Well, all my misgivings from the first book are forgotten. Rather than a book of two teens going through a very angst-y love affair this book is about selflessness. And I loved it!
Helen knows the Furies are destroying the Scions lives. Rather than let her family and others endure the agony of experiencing the Furies every time they meet, and the fights that surely follow, Helen has made it her destiny to find the Furies in the Underworld and end the curse.
The problem is she has to Descend to the U/World every night and endure torment and torture to get to her goal. She isn't making any progress on her own and it's making her really sick.
Of course, one of the other reasons she's going to the Underworld is so that she can avoid seeing so much of Lucas. Even though she knows they're cousins it doesn't help her heart in any way being near him. He seems to also have the same response. Until his father tells Lucas he must end his relationship once and for all. Cousins can't be together and their offspring are usually born insane. Lucas makes a grand gesture that pushes Helen even further away from him and his family. So, for Helen, going into the underworld is certainly an escape.
On one journey she meets another person being attacked by a harpy. He introduces himself as Orion. Helen isn't sure whether she can trust him but then she learns her mother equipped Orion with a nifty gift that means he can descend also. Helen's mother, for all her meanness may have saved Helen with this one gesture. Orion is from the other of the four houses which means although they can work together in the underworld, once they get back to the surface the Furies will be at them to attack and kill each other. This happens once and its an experience both of them want to remember and forget at the same time.
Helen grows closer to Orion but she can see conflict still every time she notices Lucas nearby. Little does she know that Lucas has been keeping his own secrets and he is fully aware of Orion and Helen's descending and what takes place in the underworld.
Things start to get messy. Orion, Lucas and Helen are from the Four Houses. If the blood of all the houses is joined, as in blood brothers, then it will free all the Gods. They will arrive on Earth and start another war for domination. It could annihilate the human race.
The future doesn't look good for our heroine, and her two suitors are nothing short of valiant in this sequel. While Starcrossed came across as gushy in places, telling too much story rather than showing -- and a lot of story there was too -- Dreamless has found more of a centre and has stuck to the main thread of the story arc. There are a few diversions with Helen's friend Zach, and Helen's mother seeking out the frightening sounding Tantalus. Rather than a story of young love (which primarily this is) the tale shows the characters in a less glamourous light.
I'm not a fan of love triangles, although I'm one of the few that believe they do exist in real life. Angelini covered this delicately and with the sensitivity it deserved without making it too unreal. I loved Orion and although I didn't take to Lucas in the first book I do think he's grown more in Dreamless.
Most of all Helen has proved that although she may only be an island girl and have a horrid disowning mother, she can overcome all the Fates going against her and fight for the greater good. She has proved to me she is selfless. Her character is still growing and I don't think we've seen the last of her talents.
I loved Dreamless, so much more than Starcrossed. I'm looking forward to Goddess now the danger of Earth being destroyed is very real. I also hope we see more of the gorgeous Morpheus. Phew, what a guy!
As the only Scion that can enter Hades at will, Helen descends to the
Underworld in search of a way to overcome the Furies and end the cycle
of revenge that has cursed the Scions. But she’s running out of time.
Each descent weakens her both in mind and spirit. A mysterious stranger
might be her only salvation, but the price may be her love for Lucas
As an unforgettable love triangle emerges, Josephine Angelini’s compelling saga becomes ever more ... (more)