Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor – Review

Strange the Dreamer by Laini TaylorSummary:

The dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around—and Lazlo Strange, war orphan and junior librarian, has always feared that his dream chose poorly. Since he was five years old he’s been obsessed with the mythic lost city of Weep, but it would take someone bolder than he to cross half the world in search of it. Then a stunning opportunity presents itself, in the person of a hero called the Godslayer and a band of legendary warriors, and he has to seize his chance or lose his dream forever.

What happened in Weep two hundred years ago to cut it off from the rest of the world? What exactly did the Godslayer slay that went by the name of god? And what is the mysterious problem he now seeks help in solving?

The answers await in Weep, but so do more mysteries—including the blue-skinned goddess who appears in Lazlo’s dreams. How did he dream her before he knew she existed? And if all the gods are dead, why does she seem so real?

Welcome to Weep


Review: 5 stars

This is a book that I have wanted to read for a long time. Strange the Dreamer won science fiction and fantasy book of the year and that was no surprise after reading it. This is the kind of book that reminds you why you love to read. This book is a treat. Strange the Dreamer is a magical love story. I found myself in absolute awe of this story. The writing, the character, the magical world and all of the symbolism all comes together exceptionally well to weave this masterpiece.

The characters are molded so well and I absolutely loved them. Each character, even the ones that do evil have so many sides to them that you understand their motives. The character development is incredible, I feel as if I know each character in the story. Lazlo and Sarai are both incredible to read about. The symmetry in their natures has you feeling like they belong together from the very start. Lazlo being Strange the Dreamer and Sarai being the Muse of Nightmares makes the pair of them feel like a destiny fated to be together. Lazlo loves fairytales and worked at a library, losing his mind dreaming in books. While Sarai is more of a beautifully dark character who is wounded mentally by her gift to change dreams into nightmares. The romance between the two is a perfect balance of opposites. The build up of their relationship is so full of romance and feels so real where I feel most other novels are just full of lusty relationships. The relationship between Sarai and Lazlo feels like true love.

The plot doesn’t move fast, but it didn’t matter because the writing was so incredible that I only wanted the book to be longer. The world building was incredibly genius and so imaginative. At no point is there information dumping where the whole fantasy world is thrown at you,, but rather Laini Taylor slowly builds the fantasy piece by piece, bringing magic slowly to life. There is also a plot twist that I never saw coming. It left me reeling and I am so glad that I waited to read this book, otherwise I could never wait for the sequel.

The best piece of the whole book is definitely the writing itself. Laini Taylor’s writing is magical in itself. Her flowing descriptions bring this unique fantasy world to life. There is a reason that she is so idolized as a fantasy author and it is because she makes magic feel real. Her descriptions and world building are so vivid. Her imagination is like nothing else. In comparison it is like other books are watching a movie in black and white, but reading one of Laini Taylor’s novels is like watching a movie in bright and vivid color. 5 stars is not enough to tell you how great this book is.


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