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The Daydreamer [Paperback]

Ian McEwan
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
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Book Description

May 10 2005
A classic from one of our greatest storytellers underlines Doubleday Canada’s commitment to YA fiction, in a handsome new edition that will appeal to young readers of all ages.

In these seven exquisite, interlinked episodes, grown-up Peter Fortune reveals the secret journeys, metamorphoses, and adventures of his childhood.

Living somewhere between dream and reality, Peter experiences fantastical transformations: he swaps bodies with the family cat and a cranky infant, battles a very bad doll who comes to life to seek revenge, and discovers in a kitchen drawer some vanishing cream that actually makes people vanish. In the final story, he wakes up as an eleven-year-old inside a grown-up’s body, and embarks on the truly fantastic adventure of falling in love. Moving, dreamlike, and extraordinary, The Daydreamer is a celebration of imagination and fantasy.

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The Daydreamer + First Love, Last Rites
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Most grown-ups think Peter Fortune is a difficult child because he is so quiet: they "knew that something was going on inside that head, but they couldn't hear it or see it or feel it. They couldn't tell Peter to stop it, because they didn't know what it was he was doing in there." Actually, he is involved in one of his great adventures: exchanging bodies with his ancient pet cat, battling a troop of dolls come to life, making his parents disappear with a vanishing cream or discovering what it is like to be an adult falling in love. Through his daydreams, Peter learns to see the world from numerous points of view. He is the only boy at school, for example, who can recognize the weaknesses of a bully and feel compassion for him. In his first book for children, McEwan ( The Comfort of Strangers ; The Child in Time ) dextrously presents a series of strange and wonderful metamorphoses. His vivid and poetic writing, celebrating the creative abilities of a gifted 10-year-old, reveals a profound understanding of childhood. Illustrations not seen by PW. Ages 8-up.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-6–It seems to many people that ten-year-old Peter Fortune spends most of his days with his head in the clouds living a quiet, perhaps boring life. Only Peter knows of the fantastic adventures he experiences when he lets his mind wander and he begins to daydream. Bestselling British author Ian McEwan's first book for children (HarperCollins, 1994) takes the audience into the fantasy life of this young boy. Each unique daydream is told almost as its own story. The stories have very different tones, but are linked by the characters and school setting. Some of Peter's daydreams are role reversals where he gains insight into another creature's mind, such as when he exchanges bodies with the family cat, or he switches places with a tantrum-throwing infant. Other stories are funny and imaginative like the daydream about finding a jar of invisibility cream in the kitchen's junk drawer. One daydream is quite frightening, as a deformed doll belonging to Peter's sister takes her revenge out on Peter in a cruel manner. Accomplished performer Simon Prebble skillfully narrates the novel with a soothing voice that puts listeners into an almost daydream state of their own. His British accent provides a feel for the setting of the book. Young listeners will enjoy having each daydream read like an individual short story. Creative children may be inspired by some of the daydreams to write about their own fantasies. A good choice for school and public libraries serving upper elementary and middle school students.–Casey Rondini, Hartford Public Library, CT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read-aloud and a classic! Nov. 24 2001
By A Customer
I bought this book, thinking that my oldest daughter who is 11 would like to read it. When I got it, I read it before her and found it wonderfully funny and easy to relate to. I love to read aloud to my children, and since each chapter is a short story or adventure in Peter's life, I decided it would be a great book to read before bedtime each night. My girls absolutely loved it and laughed out loud at Peter's adventures. They asked me to read it to their respective classes, and I did to my 4th grader's class. They got so attached to Peter that when I read his last story, they asked me if I could start over and read it to them again. Peter had become their best friend, someone who fullfilled their fantasies. A must for every parent, especially if your child is a daydreamer.
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By A Customer
The reading is said to be at the age 9-12 level; however, the story can be read at any level, age, or time. This is not a simple story. The seven short stories in this are about a daydreamer, a wonderer who lives out his fantasies. Peter is all of us in one way or another, at any time in our lives. This book deals wonderfully with the human nature, human spirit that often wonders and makes us think about what if's. All of Peter's adventures are about life, if you look at the deeper meaning. Peter is reminiscent of who we all are and who we want to be. A beautiful book that can be read and related to by anyone.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great escape and not too Harry Potter! May 23 2002
This is definitely a good book for grown ups but still young enough to be appreciated by kids. I was reading it and friends tsk'ed and asked if it was just another "Harry Potter" book and I had to say it wasn't at all like those books. Not being a fan of the Potter books, I was almost offended at the comparison. Ian McEwan is a fantastic writer and brilliantly writes kids without losing his intelligent edge. I would definitely recommend this as a whimsical escape or just as a creative stimulus for anyone experiencing the sort of block that leaves one wondering just where imagination goes when we become adults?!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book, Great Stories Dec 28 2002
By A Customer
Format:Library Binding
I love this book. It is one of my favorite books of all time. I got it years and years ago and haved loved it ever since. Peter daydreams about all sorts of things from his sister's dolls coming to life to turning into his cat and even a baby. It's a great book that you can read in one sitting. Each chapter is a different story, same characters, about Peter's daydreams. My favorite chapters are the ones where he turns into a cat and the one where his sister's dolls come to life and are evil. It's a charming book that anyone can love. ...This book is great for all ages. Enjoy!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Someone Who Dreams March 3 1998
By A Customer
By Ronnisha, Grade 4
You should read The Daydreamer if you like to dream. IN the DAYDREAMER, Peter, the main character, always DREAMS. Many parts of the book made me laugh because they are very funny, like the part when Peter left his seven year old sister on the bus because he was DAYDREAMING about saving his sister, from something. I am not going to tell you what because that would give it away. I am going to tell you that this book is very good to read for someone who knows how DREAM! I recommend that you read this all night OK.
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By A Customer
By Sonya, Grade 4
You should read The Daydreamer by Ian McEwan! Many different kinds of people would like this book.
I recommend this book to someone who is afraid of dolls. Peter is afraid of his sister Kate's doll. He had a dream that the doll came alive and said, "I'll get your room someday!" The doll wanted to have its own room
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