Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
Can I live in this world?

Title: Strange the Dreamerstrange the dreamer cover
Laini Taylor
Series(?): Strange the Dreamer (#1)
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Publication Date: March 28th 2017
Source & Format: Bought in Waterstones, Hardcover
Page Count: 536 
Genre: Fantasy

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.

Purchase the book!

Strange the Dreamer is one of my favourite reads of 2017 thus far.

I am in love with Lazlo Strange. A weird confession but I’m also in love with the entire world that this book is set in. The Kingdom of Zosma and the City of Weep are fantastical places filled with imagination, knowledge and an intriguing mystery.

Everyone has forgotten the real name of the City of Weep and it has led Lazlo on a quest to discovering where the city lies, while also getting involved in other events along the way. The prose and pacing were excellent and the world building felt subtle and like coats of paint. Taylor let one coat of world-building dry before she added another and it felt natural.

As a lover of myths as well, I loved how much they were incorporated into the story and how they affected the plot overall. There was just so much that I kept cheering and fanboying over in the novel. I couldn’t help but love the story the more I read it.

Speaking of, the ending still has me shocked and I am seriously coming after one of the characters in the sequel because OF WHAT THEY SAID. I was taken aback.

Never Stop Dreaming

I love how dreams were a key element within the story and showed that dreams can not only help us but they can guide us when we’re lost. Dreams are amazingly displayed in Strange the Dreamer and I won’t say any more because I’ll get spoilery but DREAMS ARE COOL. (I dream of taking over the world, can that come true?)

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

The journey of Lazlo was one of maturity and growth as he begins to see the land he’s been reading about and dreaming of. He realises that it’s not like his thoughts, but what I love about Lazlo is that he knows it only adds to the mystery surrounding Weep. Instead of being beaten by realisation, Lazlo takes it on and is even more motivated to solve it’s mysteries and even find the Blue-Skinned Goddess he’s been dreaming about.

Lazlo Strange was such an awesome character and I loved how he looked at things with both a creative and analytical eye because it showed how his character thinks and feels. I also love his intuitiveness and how he always wants to find out the answer to things. He never lets anything just happen and instead finds out why.

Also, this book appealed to my inner bookworm as Lazlo wrote books, read books and would talk all about books. It was a joyful experience reading a bookworm’s thoughts that weren’t my own.

The emotions from this story was like nothing else

I couldn’t even contain my emotions during this story because I became so invested. The characters, world, and story all combined together created such an amazing reading experience for me. I’m sure I’ll definitely be on a bit of a reading slump after this, haha! One day, I hope to write a story that will make people feel what I felt during Strange the Dreamer.

I think it helped that Strange the Dreamer was a combination of a lot of things that I love seeing in stories and that just added to the number of emotions I felt during this story. Zosma is one of my favourite places that I don’t want to see come to ruin. Exploring Weep was such a fun journey too and learning about the backstory behind Weep was phenomenal.

I wouldn’t mind living here

Being in the Great Library of Zosma? YES PLEASE! I’d love to be in that massive library reading books all day. They say that when the library steals a boy, they let it keep him. Well Library, steal away! One of my favourite parts of the world in Strange the Dreamer is perhaps the use of Alchemy. It isn’t really used often in fantasy novels but I loved reading about how Lazlo helped a particular alchemist.

I think this is the moment where I begin to express my extreme joy over the characters because they are everything.  The Godslayer and his crew, the Godspawn, Thyon. THEY WERE ALL SO PERFECT AND I wanted more of them than I already got. Luckily, there is a sequel so hopefully, I’ll be getting more of them. However, I have to say that I HATE ONE CHARACTER SO MUCH. THEY NEED TO BURN.  (I am really angry at this character ok)

My hatred for them is real.

The Godspawn were perhaps the funniest characters in the book and definitely the most romantic. It was interesting to see how they interacted with each other and how much power each of them held. Thyon, I hated at first. He was rude to Lazlo but he grew on me as his motivations and intentions became clear. He’s still meh to me, but I like him more! (Although Lazlo is mine.)

On the occasions that he did look up from the page, he would seem as though he were awakening from a dream.

I can’t wait for this sequel

Strange the Dreamer made me feel all the emotions and feels possible and it’s very deserving of five stars. I can’t put into words how much this book makes me feel and how much I related to Lazlo’s feelings. No matter what people tell you about your dreams, you should never stop dreaming because if you do, you might not get the life you want. The wait for the sequel will kill me. But hopefully, I might be able to snag an ARC if I find out how!

Quick tip: Buy the UK Hardcover because, in my opinion, it looks so much better than the US Hardcover! Although, I’d love UK jacket over US naked cover for the little gold embossed moth that I believe is on the US naked cover.

If you take anything from this; BUY THE BOOK AND LET’S CRY TOGETHER.

About the Author

Laini Taylor is The Sunday Times bestselling author of the internationally acclainmed Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy: Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Days of Blood & Starlight and Dreams of Gods & Monsters, and the companion e-novella, Night of Cake & Puppets. She lives in Portland, Oregon, with her husband, illustraitor Jim Di Bartolo, and their daughter Clementine.

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Have you read Strange the Dreamer? Tell me what you thought about it below!
If not, tell me about your dreams. Do you hope or aspire anything, or have you dreamt something recently you’d like to share?

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Hey friends! I’m Joel, the main writer here at Fictional Fates. I’m a reader and writer who advocates for more diversity in literature.

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