Book Review: Strange The Dreamer by Laini Taylor
Strange The Dreamer by Laini Taylor
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 to 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?
Strange The Dreamer:
I received an earc of Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor from Hachette Australia via NetGalley for review. This has in no way influenced my thoughts and feelings about the book.
Strange the Dreamer was one of my most anticipated books of the year and I wasn’t disappointed. The world is magical and intriguing, the characters are addicting and the writing just pulls you right in. When you start you are in for a ride and it’s breathtaking.
Strange the Dreamer follows Lazlo Strange and Sarai. Both from very different worlds, very different situations. They have been brought up to believe very different things and I was intrigued by both of them.
Lazlo is the guy that wins my heart. I adored his love for books and learning and finding out more. Lazlo is very innocent and I loved seeing that, it’s rare that we see a male character in YA that is obvious to the world and how things work. His lived with monks his whole life, and things like girls and the outside world are way over his head. But, as Strange the Dreamer went on, the reader is able to see Lazlo grow. He doesn’t just start to trust and believe in himself, but others around him. Lazlo character development throughout the novel was excellent and I am hanging to see where his character goes.
Sarai was hard to connect with at first, but as the novel went on and more is revealed, I began to love her. Sarai much like Lazlo is very innocent in a way. Yes, Sarai has witness some horrible events and being brought up without an ‘adult’ it’s hard for her. But, like Lazlo, she lacks human interaction. What I also loved about Sarai is that she isn’t the ‘strong’ protagonist, but she also isn’t the damsel is distress either – she had to hold her ground.
I don’t think that Laini Taylor can ever go wrong with the worlds that she builds. At first, it’s always hard to grasp, but as the novels go on, everything falls into place. With so many layers, I don’t know how she can’t get lost, however as a reader you are dropped in and taken to another place and it doesn’t feel wrong. I love how we don’t find out everything out at once, however, it was ever so slightly info-dumpy in the first couple of chapters – nothing major.
I loved the many aspects of the world and how we didn’t miss out on much because we are with two protagonists in different sides of this world. We meet lots of characters that all have different stories to tell. This was sometimes a little hard to come around – because there were so many characters. However as the novel went on, I figured out who was who most of the time.
One of those characters was Minya – and holy she was crazy. But, so intriguing all at the same time. In saying that, the whole ‘family’ was intriguing all I wanted to do is find out more.
The romance side of Strange the Dreamer wasn’t exactly my favourite as it was a little instalovey, but holy was it good. I didn’t just fall in love with Lazlo and Sarai individually, but together. My heart. I loved that they were innocent but explored at the same time. I loved how they interacted and how beautiful it was.
At first, I found Strange the Dreamer to be a little slow, not heavily, but just enough that I wanted a little jump start. But as soon as things started to pick up, I was absorbed and couldn’t stop myself from reading.
Not only does Strange the Dreamer have a beautiful world and characters, the writing is exquisite. You are not only taking to a different world, with the book, but the writing carries you along the way.
The ending. I don’t want to talk about it. Can I forget that it has happened? Can I believe that everything will be a-okay in the next book? Probably not and I cannot wait.
Overall, Strange the Dreamer was addicting. It explores the notion of family, friendship and finding out who you are. With a world that is built with layer upon layer, you will be begging to find out more. With its beautiful writing and characters that will take you by storm, it’s an adventure you want to be on. Strange the Dreamer is poignant, heart-stopping and you will not be able to put it down.
Trigger Warning: Just a little warning for the book, there is mention of rape and suicide. Nothing overly graphic, but there is some scenes where it is talked about.
Have you read Strange the Dreamer yet? What did you think of it? Are you planning on reading it? Have you read other Laini Taylor books before? Let’s Chat!