The Dream Runners (Hardcover)
A lush tapestry of dreams, myth, and magic—perfect for fans of Holly Black, Roshani Chokshi, and Margaret Rogerson.
Seven years ago, Tanvi was spirited away to the subterranean realm of Nagalok, where she joined the ranks of the dream runners: human children freed of all memory and emotion, who collect mortal dreams for the entertainment of the serpentine, immortal naga court.
But when one of Tanvi’s dream harvests goes awry, she begins to remember her life on earth. Panicked and confused, she turns to the one mortal in Nagalok who might be able to help: Venkat, the dreamsmith responsible for collecting the dream runners’ wares and shaping them into the kingdom’s most tantalizing commodity. And as they search for answers, a terrifying truth begins to take shape—one that could turn the nagas’ realm of dreams into a land of waking nightmare.
From the author of the Indie Next selection and Andre Norton Award finalist Star Daughter, this stand-alone contemporary fantasy, inspired by the nagas and garudas of Hindu mythology, is full of slow-burning romance, haunting intrigue, and shimmering magic.
Shveta Thakrar is a part-time nagini and full-time believer in magic. Her work has appeared in a number of magazines and anthologies, including Enchanted Living, Uncanny Magazine, A Thousand Beginnings and Endings, and Toil & Trouble. Her debut young adult fantasy novel, Star Daughter, was a finalist for the 2021 Andre Norton Nebula Award, and her second and third novels, The Dream Runners and Divining the Leaves, take place in the same universe. Her adult fantasy novella, Into the Moon Garden, is available as an original audiobook from Audible. When not spinning stories about spider silk and shadows, magic and marauders, and courageous girls illuminated by dancing rainbow flames, Shveta crafts, devours books, daydreams, travels, bakes, and occasionally even plays her harp.
“Shveta Thakrar spirits you away to a richly imagined dream of a fantasy!” — Xiran Jay Zhao, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Iron Widow
“Utterly unique, The Dream Runners uses magnificent world-building to explore how much of our own stories we can change.” — Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Wish You Were Here
“The Dream Runners is a novel greater than the sum of its (already vast and sparkling) parts—an emotionally resonant and supremely satisfying read.” — Camille DeAngelis, Alex Award–winning author of Bones & All
“Multifaceted characters, a splash of romance, and complex, intriguing worldbuilding deliver an engaging fantasy read.” — Publishers Weekly
“A lush fantasy.” — Kirkus Reviews
Praise for Star Daughter: "Take a journey to the heavenly courts in this luscious, shimmering fantasy, so dripping with beauty and imagination you’ll want to eat it with a spoon.” — New York Times bestselling author Laini Taylor
"My favorite tales are the ones that sneakily draw you out of one world and slip you into the next. This is one of those. I emerged from Star Daughter dusted with constellations and wonder. Thakrar's imagination is a feast for the senses." — Roshani Chokshi, New York Times bestselling author of The Star-Touched Queen and The Gilded Wolves
“Nothing short of dazzling.” — Booklist
"Absolutely magical and captivatingly lyrical." — Sandhya Menon, New York Times bestselling author of When Dimple Met Rishi
“Shveta Thakrar's prose is as beautiful as starlight.” — Holly Black, New York Times bestselling author
“An enchanting story about love, family, finding your voice, and searching for home. Thakrar’s sparkling command of language weaves magic on every page. This book is a joy, and will speak to anyone who yearns to belong.” — Claire Legrand, New York Times bestselling author of Furyborn and Kingsbane
“A magical debut full of wonder, wit, myths, and adventure. Reading Thakrar's words is like swimming through the most beautiful imagination—every page is a delight." — Natasha Ngan, New York Times bestselling author of Girls of Paper and Fire
"A gorgeously written tale of magic and family, of finding and fighting for your place, Star Daughter has a heart that shines as brilliantly as its celestial court." — S. A. Chakraborty, author of the bestselling Daevabad Trilogy
“Full of wonder and enchantment. Thakrar has crafted an excellent story about the power of the younger generations to carve their own path amidst the traditions and expectations of their elders.” — Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
"Shveta Thakrar’s writing shines as bright as any star." — Laura Sebastian, New York Times bestselling author of the Ash Princess series
“Luminously beautiful, with a mythic heart.” — Tasha Suri, author of Empire of Sand
“Absolutely magical. Thakrar weaves her words so tightly around you that you are completely immersed in her world, a victim of its lyrical starsong.” — Ellen Oh, author of the Prophecy series and editor of A Thousand Beginnings and Endings
“Radiant. Readers will be enchanted by Sheetal and the starry court.” — Kristen Ciccarelli, internationally bestselling author of The Last Namsara
“A wondrous delight, Shveta Thakrar’s debut is a feast for the senses." — Cindy Pon, author of Want and Serpentine
“Star Daughter is a love letter to every desi girl wanting to believe in her own magic.” — Tanaz Bhathena, author of A Girl Like That and Hunted by the Sky
“A dreamy, diasporic, diverse fantasy. A story about stars, yes—and about family, friends, falling in love, and finding your voice, your place. Places. A shimmering debut.” — Tanuja Desai Hidier, author of Born Confused and sequel Bombay Blues
“A luminous debut. Star Daughter’s sparkling coming-of-age tale of transformation and love is among the best kinds of fantasy: one that reminds us to reach for the stars while keeping our feet firmly on the ground.” — Fran Wilde, Nebula Award-winning author of The Bone Universe series and Riverland
“A stunning tale of self-acceptance, family, and liminal spaces.” — Jacqueline Koyanagi