cover image Another Dimension of Us

Another Dimension of Us

Mike Albo. Penguin Workshop, $18.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-593-22376-5

Two teens living in different times connect through dreams to battle a mysterious evil in this ambitious speculative romance by Albo (Hornito: My Lie Life, for adults). In 1986, white-cued Tommy Gaye, who is fearful of the homophobia exhibited by his peers, hides his feelings for his Argentinian best friend, Renaldo “René” Calabasas. After purportedly being struck by lightning, René returns to school following a hospital stay with what Tommy perceives is a completely different personality. Meanwhile, in 2044, adopted Pris, who “was covered in birthmarks that made her look striped,” yearns to learn more about her birth family’s history. Their stories become intertwined when Tommy unlocks an ability to “dream travel” and appears to Pris in her sleep. Guided by the manifestation of the Lollipop Crunch cereal mascot, lollipop man, and aided by several powerful entities, the teens work together to master their abilities over the astral plane and save their loved ones. The narrative’s myriad alternating perspectives and well-plotted timeline smartly propel intense action, and references to the AIDS crisis and an unnamed 2044 virus grounds this imaginative telling in contemporary reality. Ages 12–up. (Jan.)