Bad Dreams

Book Review

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Most of the zines I get are numbered; with this particular one, I am lucky to have copy #3 out of 50. Bad Dreams is a story written and photographed by J. A. Fields, edited by Jasmine Ramos, with modelling done by Angelo Auriemma.

A thin, all-monochrome 20-page booklet, printed on ~30lb coated paper with a light cardboard cover, Bad Dreams makes for a quick read.

The reason I think this mini publication is particularly interesting is the author’s emphasis on the written word storytelling. Most of the self-published books I review here are either collections of photographs, tied together by a theme, or group photo anthologies. Bad Dreams is a story that reads like it’s been conceptualized and written first with the photos meant to add a second layer subsequently.

Bad Dreams is narrated in the first person — unclear if fictional, real, or a little bit of both — by a character who has a reoccurring nightmare that follows him through the waking world. It has all the elements of a well-written plot, along with a cryptic ending that opens up to the reader’s interpretation.

As of this writing, Bad Dreams is still available at J. A. Fields’ website for $10.