Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1)by Laini Taylor, Лэйни Тейлор Published 28 Mar 2017
|Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1).pdf|
|Publisher||Little, Brown Books for Young Readers|
Download Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1) (2014) PDF ePub eBook
- 1. Register a free 1 month Trial Account.
- 2. Download as many books as you like.
- 3. Cancel the membership at any time if not satisfied.
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.
"Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1)" Reviews
Have you ever loved a book so much that it completely fills your soul, warms your heart, and heals your broken pieces?
Because that's Strange the Dreamer.
“On the second Sabbat of Twelfthmoon, in the city of Weep, a girl fell from the sky. Her skin was blue, her blood was red.”
This is that rare type of book that, while reading, is a constant reminder of why you fell in love with reading in the first place. This book is perfection. This book is a tangible piece of joy. The feeling while reading this is indescribable, but the closest word choice would have to be pure bliss.
This isn't the type of book to come around often. In fact, the last time I felt this was back in 2015 with The Name of the Wind, and the same feeling of guilt from giving other books five star ratings is here again. This book is so much greater than five stars. Yet, this book feels unratable, because how do you rate perfection instead of just feeling at a loss of words because of its awe?
I don't see how anything I'll read in 2017 can beat this. Not A Court of Wings and Ruin, not Tyrant's Throne, not Skullsworn, not All the Crooked Saints, not The Chosen, not anything. Just throw my 2017 anticipation list away, because Strange the Dreamer was all I needed this year.
“Two hundred years ago, there was a storm.”
I truly believe the best way to go into this book is blind, I wouldn't even read the synopsis, but the basic premise of this story is that we are introduced to an orphan, who has always been ostracized for being different, and he is constantly dreaming of the Unseen City that everyone else has long forgotten. He grows up, and moves locations, but the mystery city is always on his mind. Then, he finally gets confirmation that the Unseen City is very real and very much in need of help.
Surprise mystery after surprise mystery, eloquent word construction after more eloquent word construction, plot twist after plot twist, and you will become so immersed in this world that you will feel like you yourself have lived in the Unseen City all your life.
I will say that this book does have a really strong romance. In fact, it probably has one of the biggest OTPS I've ever read. Like, I'm real invested. Probably too invested. There is also *gasp* sex in this book, and is dealt with in such a realistic and natural way, while also being very believable, because these characters are seventeen-years-old and are discovering their bodies for the first time. But don't go into this expecting A Court of Mist and Fury's sex scenes, but go into this knowing that it is an older YA book with mature themes that are amazingly written. Again, I'm too emotionally invested in these fictional characters.
“She asked in a hesitant whisper, “Do you still think I’m a… a singularly unhorrible demon?” “No,” he said, smiling. “I think you’re a fairy tale. I think you’re magical, and brave, and exquisite. And…” His voice grew bashful. Only in a dream could he be so bold and speak such words. “I hope you’ll let me be in your story.”
➽ The Plot - This story is so unique, like, take my breath away, how did a human even come up with this, unique. The themes brought up are so important, and the messages will stick with you. The plot is engaging, addicting, and nothing short of phenomenal.
➽ The Writing - I kind of want to just write "Laini Taylor is Queen" and leave it at that. The only other person I can compare her writing style to is Maggie Stiefvater. Lyrical writing speaks to my very soul, but Laini Taylor's craft is so perfected that she weaves these heart stopping, unbelievable lines that are so poetic that just leaves me with my mouth open, my breath gone, and my heart pounding. This writing will make you feel as if you are dreaming, and you'll never confuse it with a nightmare. Laini Taylor's writing is a tier above anything I've ever read. Anything.
➽ The World - Again, like the plot, the world is so unique and so well crafted. The settings are enough to fill even the most empty of hearts. We have libraries, books upon books, story after story, a mysterious city with an even more mysterious water source running underneath it, mythical armies, demons and angels, domination and salvation. And we have magic, and the magic system in this world is a little random, but learning about all the different possibilities was fascinating. Again, something I became addicted over.
➽ The Characters - *breaks down in tears* I can't. The two main protagonists of this story, Lazlo and Sarai, are everything you could ever want and then more. They are empathetic, helpful, resistant, persistent, hopeful, even in the most bleak of situations, and capable of unconditional love. This story is also filled with gods and goddesses, a lot of ghosts, and maybe a few monsters. Oh, and moths. How I love the moths.
➽ The Messages - You can take a lot from Strange the Dreamer, but two messages are very predominant throughout this book. The first message is about race and how we treat and blame others dependent on their skin color based on bad things that other people with that skin color have done. Welcome to America, what ban attempt are we up to now? The next message, and the biggest constant theme of this novel, is that we are not our parent's/ancestor's mistakes. Everyone can change and everyone can be/do better. It is never too late to do good.
“Sarai was seventeen years old, a goddess and a girl. Half her blood was human, but it counted for nothing. She was blue. She was godspawn. She was anathema. She was young. She was lovely. She was afraid.”
This book is beyond words with its perfection. I loved every aspect of it, and the only legitimate negative thing I have to say is that Strange the Dreamer makes a very unfortunate abbreviation. And as much as that makes me giggle while taking notes, that's honestly it.
Thank you, Laini Taylor, for a book I will carry in my heart for the rest of my life. This is the best thing I've read in years, and I will never forget this story, these characters, or its message. This book is a love letter to story lovers everywhere, and I recommend this book to everyone with every fiber of my being. Also, I'm buying this for everyone for Christmas, so if you're my friends or family reading this, pretend to be surprised.
No other title in 2018 will come close to the anticipation I feel for The Muse of Nightmares. Please, Lord, help me and my very fragile heart with the wait.
Blog | Twitter | Tumblr | Instagram | Youtube | Twitch
[Update: July 26th, 2017]
You can never have too many copies of your favorite book! 📖🦋✨
[Reread: March, 2018]
This is still such a masterpiece! I reread this during my Spring break in California and it was nothing short of perfection all over again.
It was impossible, of course.
But when did that ever stop any dreamer from dreaming?
Oh hell, it was gorgeous perfection.
I've been away for a while because I'm on vacation, but I just had to step back in and review this completely strange, utterly beautiful book. I've been waiting so long for Laini Taylor to steal my heart once more, and Strange the Dreamer does not disappoint.
It's so tempting when reviewing Taylor's books to talk about the writing style and language. Because it's stunning. I don’t know where the line between purple and beautiful prose should be drawn, but I do know that Laini Taylor stands just on the right side of it. The very sentences themselves feel magical and dreamy, creating an atmosphere that convinces you you've been transported to another world.
There's a timeless fairy tale quality to her writing, too; it’s *almost* too much, *almost* too poetic, and yet somehow it is just perfect. I also particularly loved the running theme of dreamers and dreaming here:
It was why she dared no longer dream: because in her own sleep she was like any dreamer, at the mercy of her unconscious. When she fell asleep, she was no sorceress or dark enthralled, but just a sleeping girl with no control over the terrors within her.
Okay, where was I? See what I mean? You can get all caught up in the writing and lose your trail of thought. But my point was that while it's tempting to go on and on about Taylor's writing, it does a disservice to the fantastic storytelling underneath. Because, personally, you can wax poetic until you're blue in the face, but if I'm not interested in the characters and underlying story/conflicts, I'll be left feeling cold.
No need to worry about that here.
Strange the Dreamer opens with the orphaned Lazlo. Though a big dreamer, he is a junior librarian and, let's face it, probably never going to turn his dreams into anything more than just that. Ah, but no! Because this orphan is about to have his life turned upside down when his biggest, wildest dream comes closer than ever before.
You see, when Lazlo was young, the name of the lost, mythical city was stolen from everyone's minds. He knows he once knew the Unseen City's real name, but the word left in its place is Weep. No matter how he struggles to remember, all he hears is the same old "Weep". Obsessed with discovering what happened, he spends his adolescence researching the city, trying desperately to find anything about it, longing to one day visit the city himself.
And, of course, like all bold dreamers of fantasy, he will get a chance to go on a magical journey and maybe, just maybe, make his dreams come true. I won't give away any more than that. This is a fairly long book and many things happen, but it's best to discover them for yourself and on the author's terms.
Strange the Dreamer is so unique in its rich world-building, its wonderfully-conceived story of gods, goddesses, ghosts, magic, romance, secrets and guilt, but there is an old tale lurking beneath - that of the orphaned underdog who wanted to be so much more. And whether it is an unloved boy with a scar, stuck in a closet beneath the stairs, who gets to be a powerful wizard, or a nerdy photographer who gets bitten by a spider and learns to be a hero, this is a story that never ceases to appeal to me.
How nice it is to be reminded that magic and dreams can come true. With some darkness, nightmares and bloodshed along the way, of course.
Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube
Audio re-read was freaking awesome!
Had to get the UK Version & my bookmark from my favorite place on Etsy. Yay!
This book is amazing! That's just all there is to it. ❤ Laini Taylor is amaze balls!
When I got this beautiful book from UPS I about fell over. It is so freaking beautiful. The cover is so shiny and no amount of pictures can do it justice. You just have to see it for yourself.
This book is so full of everything. How do I even review a book that is all over and made me sad and took me to a strange and mystical world.
Lazlo Strange, whom I love, was an orphan boy who went on an errand to The Great Library and never returned. He loved books and was lost in them until he was found and they just kept him on instead of sending him back to the home. He became a librarian. But he was obsessed with the story of Weep and what happened there. He spent years writing his own journals about the place.
Lazlo was know as "Strange The Dreamer" or Lazlo Strange. But he wasn't strange at all and the things he found out helped him later on. Sometimes dreams can come true.
I'm going to Weep, he thought, and could have laughed at the pun, but he kept his composure, and when the Tizerkane warriors rode out of the Great Library and out of Zosma, Strange the dreamer went with them.
I'm not going to give out any kind of spoilers because this is a book you need to discover on your own. It's freaking amaze balls! Did I already say that?
I will say there are a good bit of characters in the book, nothing confusing, but my favorites are Lazlo and Sarai. ❤
Laini Taylor can write some beautiful words.
Weep slept. Dreamers dreamed. A grand moon drifted, and the wings of the citadel cut the sky in two: light above, dark below.
Sarai is something else but I'm not going to tell you what she is and there are others like her. There is a really sad story behind all of that as well. But Sarai is wonderful and kind and different.
Streaming forth into the night, the darkness fractured into a hundred fluttering bits like windblown scraps of velvet. A hundred smithereens of darkness, they broke apart and re-formed and siphoned themselves into a little typhoon that swept down toward the rooftops of Weep, whirling and wheeling on soft twilight wings.
Sarai screamed moths. Moths and her own mind, pulled into a hundred pieces and flung out into the world.
Seriously, if you have wanted to get this book, get it and I hope you love it. I didn't understand every little bit about the book but that's okay because I still loved it. ❤
Of course that ending . . . and there is so much more going on in the book but like I said, you need to read it and feel the magic. I don't even know where Laini Taylor comes up with this stuff. Just the way she writes is surreal.
Now we have to a wait a billion years to get the next one. *Sob*
MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List
*Reread Apr 2017
This time I actually finished it, I listened to the audiobook, and it was better but still lots of unnecessary filler that prevented me from really getting into the story. Really sad I didn't enjoy it more but oh well, I gave it a fair shot!
*DNF Jan 2017
I never, like literally never, DNF books but this is one that I just couldn't do. I was so incredibly confused the whole time I read it. It was so all over the place I couldn't even bring myself to read any further. DNFed @ pg 150. Rating is obviously based on what I read.
*Thank you to Indigo for sending me this ARC! All opinions are my own*
4.5 stars!! Wow this book truly blew me away!!!
I avoided reading Strange The Dreamer for a looooongggg time. I have a record of epic high fantasy with lyrical prose not sitting well with me and combined with my inability to grasp the synopsis before reading, I was greatly intimidated by this book. How glad I am that I finally gave it a chance and took my time with it because I can't imagine having not experienced this story!
boy do I feel like someone resurrected me from the dead badly
I wonder if anyone with bulky muscular arms is willing to hug me right now, I want to be compressed back to death because I’ve decided to abandon humanity to become an orb of energy and light instead and just live photogenically until The Muse of Nightmares is out.
“Beautiful and full of monsters?”
“All the best stories are.”
How much money do you think I should invest in the search for immortality for Laini Taylor to keep her as a story teller forever?
Because gosh, I love her writing and the way she tells her stories so much that my heart actually threatens to break out of my collarbone.
I swear it’s like you’re reading and you can just see yourself sipping champagne on a balcony overlooking Paris at sunset in a silk robe with roses all around and a fountain in the background. Her writing is the equivalent of honey dripping off a spoon over a toasted bagel and I don't know how else to describe it but there’s just something incredibly soothing about it. Like a memory foam mattress with underfloor heating and you just want to sink in. It's the feeling of wanting to float around as collections of rose petals like the nymphs in narnia. It's your eyelashes stuck together from crying, and lana songs playing and you just want to claw your way out of your body into a warm slipstream and just let the current wash you away.
And you really have no idea how I wish I could tattoo that feeling and carry it around with me forever.
So. What is Strange the Dreamer about?
It’s a story of a city that lost its name and was lost to the world, of blue-skinned goddesses who appear in the dreams of men and moths who infiltrate their unconsciousness.
Of ghosts bound to a child’s will and orphans who inherited tales of hate, of dragonfly wings purchased in dreams and noses literally broken by fairy tales, of heroes with untold stories or rather stories stolen by imposter heroes.
Of dreamsmiths who “turn their nightmares into fireflies and catch them in a jar”, of godslayers and great men who are also good men (and the repercussions of being both)
And of beginning that are very literally endings and of a character who “couldn’t have belonged at the library more truly if he were a book himself”.
It's a story I wish I could purchase another heart entirely just to love it with.
I love how you can see a little fragment of yourself in Laini Taylor's characters' eyes. Especially when these characters have been fragmented in so many pieces so many times in so many different ways and you can recognize parts of yourself in their anger and guilt and bitterness and loneliness and desire to be more than this (where this translates to everything). In the way they’re constantly trying to stitch themselves back together and wondering if it will ever be the same Original image, if the pieces will ever fit again.
And if there’s anything I like more than flawed characters and characters you can relate to, it’s flawed characters that you can relate to.
✨ Lazlo Strange
I can't remember if I had a personality before loving Lazlo Strange but at this point it's quite irrelevant.
Lazlo Strange makes me want to reinvent myself as the concept of kindness and stop glorifying bitterness and saltiness and start promoting the idea of being nice to people “simply because they needed it” (and not necessarily because theydeserve it)
He is the kind of person that is so deeply kind and compassionate that you would listen to them speak and it’s like you're watering your heart and soul garden. And I just can't believe the world isn't catered to making him feel good and content, because let me tell you: being kind and gentle and vulnerable when you have been exposed to less than zero modeling of that behavior is not easy and Lazlo Strange does it every day and honestly?? He can use my body as a canoe and row himself across the toxic waste, he deserves only the softest cashmere.
Let’s not also forget that he's a reader but most importantly he’s a book lover. And I'm sure in an alternate universe, he would pick me up at 3am and have night adventures with me in a desolate library or he and I could be sharing harry potter celebration boxes harmoniously and that would have been perfect.
“He read while he walked. He read while he ate. The other librarians suspected he somehow read while he slept, or perhaps didn’t sleep at all.”
He's also an introvert. The kind of introvert who's constantly trying to astral project into a library with soft candle lightning and the warm sound of silence. Who gets what it's like to be a lizard person in human skin trying too hard to fit into society but not understanding the appropriate level of eye contact nor how to talk about his passions (books) in a moderate amount.
So hey @universe, when is a certain lazlo strange going to manifest in my life?? [tapping my watch passive aggressively]
“It was no small thing to shed a lifetime of nonbeing and suddenly be seen.”
Sarai is the blue-skinned goddess who infiltrates dreams and turns them into nightmares. Except she’s also just a child who’s inherited a story of hate and revenge, like being rendered a solid object with a parental control lock on it.
Which just goes to show you that is so fucked up how much value is placed on family in the sense of blood, when you have at least six genetic twins somewhere around the world but nobody tries to make you feel bad because you don’t love them just because you’re made of the same stuff (or in sarai’s case, because you wouldn’t carry on their petty revenge agenda).
And you know what? I just want to build a spotless and aesthetically pleasing floating citadel with her and go live in it and be sexy goddesses together and do nothing but insert god's fear in the hearts of all men.
✨Sarai x Lazlo
I think my biggest shift in perspective has been going from being aggressively anti-instalove to not giving a fragmented fuck that technically this was insta-love. I just really love these two dorks so much together and I love that they're willing to be unattractive in front of each other. I'm trash for this warm kind of intimacy, tbh.
✨ Thyon Nero
I have a lot of inner conflict regarding thyon because on one hand, I hate him with a casanovian passion, and on the other, I just want to stroke his hair gently because honestly sometimes you just lose track of where “trying to protect yourself” ends and “selfishness” begins. Sometimes you succumb to jealousy and self-pity and bitterness and you lose track of yourself. Sometimes your defense mechanism kicks in and you hurt before you get hurt.
I feel bad for Thyon but seriously. If he hurts my child (Lazlo), the deal’s off the table.
How cool is it to get to hang out with ghosts?? (says me who in case she’s ever had a paranormal experience, she’ll probably immediately have a heart attack and die)
Except in this scenario, Minya gets said ghost to hang out with her. And by hanging out, I don’t mean teaming up to scare the rude old lady that lives across the street. I mean it in the sense that she catches them like one would catch butterflies in a net and keeps them to do her binding and cede to her every whim.
Which is seven shades of gruesome but I refuse to believe for one second that Minya is just that. Not when I feel like my heart has just been torn into a million pieces and scattered across the desert to be picked at by vultures whenever I think about her and “they were all i could carry, they were all i could carry”.
I really just hope everyone sees through her thick armor of bullshit and glimpse the confused and hurt and lonely child inside who’s only ever wanted to protect her family.
Oh and on a side note, that ending was just pure cruelty, Laini Taylor. Pure fucking cruelty.
Overall: this was awesome and I'd totally recommend it because everyone needs to read this extraordianary fucking book