Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

by - January 07, 2021



Oh, well that was absolute perfection.

You ever read a book that just swept you away with its intense and immersive writing? A book that causes your heart to do that strange little flutter every time you read a sentence or entire paragraph that is just so beautiful? Strange the Dreamer was that book and so much more.

Before this book, I had had a tentative relationship with Laini Taylor. Truth be told, I was not a fan of Daughter of Smoke and Bone. In fact, I had planned to not pick up another Taylor book. But then this gorgeous book was sent to me by Jonathan Ball Publishers and I had no choice but to read another one of her books. 

And thank God for that because this book is magical.

I don't know where Laini found the imagination and talent to write something this beautiful but I applaud her for it. The writing, the characters, the world, and the story was so inventive and fresh. At the time, I had been struggling to connect with fantasy stories but Strange the Dreamer helped breathe new life into the fantasy genre, something I'm very thankful for. 

The story of Weep is an epic tale of heartbreak, war, bloodshed, and vengeance; all spinning together in a whirlwind of a novel that connects so many characters. Strange the Dreamer started off slow, like most epic fantasies do, but not once was I bored. Every page dripped with intrigue and mystery, drawing me in until I just had to know about Weep and all its history. 

While we are taken on a dual perspective journey, Lazlo was definitely the character I related to the most. His entire essence was pure and he was bursting with curiosity, something I admired in him as the novel progressed. I know that many reviewers complained about the instalove plotline, but I couldn't help but fall for it. How could this not be an epic love story when this world was so magical? As I dwelled deeper into this book and world, I got the sense that I was reading a fairytale and that means we needed a romance that was as grand as all fairytales tend to be.

Laini expertly turned the second part of this book into a gentle love story and then threw us all over the edge with that ending. The connections of our characters all started to rear its head and soon we're caught in this web of lovers, family, and betrayal. I love the way our characters all interlaced as it helped make the final few chapters even more intense and emotional.

I don't think this story will ever seize to amaze me and draw me in, which is why I recommend it to anyone that is looking for something rich. Whether you're looking for betrayal, romance, magic, ghosts, or war; this book has all of that and something stronger. It holds a story of an underdog that wishes to prove himself. And there's so much strength in that.

RATING: 5 stars.

TRIGGER WARNINGS: War, bloodshed, rape, kidnapping, gore.


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?

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