DiscoverMiddle Grade

Wicked Dreams: A Wicked Short (Wicked Unearth, Book 2)


Loved it! 😍

This enjoyable short story introduces young readers to the paranormal genre without the intimidating feel of a more lengthy novel.

It is one day after ten-year-old Inez Finley’s teacher, Ms. Bennett, goes to the hospital because of an allergic reaction; an event which Inez had dreamed of the night before. This is not the first time Inez has had a premonition that came true, and though she does not yet understand what it means, it is a trait she shares with her grandmother. Today is Saturday, and Inez’s mother invites Inez, Grandma Esther, and Inez’s best friend Quinn to join her on an excursion to downtown Providence, Rhode Island. Upon arriving, Inez and Quinn look to Grandma Esther to provide exciting entertainment, as she so often does. Grandma Esther does not disappoint. On the lookout for more information about their mysterious ancestor Mercy Finley, Grandma Esther takes Inez and Quinn to Books Schmooks, a store owned by the daughter of Grandma Esther’s friend, Miss Cori. There, they uncover centuries-old documents linking Mercy to the Salem Witch trials. An unexpected appearance by Mercy’s ghost, who is normally only seen in dreams, shakes Inez and she loses consciousness only to wake in her home hours later.

Directly following the first book in this series, Wicked Dreams takes readers deeper into Inez’s story through details of her ancestor, Mercy. Told in a similar fashion to the preceding book, older elementary-school-aged readers will appreciate both the accessible length of the story and the overall depth of the plot. Friendship and love are common themes in both stories, and even though Inez’s “gift” is unusual, its existence does not change the way her family feels about her. Descriptive language and careful storytelling move readers smoothly from beginning to end, bringing Inez’s world to life. An unresolved ending easily leaves the series open for a third installment and gives the story the feel of a singular episode within a greater work rather than a fully contained book. The opportunity for more detail within the narrative is rich, as more questions are posed than answered. However, the brevity of the books in this series means young readers can be more easily introduced to the paranormal genre without the intimidating feel of a more lengthy novel.

Grades 5-6

Reviewed by

My career has focused on children’s literature, primarily, but I have a love for YA books, too. I began reviewing books in 2015, since which time I have had over 500 published reviews!

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About the author

Jessica (J.L.) is a lifelong lover of books. Currently, she works as an English professor, blogger, literacy program developer, and book podcast host. She hopes to continue to share her favorite reads and spread her love of learning, reading, and diverse characters to the next generation. view profile

Published on August 15, 2020

7000 words

Genre: Middle Grade

Reviewed by