5 Reasons Why You Need Strange the Dreamer

March 17, 2017 by Jeann @ Happy Indulgence | 5 stars, Books, Reviews

5 Reasons Why You Need Strange the DreamerStrange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
Published by Hodder & Stoughton on March 28th 2017
Source: Publisher
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Fantasy & Magic
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A brand new, heart-stopping novel and the first in a thrilling duology from the much-loved author of the DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE trilogy, 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?
In this sweeping and breathtaking new novel by National Book Award finalist Laini Taylor, author of the New York Times bestselling Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy, the shadow of the past is as real as the ghosts who haunt the citadel of murdered gods. Fall into a mythical world of dread and wonder, moths and nightmares, love and carnage.

If you’re going to pick up a book this year, let it be Strange the Dreamer. It is monstrous, mystical, magical and everything you’ve ever dreamed of and what better storyteller to bring it to life than Laini Taylor. In case you’re not convinced enough, here’s 5 reasons why you need it in your life now.

1. A mysterious world of wonder and ruin

Imagine if your favourite book world could come to life and you’ll not only be able to see it, but you’ll be able to experience the mystery and the wonder yourself. That is what Strange the Dreamer is about, particularly for Lazlo Strange, a librarian and a dreamer who has dedicated his life to studying the world of Weep. With a world centred around dreams and mystical elements, I loved learning about the world of Weep and the goddesses and heroes that lived in it. It meshes the modern world with a fantasy one that feels like an Ancient Greek legend and 500 pages of it wasn’t enough to satisfy my curiosity.

2. A librarian with a heart of gold

As a librarian who lives within stories, I immediately connected to Lazlo Strange and his obsession with a world that he’s only dreamed about. He is someone who is inherently good, who helps out and does the right thing for people who don’t deserve his help, simply because he believes it’s the right thing to do. While he believes himself to be lesser than others, Lazlo’s strength is his character who is humble, endearing, believes in justice and equality. I loved the interactions with his nemesis Thyon, who as a Prince, is on a higher social rung than him and gifted in every sense of the word.

3. An antagonistic alchemist with a dark past

Thyon was also a fascinating character, as royalty who has everything handed down to him on a silver platter. It was interesting seeing who he was in the eyes of a commoner such as Lazlo, but also seeing behind closed doors, the pressure his parents force upon him to be nothing short of perfect. He’s arrogant and gifted, and completely indebted to Lazlo which he absolutely hates. I wanted to pick up the broken shards of Thyon as he threw everything into his work so he could prove to be the best.

4. A blue-skinned goddess who invades dreams

The story isn’t just made up of these two enigmatic boys, there’s also the blue-skinned Mesarthim gods and goddesses who have gone through horrors in the world of Weep. With no one to cling onto but themselves, even with their flaws and familial conflicts, they each had attributes and characteristics which were completely compelling. Each of them had powers that were so mystical that you could only dream of their powers, but my hands down favourite was Sarai who was the Muse of Nightmares. As the daughter of the Goddess of Despair, Sarai has large footsteps to fill, but it’s her empathy that makes all the difference. She has the power to destroy the will and nature of humans, but instead, she uses it to learn about them and realise that they’re not so different to herself.

5. A beautifully written, intricate storyline

Only Laini Taylor could create such an imaginative world filled with mystery and wonder, one that puts such beautiful imagery in your head with characters that permeate your mind. At it’s heart, Strange the Dreamer will appeal to every reader, because it brings to life a story that a reader has only dreamed about. It dispels the myth of perfection, unravels the mysteries of the world and reveals the finer, darker intricacies of the world. Reading the book makes you believe that all things could be possible, crossing the lines between dreams and reality and realising that there’s very little distinction between the two. While the pacing was quite slow, this is a book you have to experience to really grasp it’s intricate beauty.

There’s a lot more I could say about Strange the Dreamer, but the best part of reading the book is discovering the world, what happens with these strange characters and their journey into the mysterious world of Weep. I lavished every word and every page, because of how beautifully it was written. Reading Strange the Dreamer was like unravelling this mysterious package filled with layers and layers of beauty and imagination.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Thanks Hachette Australia for sending me this book for review!

Strange the Dreamer will be released in Australian bookstores on March 28 for RRP$19.99.

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Jeann is an Aussie YA blogger and mum who loves to read and recommend books! You can usually find me fangirling about books on my various social media channels including Tiktok@happyindulgence, Instagram and Youtube.

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38 responses to “5 Reasons Why You Need Strange the Dreamer

  1. Kelly in Hali

    I don't think I needed any reason to pick this up because LAINI TAYLOR! But you've given me 5 solid reasons that means I'll probably be rushing out to buy this tomorrow instead of waiting around for a sale haha

  2. fullybookedreviews

    This is a novel I'm really going to savour. So looking forward to it! Laini's worldbuilding is, well, out of this world, pardon the pun.

  3. Fantastic review! I'm really excited to read this one, Laini Taylor's other books have been great and her writing is pure magic. It sounds like the characters in this book are very well fleshed out!

  4. I am dying to read this book. I fell madly in love with Daughter of Smoke and Bone when I read it, and I can't wait to read more of Laini Taylor! And so far, the reviews seem to hint that the book is not going to disappoint me, so I am just so excited about this one!

    • YESSs, if you loved DOSAB there is no doubt that you will love this one too! Her writing is incredible and the world is so atmospheric! I hope you get to pick it up soon Mishma!

  5. Kara

    If I wasn't already insanely excited for this book… Everything I hear about it just sounds so incredibly AMAZING!! I've been in such a huge reading rut lately (hence my lack of blogging…or anything, really) but I might turn to this one to get me out. You've inspired me. 😉

    • Oh Kara, I have missed your posts and comments so much! I'm so glad to hear that this book sounds exciting. I hope it brings your reading mojo back!

  6. scififantasylitchick

    Count me intrigued! I've always wanted to check out Taylor's writing but her "Daughter of Smoke and Bone" trilogy just didn't appeal to me (story-wise, not writing-wise). But this new offering sounds fantastic.. Thanks for the great review! I can't wait to read this. 🙂

  7. Michelle

    I'm super excited for this one, and your review made me want to read it even more! GREAT reasons, and now I am super intrigued 🙂

  8. Anisha

    I am so excited to read my ARC soon! I have heard such amazing things about this so YAY I hope I enjoy it as much as I enjoyed DOSAB! Great to hear you loved it Jeann!

  9. kris

    I NEED THIS BOOK. but I already have so many I need to read. And this comes out soon, and it has a librarian in it. Now, I must binge read a bunch of things to justify this impending purchase 😛 I've been anticipating this for so long and I'm so excited for it, so I'm glad to hear you liked it so much!

  10. Cyn @ Bookmunchies

    Okay so I'm that lame person who hasn't read Taylor yet but I obviously need to fix that ASAP! You definitely have me intrigued, Jeann! All the reasons are amazing but seriously, #2 and 3!! I need. Awesome review, Jeann!

  11. Ali (@thebandarblog)

    YAY!! SO glad you loved this! I am eager to see more reviews of it, but it definitely sounds like a book I am going to want to read.

  12. Crushingcinders

    This is my most anticipated book this year and it has had very little publicity. I loved the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series so much. I actually carried the girst book around with me for a week because I wasn't ready to leave their world. Great review. Can't wait for the end of March.

    • I know, I'm surprised by how little hype it's gotten in comparison to some other books. I have only read the 1st DOSAB and I'm excited that there's more waiting for me to lavish. Thank you!

  13. I need to read my copy soon! Her writing is intimidating but as a reader, I feel like her books should be required reading just because no one should miss something the experience. It looks like she's up to her old tricks. This woman can conjure the most fantastical world, evoking wondrous emotions, and serve us with interesting characters we'll soon not forget.

    • This book is so incredible Joy! Her writing seems to have gotten better with every book, and it was flawless in Strange the Dreamer. It really felt beautiful and transportative you know? I can't wait to hear what you think of it!

  14. booksbonesbuffy

    I'm so excited to read this, especially after your review. I pre-ordered the UK edition because I love that cover so much more than the US. So happy to read your glowing review!

  15. Angel @Angel Reads

    Yep, Yep and Yep. Haha. It was so hard to write my review for this one, because I loved it all too much. Thanks for your review.

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