Fat Dreams

Fiction - Visionary
584 Pages
Reviewed on 07/17/2019
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Idris Ostrovsky was born in the foggy Pacific Northwest, the children of Ukrainian immigrants. A lifelong introvert blessed with a small-town upbringing, Idris discovered his passion for writing in grade school. In his late-teens, Idris began writing his first full-length novel, fusing together the endless inspiration offered by psychedelic music, 90s-era video games, and the writings of HP Lovecraft. After finishing college in Seattle, Idris returned to his beloved hometown, where he recently finished writing, editing, and publishing his first novel, Fat Dreams. Idris lives alone, busy writing his next novel, and posting miscellaneous writings on his website idrisostrovsky.com.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite

Fat Dreams by Idris Ostrovsky is a novel about an aging man’s journey towards self-discovery and self-love. I thought the theme and the atmosphere of the story would be very grim and dark, but it was actually very positive. Although the pace of the novel is slow, it doesn’t deter the reader. The pace is almost soothing in a way that lulled me into reading on. Instead of feeling bored or sleepy, I actually became more invested in the protagonist’s journey, his growth and the way he was simply evolving. The narrative takes you on a journey that you wish would never end, especially when the protagonist has reached a point where he is accepting and digesting and just moving forward. The imagery is so descriptive, the sentences are very crisp and the story itself is very entertaining.

This is the story of Professor Leopold Traum, a brilliant professor who goes on a journey of a lifetime to discover himself. He started the journey to Ythvk, the most mysterious of the desert tribes, in the name of scientific exploration and knowledge. However, he soon realizes that this is more than just gaining more knowledge. He has to fight for his survival, look for ways to secure himself, feed himself, and find out what he is really made of. He has to fight his own darkness and has to face a side of life that he never anticipated. He left the comfort of his home to find some mysterious tribes, but in the end, he actually found himself.

Ruffina Oserio

Fat Dreams by Idris Ostrovsky is partly adventure and part enlightenment. We follow the protagonist, Professor Leopold Traum of Mayhaven as he sets out on an expedition, leaving the comforts of his familiar landscapes behind, to visit the Ythvk. The Ythvk is the most enigmatic of the desert tribes. But this journey turns out to be something more than a daring quest for knowledge because the challenges of an unfriendly environment and the crude reality of life force the professor to face his very nature. It becomes a journey of survival and the protagonist must change the way he sees himself and the world if he has to survive.

This is a deftly plotted and well-written novel that follows a spiritual path that is also physical. It is intriguing how the author’s physical contact and experience of the desert transforms his inner world. Idris Ostrovsky’s writing is very rich and highly perceptive, and it is interesting to follow the rich imagery, to see the path that leads from outside into the very soul of the protagonist, where curiosity transforms into knowledge and where puzzles become paths the protagonist must travel. The setting is well imagined and captured in descriptions that are apt and vivid, making it easy for readers to imagine where the story takes place, to feel the weather, like the relentless downpour at the opening pages of the book or the arid landscapes of the desert. Fat Dreams is written in language filled with symbolism and features a character that reflects the restless human spirit.

K.C. Finn

Fat Dreams is a work of alternative nineteenth-century style fiction set in another world and penned by author Idris Ostrovsky. Set initially in the city-state of Mayhaven, this supernatural style work of weird fiction charts the incredible journey of would-be explorer Professor Leopold Traum as he ventures out to the unknown desert tribe, the Ythvk. So begins a physically arduous and deeply personal journey of discovery for Leopold, who learns that his aging mind is still open to the wonder of new places and people, and to the effect that his chosen path will have on his soul in the process of getting there.

The quality of the prose in Fat Dreams is immediately evident for its lush imagery, vivid use of a variety of sensory and descriptive techniques, and the clean sentence construction that keeps the work easy to read, even when things get pretty surreal. Author Idris Ostrovsky has a clear adoration for the whimsy of Lovecraftian style storytelling, but the techniques utilized to tell Leopold’s transformative journey are modernized enough to draw in all readers and give them an accessible homage to weird fiction and otherworldly adventures. Because of this, the plot is multi-layered, giving way to well-paced moments of reflection that keep the pace slow and steady. Readers who enjoy psychological works and the more modern ‘road trip’ style novels are certain to devour the long nights and days of Ostrovsky’s desert epiphanies. Overall, Fat Dreams is an accomplished novel sure to leave fans with their heads full of deep, reflective thoughts.

Christian Sia

Fat Dreams by Idris Ostrovsky is a fascinating story that follows the spiritual odyssey of the protagonist as he discovers the mystery of himself while exploring the vast desert. When Professor Leopold Traum leaves home to visit the Ythvk, the mysterious tribes of the desert, it is partly out of curiosity and a hunger for scientific research. Little does he know that the journey will test him in many ways and alter the way he sees himself and the world around him. Fat Dreams is set in another world and in another time, and in a setting that evokes austerity and physical challenges.

This is a beautifully written story. I was hooked from the very start by the unique narrative voice, a voice I couldn’t ignore; at times nonchalant and humorous, yet not lacking the thread that keeps the reader focused. The elements of the setting are beautifully captured in the narrative and nature as well as places take on a life of their own. An example is the interesting description of Portsmouth Corner, where the weather is questionable. “It seemed it only ever stopped raining for no other reason than to lend a renewed sense of drama to the next downpour.” The language is exceptionally good and the author's sense of humor adds to the unique storytelling skills to create a reading experience that is delightful. This is a simple story with deep layers. The characters, especially the protagonist, are well developed and multidimensional. Fat Dreams is well-plotted, moderately paced, and filled with insightful passages that provoke reflection in readers.