Book Series Review : Strange The Dreamer by Laini Taylor

I am definitely obsessed with the title.

It is alluring, mysterious, dreamy and it definitely piqued my interest! The instant I notice the title (and not the book) and before I even realized what was I doing, I’m holding on the book tight in my grasp and start to read the blurb!

Here goes my journey reading the series.


1. Strange The Dreamer (Strange The Dreamer, #1) by Laini Taylor

Genre : Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance
Page : 544 pages
Published : 28th March 2017

— Blurb —

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.
 

— Mini Review —

“It was impossible, of course. But when did that ever stop any dreamer from dreaming.”

Fun fact. I have never feel myself to be this happy for a lyrical writing re-read. 

I’ve read this book perhaps a year or two before in Indonesian and I immediately fall in love with how this book goes. But then, due to no further information whether Indonesian publishers are going to published the sequel, I’m getting giddy and decided to re-read the book in English and moves on to the sequel immediately!

This is what I’m going to do to convince you. 

This re-read have no doubt, wrapped me around it’s little rustic pages and made me fall in love more with the books.

I’m currently in my youth struggling to maintain a foothold in society and this book is probably on of the best in accompanying my little journey. It speaks of dreams, tales, wonders, spirits and love. Probably one of the most beautiful tales I’ve ever read. 

It’s like reading tales of harsh society which is being molded into a fairy-tales way but with no less impact. This book keeps me on edge, how could one story told such a crude tale in such a beautiful admirable way?

Moreover, blessed the plot. It’s so unique, so enchanting and definitely not something you could easily forget. 

“I think you’re a fairy tale. I think you’re magical, and brave, and exquisite. And I hope you’ll let me be in your story.”


2. Muse of Nightmare(Strange The Dreamer, #2) by Laini Taylor

Genre : Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance
Page : 522 pages
Published : 2nd October 2018

— Blurb —

Sarai has lived and breathed nightmares since she was six years old.

She believed she knew every horror and was beyond surprise.

She was wrong.


In the wake of tragedy, neither Lazlo nor Sarai are who they were before. One a god, the other a ghost, they struggle to grasp the new boundaries of their selves as dark-minded Minya holds them hostage, intent on vengeance against Weep.

Lazlo faces an unthinkable choice—save the woman he loves, or everyone else?—while Sarai feels more helpless than ever. But is she? Sometimes, only the direst need can teach us our own depths, and Sarai, the Muse of Nightmares, has not yet discovered what she’s capable of.

As humans and godspawn reel in the aftermath of the citadel’s near fall, a new foe shatters their fragile hopes, and the mysteries of the Mesarthim are resurrected: Where did the gods come from, and why? What was done with thousands of children born in the citadel nursery? And most important of all, as forgotten doors are opened and new worlds revealed: Must heroes always slay monsters, or is it possible to save them instead?

— Mini Review —

“Once upon a time there was a silence that dreamed of becoming a song, and then I found you, and now everything is music.”

I don’t even know where to start aside from bombarding y’all with my excitement to start this sequel. It’s all so new and yet my skin tingles with familiarity for the story. New characters are introduced, plot are getting thickens and oh my god. The love I feel for the characters.

I thought of how great the first book messages to the readers are and I thought it all end there while the story moves on forward. How wrong was I.

This books is surely thick with conflict but also, the messages it delivers to readers, foretold by the characters we end up loving more and more in the end. And the story. How it all being crafted in such a way and wrapped up in such a beautiful story of redemption, hatred, forgiveness, hope and love.

“It’s the mind. It’s the most complex and astonishing thing there is, that there’s a world inside each of us that no one else can ever know or see or visit.”


Things That’ll Worth Your Time 

1. Lazlo

Honestly speaking, I can’t remember when is the last time I ended up loving all the characters in a book. Be it good or bad. And I mean, every characters (well probably not the dark villain, but you get what I’m trying to say) I love all the characters in Strange The Dreamer series. Each one of them is surviving and try to outwit the broken part they hide. 

And most especially, how much I love Lazlo. He is such a wonderful character full of dreams, hope and love. Everything about Lazlo is a delight. Perhaps, Lazlo is my most favourite male protagonist of all. Unlike any others who possessed a deep fiery fire within, Lazlo learn to adapt with the situation he was in and I could definitely said Lazlo might even be the kindest male protagonist I’ve ever read.

2. The Lost City of Weep

Weep feels like my own lost city now. I love how easy, how good and smooth the way the author build and push in Weep inside my mind. It’s unconsciously done that without you know it, you’ll feel such a longing for Weep yourself and can’t help but to think about Weep for the rest of your day.

3. The Lyrical Story

I am not a big fan of lyrical narratives but I am so in love with how this story is being carried out. It was all so enchanting, instantly grab my attention and made me lost in awe for the book. Even the ugly parts are told in such a beautiful and softest way without cutting the impact it left for readers.  

4. The Magical Realm

The world-building is superb. It was all so enchantingly terrifying and magical at the same time. Never have I read anything like this before. It definitely blows my mind away!

5. The Messages

I think one of the things that made this series valuable is the voice and messages they sound and deliver to readers. And I personally think Strange The Dreamer series has the most variety and valuable messages for a fantasy series. 

– The Two Sides of A Person

I love how this series always managed to show the good in people. Even despicable characters have their own moment of truth and how this book managed to wrench our heart in guilt and made us think twice before branding someone as bad. 

– The Skin Colour

This book holds the most sublte and yet strong messages about skin and race differences in Strange The Dreamer way. Whereas one possessed the colour of brown and the other, blue. 

– The Unbalanced Society Ladder

I could not agree more on how this series write out the unbalanced society ladder. How the powerful managed to gain more power and consciously step down on those lower in status while the said “lower status” are set to finished all the crude works.


The More Reason Why You Should Read This Book

One of the many things I love about this book is how relatable this book is. All the said quotes and life wisdom is just gold and made me instantly fall in love with the book more and more.

A tiny wee bit sneak peak:

“You think good people can’t hate? You think good people don’t kill? Good people do all the things bad people do, Lazlo. It’s just that when they do them, they call it justice.”

“And that’s how you go on. You lay laughter over the dark parts. The more dark parts, the more you have to laugh. With defiance, with abandon, with hysteria, any way you can.”

“We’re all on the same side. Even her. You can be on the same side and have different ideas.”

“I would have chosen you, if they had let me choose.”

So? What do you say? Enough to convince you to read the book?


Strange The Dreamer

VS

The Muse of Nightmare

Both books are amazing and magical in their own way. The lyrical story always managed to moved me and wrecked me at the same time, the world building is just amazing and so unique.

I think what made these two books different is their story and the characters. But still, both evolve in a good way.

In Strange The Dreamer, it’s more about introducing the wonder and the mystery in a balanced way between Lazlo, the world building and the main issue. In Muse of Nightmare however, it’s more complex and it focused more on the drama rather than the world building and Lazlo himself. But it moves forward and the story developed in such a good way.

What I love the most in Muse of Nightmare, is the characters development. These series has such a way in story telling that reading characters growth feels like knowing and watching a friend wise up. It’s that good. But for me, I think I prefer Strange The Dreamer more because the story feels original to me, that told the story of a lost city and perhaps, because it’s the book that I come to love Lazlo as the way he is.

But again, both books are highly recommended because both books have beautiful lyrical story, magical realm, lovely characters and of course, their own messages to highlight the course of the book.


If you feel lost and need some distraction, I think this series might be suitable for you. It’s a book about a dreamer and I believe, Lazlo might remind you a bit of yourself in terms of chasing a good dream. There’s a lot to learn about the series and I guarantee you, reading these series will warmth your heart away.

Author: Celine

 

 

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