Rosa Sophia divides her time between South Florida and Pennsylvania. She edits for publishers and independent clients, holds a degree in Automotive Technology, and enjoys running, hiking, collecting comic books, and traveling.
Nina Archer battlesmemories of a trauma that occurred twelve years ago. With plans to move toNorth Carolina, she hopes to separate herself from her mother, whose excessivedrinking is becoming unbearable. Then suddenly, fate steps in to help her healin a way she would never think possible. While running a race in Juno Beach,Nina finds herself next to a man whom she’s immediately attracted to. WesLadner, the same man she dreamt about one year ago. Wes is focused on hiswriting, and has no time for a woman. But the night before they met, he dreamtof Nina. Although they come from two very different worlds neither of them candeny the sparks that fly between them. As her time runs out to make a decision,Nina wonders if she’s been given the chance to come to terms with her past, andaccept a gift that some never receive—true love.
Review by Ramona
I never expected that Rosa Sophia would write about such a heavy topic in When I Dream of You. The blurb itself sounds adult, yet entertaining, but it's dealing with a subject that most try to not even think about. Yet rape, sexual abuse, physical and mental abuse, and alcoholism are prevalent problems worldwide. With all the people affected by them, it's a wonder that not enough is being done about it. Books that talk about it are a great help though, and I'd willingly promote any that would make more people aware of these horrible situations.
Nina was abused from a young age, first by an alcoholic widowed mother, then by a friend. She'd been bullied and undergone traumas that other people can't even imagine. Everything's failed, including her therapist, so now she's just coping with it and hoping the next day would be a better normal.
Running is her therapy, allowing herself to block out any negativism and simply get lost in the mechanical rhythms of her pace. During one of these runs, she meets someone who seems familiar, someone she's dreamt about before. And strangely enough, Wes sees the familiar in her too, having dreamt of her as well. What are the chances? This does seem like it's fated to happen.
But Nina has a deeper problem. She doesn't believe in fate, or in love either. Despite being literally the man of her dreams, it's hard for her to trust in herself enough that their budding relationship won't fail or that Wes won't be destroyed because of her.
Rapists aren't always older predators, neither are they seedy-looking monsters. They're usually an innocuous person, unmemorable, or worse, a close associate. They could be an upstanding member of society, a classmate, or workmate. These seemingly innocent people are experts at hiding behind masks, pretending they're perfect and all is right with the world, while their victims are trapped in nightmares that seemingly have no end.
Sexual abuse is a blight on society and always will be. It's not something new, yet is so taboo that most try to bury the memories, pretend they don't exist. It doesn't matter whether the perpetrator is doing something illegal, it's the power behind them that makes it disappear which allows them to continue, and harm, and hurt again. While there are those working against it, more often than not it's a skeleton that most families hide in shame or denial.
All of that, including the results of untreated trauma, are discussed but no judgements are made. It's up to the reader to decide what works although Nina has apparently found what helps her. When I Dream of You, despite being a novella, goes remarkably in-depth, where Rosa Sophia draws you into a world that hopefully less people will need to endure if society could only do what is right.