, and deaths… so versatile…. But what does it mean here, for me?
The reader learns or may recognise and identify with cultural elements of New Zealand.
Furthermore, themes of racism and bullying are unfortunate aspects of New Zealand society that the reader may identify with. Ritchie introduces a mirror as a thematic icon for reflecting and deflecting power struggles inherent in Awa’s life and her dreams.
on the book's jacket Mandy Hager comments on the power of lucid dreaming and indeed this is a powerful tool for Awa who is a believably vulnerable character. Since it’s the first book in a series, I expect the young reader will eagerly anticipate the next instalment of Awa’s mysterious empowering role as a Dream Weaver – and be empowered in turn.
Title: Awa and the Dreamrealm: Dreamweavers Book 1
Author: Isa Pearl Ritchie
Publisher: Te Ra Aroha Press
Date of Publication: November 2019
Reviewer’s name, job title, school name & region: Michele Ayres Librarian RLIANZA , Motueka High School, Tasman
How highly are you recommending this book? Recommended
What’s the book’s opening sentence? She slid down through the tunnel of light.
You can buy this book here