02 April, 2019

[Review] Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

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Cover image from the goodreads website.

Series: Strange the Dreamer Duology (#1)
Release Date: 28 March, 2017
Publisher: Little, Brown Young Readers
Genre: Young Adult Fiction/Epic Fantasy/Friendship/Romance/Mystery
ISBN: 9781478913054
Edition: Audiobook (also available in Kindle, Hardback, and Paperback)
Rating: ★★★★
Review Written: 18 March, 2019
Summary: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?

See more by Laini Taylor at her Website.
I had heard about Laini Taylor before, and I had taken a crack at the first book in the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series before giving up at the time. It was a good book from what little I read, I just didn't have time to get through the book in a timely manner. Honestly, now it takes me months to read through anything in physical form, and sometimes in audio too. So, it wasn't really a surprise that it took me a while to get around to listening (and then finishing) Strange the Dreamer, but I am definitely glad I finished.

Strange the Dreamer introduces us to the Land of Zosma and in particular to a Junior Librarian (an awesome profession) Lazlo Strange, a war orphan who by some good fortune escaped a life of being a monk to join a great library. Still, it's hard to be content in life when your position is looked down upon, and you're more than a little obsessed with a city that is considered dead and lost to the rest of the world. With a bit of luck, and a twist of that he ends up on an adventure to the city called Weep and the potential to learn so much more about the world than he knew.

With each turn of the book, Ms. Taylor leads us into the mysteries of the world of Zosma, the complicated relationship Lazlo has with Thyon Nero, and what exactly is the problem in Weep? The complex and rich world of Lazlo is a beautiful place, and his dreams tend to be rich with a fair amount of Lucidity in them. With each step further into Weep's history, Lazlo struggles to reconcile what he's learning to be true and what he's always dreamed about.

In the aftermath of a disaster, Lazlo learns more about himself than he ever thought he could. His ability to manipulate a metal that no one else can leaves him both revered and reviled in the eyes of the citizens of Weep.

Readers who like a slow, but not dragging plot line will definitely enjoy Strange the Dreamer. The world building, as previously mentioned, is fantastic, and the book spares no expense at fleshing it out as it goes. Now, I'm off to listen to the second book in the duology, Muse of Nightmares.

10 comments:

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