Gossamer by Lois Lowry.
First, I must say that I am such a fan of Lowry’s that I probably am not being critical when I read her books. I have enjoyed all of her work to date, and continually look forward to her next book. So realize that this is a review written by a real fan.
Littlest One is a tiny, invisible spirit who is training to be a dream-giver. With her teacher, she learns to lightly touch items throughout the house she is assigned and bestow memories as dreams. Her first teacher, Fastidious, is unable to handle Littlest One’s energy and questions. Her next teacher, Thin Elderly does much better. Together Littlest One and Thin Elderly witness as a young boy arrives at the home of an elderly lady. The boy is filled with anger and memories that are less than pleasant, so the dream-givers struggle to find enough positive things to touch to fill his dreams. But as he spends more and more time with the woman, he starts to create positive memories there. What will happen though, when he is targeted by the evil Sinisteeds who bring awful tormenting dreams? Will Littlest One and Thin Elderly be able to help him through it?
I enjoyed entering Lowry’s imagination again. The idea of tiny beings who bestow sweet dreams to us is very appealing and magical. The characters are vividly rendered from the humans to the dream-givers. In Lowry’s distinctive writing style, we are carried into this story with complete belief that it is true and real. The depiction of a loving foster care giver is especially effective and the example of abuse used is both horrifying and at the right level for children to understand. Share this one with children who enjoy fantasy without dragons and knights or with children who enjoyed the Great Gilly Hopkins. It is another winner in Lowry’s body of work.