Staff Review: Hugo and Rose by Bridget Foley

Hugo and RoseReviewed by Jen

From Kirkus Reviews:

“A debut novel that uses the world of dreams to upend the life of an otherwise ordinary housewife.

Since Rose was 6 years old she has dreamed every night of the same place: a magical island on which the only other person is a boy named Hugo. In her dreams, Hugo and Rose grow into adults at the same rate that Rose grows in real life, but everything else on the island stays much the same, and they adventure blissfully together each time she sleeps. But by the time Rose is a mother with three small children and a surgeon husband who is rarely home, she starts to resent her waking life. On the island, she’s still svelte, energetic, and happy—her best self. At home, she’s overweight, overworked, and overtired. On a particularly rough day, when nothing is going well, she chances upon Hugo in the real world. Like Rose, this version of Hugo bears the markings of real life—he is older, paunchy, and has glasses. But Rose knows it’s him and soon he knows it’s her, as well. The two discover that the dreams have been shared all along.”

Jen’s thoughts: I was relieved to see this story avoid the more obvious romantic plotline. There is no easy way out for anyone here. Things quickly takes a dark and depressing turn as world collide, demonstrating very aptly that fantasy and reality don’t mix. Compelling read.

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