Strange the Dreamer is the story of:
the aftermath of a war between gods and men
a mysterious city stripped of its name
a mythic hero with blood on his hands
a young librarian with a singular dream
a girl every bit as perilous as she is imperiled
alchemy and blood candy, nightmares and godspawn, moths and monsters, friendship and treachery, love and carnage.
Welcome to Weep. (Goodreads)
I've been looking forward to Strange the Dreamer since I finished Dreams of Gods and Monsters (the last of Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy). I didn't even know if she'd ever write another book, but I knew if she did I'd be first in line to read it.
We've had a long wait for Strange the Dreamer since it's release was pushed back...but IT'S HERE. FINALLY. AND OH MY IS IT WORTH THE WAIT.
It's impossible not to fall in love with Lazlo Strange. He's possibly the cutest character I've ever read. But as a fantasy reader, I felt so connected to Lazlo. He's every reader that's spent their childhood with their nose in a book, dreaming of adventures in far off lands.
The cast of characters are so complex and layered; my feelings are so complicated over them. The guilt some of them carry is heartbreaking. We didn't get enough of some of the characters in this book, leaving me aching to find out more in the next book.
Taylor's writing is exquisite, as usual. It's beautifully crafted and lush to read. Add that to a masterful plot and you've got the makings of an absolute classic. I loved reading about the world, its so well constructed and well thought out (and has a link to the DOSAB books). Strange the Dreamer needs is own category of fantasy, like her first series, it carves out its own unique spot. You'll never read anything like this.
The romance is adorable, sweet and so very very real. There's no insta-love. (Spoiler: I loved the small fact that Sarai didn't think Lazlo was good looking when she first saw him. But as she got to know him she saw the beauty in him and fell in love with that.)
I have seen people say that they thought it was hard to get into Strange the Dreamer, but I didn't have any problems. I was immediately drawn in and though the plot progressed really fast. However, I enjoy lonnnggg descriptive and drawn out books, so this probably impacts my opinion.
I NEED more. The wait for book 2 is going to be excruciating.
5 Stars. Undeniably. To me, its perfect.
I'll be doing an interview with Laini when she visits the UK in April. Let me know if you have any questions you think I should ask!