Review

The Dreaming: The Collection

written and illustrated by Queenie Chan

The students at Greenwich Private Academy have more than the usual reasons to dislike school. If a student goes there, they might end up possessed by spirits…or vanishing without a trace…or dead.

Greenwich Private Academy is a boarding school located in the bushlands of Australia, right out in the middle of nowhere. Twins Amber and Jeanie are new attendants and have no idea what they’re getting themselves into. Amber is sensitive, bookish and superstitious, while Jeanie is more up-front and sociable. Their aunt works at the school, but soon leaves on business and is no longer a help to them.

The school looks very elegant, and the dorm rooms are nice enough to be five-star hotels, but any initial excitement about Greenwich doesn’t last. The girls start having identical creepy dreams. Dreams about frightening women in Victorian garb and bleeding trees. These images seem to match some of the paintings associated with the school, including one where three women with butcher knives chase another woman into the forest. The twins are also warned about “rumors” of people disappearing off into the bushlands and never being seen again. To make things all the more unsettling, the vice principal keeps an axe in her room. Is she the reason all these awful things are happening?

Amber starts having her own scary dreams and is spending more and more time asleep. A girl goes missing and her body is later found. Another girl, missing for years, returns to the school. In the midst of this, one of the teachers, Miss Anu, is doing her own research to understand what’s happening. Miss Anu’s family is Aborigine, and her understanding of the older stories in Australia may help everyone understand the situation.

THE DREAMING, an OEL manga originally published as three volumes, is given in its entirety in this new collection from TokyoPop. It even includes an extra comic at the end (the short story “The Barret Family”) and an interview with the writer/illustrator, Queenie Chan. THE DREAMING is a fun horror read with lots of mystery, intrigue and mythology.

Reviewed by Danica Davidson on September 7, 2010

The Dreaming: The Collection
written and illustrated by Queenie Chan

  • Publication Date: September 7, 2010
  • Genres: Manga
  • Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: TokyoPop
  • ISBN-10: 1427818711
  • ISBN-13: 9781427818713