Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Release Date: 28th March 2017
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.
I always find writing reviews for books I love the hardest, but if I could just sum this whole post up with one sentence it would be: STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING, AND GO READ THE BOOK.
For the purpose of this review I will try to calm down my inner fangirl, but overall I think Strange the Dreamer is quite possibly the most enjoyable and stunning fantasy that I have ever read, and I don’t have a clue how Laini Taylor came up with such a creative, original and beautiful story, but I am so grateful that she did.
It was refreshing to read a fantasy from a male protagonist’s POV, especially from one as kind and pure as Lazlo – a junior librarian with a wild fascination over the mystery of a forgotten city called Weep. To make things better, we also get to read from Sarai’s POV – a trapped Godspawn with a bizarre yet brilliant gift. Every single character felt complex, authentic, and fleshed out – Laini Taylor will make you care so much for them, and that really helps to drive the story because you can’t help but feel invested in the outcome.
I went into this not knowing much/anything about the plot, but the first line of the blurb “The dream chooses the dreamer” just spoke to me (maybe because it reminds me of “The wand chooses the wizard” from Harry Potter 😅). But I do believe it is best to go into this book not really knowing what to expect because the whole story is unraveled so delicately, that I feel like anything I comment on could be classed as a spoiler in some form.
One thing I will say, that may be seen as a negative (But surprisingly, had no effect on my opinion of the book), was that this was definitely a slow read for me. It took me almost a month to finish, and I couldn’t understand at the time why it was taking me so long to read because I was undeniably invested in the characters, the writing style and the direction that the plot was taking etc… But looking back now, I think the writing style was partly the reason it took me so long to finish it. This is the first piece of work by Laini Taylor that I’ve read, and I found her writing style very distinctive which required a lot of attention – and I promise this is not a complaint at all – but it might be worth noting that finishing this book took a lot out of me and left me in a mini reading slump because of its length, high attention to detail, and the careful pacing of the story.
I’m sure most of you have either read or plan to read Strange the Dreamer, but if by some miracle you haven’t heard about it yet, I could not recommend it more!
Now the painful wait for Muse of Nightmares begins…
What did you think of Strange the Dreamer? How excited are you for the sequel?
If you’ve not read it yet, is it on your TBR?
Have you read any other books by Laini Taylor?