Book Reviews

Review: Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

So I finally decided to read Strange the Dreamer. And now I’m not sure why I waited so long? Do you ever finish a book you’ve had on your shelf for a while and thought, “why??” Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts.


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.


Something that I’ve come to associate with Laini Taylor is whimsical and lyrical writing. Strange the Dreamer is no exception. It’s like being tangled in a beautiful dream. From the beginning, I was wrapped in the mystery – this city of Weep – and I instantly loved Lazlo. We love a bookworm character and Lazlo’s passion for knowledge and stories is infectious. Not to mention, who likes when someone steals dreams and possibilities. I fell in love with both Lazlo and Sarai almost immediately.

What I loved about Sarai is that through her perspective, Taylor asks questions about inherited revenge. About being born into a system of vengeance and hatred where those who are raised now, don’t understand that scope. They’ve inherited this sense of injustice, but what does it truly mean for them? In some ways, they’re remnants of a time ago, a story people think were vanquished in the night. Pieces of a truth they don’t want to know.

Strange the Dreamer was like falling into a daydream with tinges of a nightmare. That line of not knowing if it’s a beautiful nightmare or a terrifying daydream. For me, falling in love with a book begins with the characters. And I only grew to love Lazlo and Sarai – characters striving against the current, striking off into uncharted territory. The story unfolds before you and you witness character’s lives evolving, breaking down, and building.

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If you have also been waiting to read Strange the Dreamer, take this review as your sign to read it. There’s certainly writing which is flowery and perhaps you need to be in the right headspace, but this story will charm you until the end. Find Strange the Dreamer on Goodreads, Amazon, Indiebound, & The Book Depository.


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