Title: Strange the Dreamer
Author: Laini Taylor
Publication Date: March 28, 2017
Genre(s): Young Adult, Fantasy
Source: Barnes and Noble, Book Depository, Audible
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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
Did you ever love a book, but forgot how much you LOVED the book? Yeah, that was me on this reread.
Strange the Dreamer is one of those books that somehow feels new and familiar on the reread. There were several instances of foreshadowing I caught on the reread that just added to some of the later reveals. And despite knowing all the major reveals, I was still shocked or emotional when we got to those parts of the book.
Okay, but enough about how this was a reread, let’s get to the review.
Lazlo — Lazlo is the definition of a cinnamon roll, oh my gosh. I honestly cannot get over how precious he is. That being said, he was also such fun main character. He was hilarious, intriguing, and a great character to follow along this epic journey with.
Sarai — I don’t want to talk about Sarai that much, as she’s such a fun character to discover along the way, but I will say that as our secondary main character, she added such a fun alternative perspective.
Thyon Nero — I didn’t realize we were getting a Greyjoy along for the ride, but here we are. Seriously, joking aside, he was such a fun character to love to hate. I completely understood his motivation and why he would give certain characters a hard time, but I also wanted to shake him and make him understand there was good.
Eril-Fane — Eril-Fane was such a complex, yet intriguing character, who really helped bring the underlying mythos of this story to life. Learning his backstory and motives really helped you understand the conflicting nature of his motives, and I’m still not sure who’s “side” I’m on.
As for the other characters, I can’t really talk about them without going into spoilers. I also feel like one of the best parts of this book is discovering everything with Lazlo, so I’m going to cut this section off here.
As for the plot of this one, I loved how slow-burn it was. I honestly was gripped from the start and loved allowing the story to develop over time. I know there are many people that thought it dragged, but that was not the case for me.
I personally think everything was given time to develop and time for the reader to enjoy this large cast of characters, learn about the history and mythos of Weep, and slowly figure out what would later be revealed.
I also love the use of foreshadowing in this book. Laini Taylor drops some hints as the story progresses to allow the reader to figure out some stuff around the same time (or before) the characters do.
Now, I’m not the right reviewer to go to for critiques on writing, as I usually know if I like or dislike it…and that’s about it. That being said, Laini Taylor has some of the most beautiful prose I think I’ve ever read.
She reminds me a bit of Dickens with how much detail she goes into bringing her world to life, but I never feel bored reading her descriptions.
Also, the humor in this book was pretty great.
Strange the Dreamer has been getting nothing but praise since its release last May, and I am definitely another reader to add to the love.
This is such a great example of beautiful prose, compelling plot, and such an amazing swoon worthy romance. Lazlo was claimed one of the coveted spots on my book boyfriend list (which is quite short at the moment) and I love him as a character so so much.
I feel like this is a book that you should go into blind and just experience, but also get an idea for what’s ahead as it’s quite different than other fantasy books that are popular at the moment.
This is also a book I can spend like 10,000 words gushing over, but I’m gonna not do that and try to keep this review under (or around) 1000 words.
But, if you love a fantasy that will truly transport you to a new and fantastical world, then PLEASE, pick up this book.