by Steve High
With father gone, Daniel must spend the summer in the Arkansas hills while mother cares for his dying grandmother. Before he begins this dreadful trip something happens to further change his course. A man who died over 50 years ago visits Daniel in his dreams. With a message of secrets hidden in the past, a world of mystery and hope open up to him.
Baker Dreams is fiction, full of history, magic, and mystery. Come with Daniel on his journey and learn about Norman Baker.
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A review by Pamela M. Glasnapp, Ph.D.
If you wanted to write a magical realism tale for young adults, you couldn’t do better than to place it in Eureka Springs. Author Steven High came to compose his first novel, however, through a different route. After having visited the historic (1886) Crescent Hotel, an elegant Victorian building riddled with both history and mystery, High sought more information on Norman Baker, a ‘celebrity’ of the 30’s who had set up the Baker Cancer Hospital, a nonconventional treatment center that took advantage of the spa in the hotel. Famous as an inventor, showman, and his self-promoting radio broadcasts, Baker was a controversial figure, appealing to the last hopes of the cancer patients. Finding no biographies, Steve High set out to discover for himself just who this Dr. Baker was. The result is a wonderful, engaging book, featuring a grieving young teen, Daniel McKenna, who is propelled into a search for the same Dr. Baker, but discovers something more important in the end. Mr. High pulls the reader in from the historical biography in the preface, to Daniel’s personal discoveries in the end. As for me, I am left with a new itch to revisit Eureka Springs and see the Crescent Hotel for myself, and hoping for a second novel from the talented Mr. High.