Contemporary, Fantasy, Fiction
Lee Mi Ye
Dollagut's Dream Department Store, Book # 1
April 21, 2020
May 1, 2023 May 7, 2023
10 Books in Translation in 2023, Reading by the Numbers, Translated Book Goals
Penny is in great trepidation: she is about to have an interview with the famous Mr. Dollagut, the enlightened owner of the Department Store of Dreams, the most coveted four-story store in the city. A completely unique place where you can only enter when you are asleep and where only dreams are sold. Dreams of all kinds, for all tastes, organised by sections: dreams related to the small pleasures of life or memories of special moments, exclusive dreams that allow you to meet those who are no longer there, dreams dedicated to naps for animals and children, limited editions and timeless bestsellers sold at special prices. After an enigmatic interview in which Dollagut questions her about the meaning of her dreams, Penny is hired, but her euphoria gives way to her despondency when she finds herself literally overwhelmed by the amount of customers who storm the shelves every day of the department store. As she learns to orient herself alongside her more expert colleagues, she also discovers the secret that makes the Department Store of Dreams such a special place: the magical function that every dream brings with it, the ability to awaken buried emotions, to bring to life sensations never experienced, and very often to overcome traumas, such as mourning or the end of a love story. Among the clients chasing dreams, Penny will meet Jeong A-young, who takes refuge in dreams to escape loneliness, looking for a spark that can warm her heart, or Hyeon Jong-seok, who seeks confirmation in dreams that he is ready to love again. She will learn that a premonitory dream, like having a baby, is a small foray into the future, and that even nightmares are precious allies in overcoming a critical moment in life.
About the book
This book, at this date hasn’t an English translation.
It would be nice to be able to buy dreams so that we only dream what we want. In this world you can. There is a large warehouse of several floors where while sleeping you wander around the city until you get to the reception of the warehouse of the dreams. And here you can choose what to buy. Not always though.
Penny gets a job at the dream department store and meets all kinds of people there. Sold dreams are of many kinds and slowly we discover people’s lives through their dreams.
What I think
I liked the book. I liked the concept of a warehouse visited by people while sleeping to buy their dreams. I liked the characters and also the correlations between some characters and their real counterparts even if at least one of them is not even real in reality.
The writing style is not complicated, within everyone’s reach but obviously I’ve read a translation so I don’t know what the original version is like.
The city in which the novel is set is very particular. In this city you arrive when you sleep so almost everyone is wearing pajamas and obviously there are also some exceptions, which in order not to cause a scandal, are covered by particular creatures covered in fur who give them dressing gowns which they then collect when people wake up.
It’s the first time I’ve read this author, maybe it’s the first time I’ve read a Korean author and I think I’ll read other produced by Mi Ye.