Rating: 5 stars
In the wake of tragedy, neither Lazlo nor Sarai are who they were before. One a god, the other a ghost, they struggle to grasp the new boundaries of their selves as dark-minded Minya holds them hostage, intent on vengeance against Weep.
Lazlo faces an unthinkable choice—save the woman he loves, or everyone else?—while Sarai feels more helpless than ever. But is she? Sometimes, only the direst need can teach us our own depths, and Sarai, the muse of nightmares, has not yet discovered what she’s capable of.
As humans and godspawn reel in the aftermath of the citadel’s near fall, a new foe shatters their fragile hopes, and the mysteries of the Mesarthim are resurrected: Where did the gods come from, and why? What was done with thousands of children born in the citadel nursery? And most important of all, as forgotten doors are opened and new worlds revealed: Must heroes always slay monsters, or is it possible to save them instead?
Love and hate, revenge and redemption, destruction and salvation all clash in this gorgeous sequel to the New York Times bestseller, Strange the Dreamer.
UK and US: 2nd October 2018
I was sent this book by Hodder and Stoughton in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much for sending me this and making my dreams come true!
I am absolutely in love with this book! It is by far the best book I have read so far this year and I highly doubt it will be beaten for quite some time! Laini Taylor has created a true masterpiece with this duology and I am already extremely excited for when I shave the time to reread this series! Somehow this book was actually better than Strange the Dreamer which I didn’t think would be possible, but as always Laini Taylor came out and surprised me with another stunning novel.
Everything about this book was absolutely amazing, but let’s start with the characters! As in Strange the Dreamer all of the characters were absolutely amazing, but there isn’t too much I can say without spoiling the first book! Lazlo continued to be an absolute sweetie and just the best character I have ever read in a book! I actually really related to him, his passion for his study was really refreshing to see in a character, and along with his empathy, he was just such an amazing character! I also really appreciated that after the vents of the first novel and all that he learnt he didn’t change one bit. He was still humble and lovely to everyone around him even though his situation was completely changed.
Sarai also continued to be an absolutely fantastic character! She was so feisty and incredibly sensible even when her world was falling apart around her. Also her ability to forgive people was just astounding and actually quite inspiring! There are some characters who do some clearly despicable things throughout this duology but Sarai always manages to look at their motivations and be so understanding and compassionate towards them regardless of what they have done!
Certain characters from Strange the Dreamer had so much character development in this book, but again I really can’t say anything without spoiling everything, so you will just have to take my word on the fact that all of the characters are amazing and realistic and the development across the two books is just fantastic. Also a lot of new characters are introduced in this book who are utterly fascinating and each have so much depth to them. As well as creating amazingly detailed worlds, Laini Taylor creates the most amazingly rich and developed characters. I have never been more invested in characters’ lives than when reading Laini Taylor’s books.
The world created in this book is absolutely extraordinary! We see everything in so much more detail than we did in Strange the Dreamer, specifically the lost city of Weep, and I loved every second of it! The world is so beautiful and I spent the whole book just wishing I could be there to see it for myself, but Laini Taylor writes in such a way that I felt so immersed it was almost as if I was there. There were also some seriously clever crossover moments in this book from her Daughter of Smoke and Bone series! As I loved that series as well it made me so happy to see little bits of it appear in this book! I am keeping all of my fingers crossed that there may be some sort of crossover story happening in the future, it would be so amazing if there was!
The plot in this book was, of course, absolutely fantastic. It was much faster paced than Strange the Dreamer as there was a lot less world-building required before launching into an amazing story! The development of the plot in this book was incredible and so clever! I knew Laini Taylor would create something spectacular with this book but I still hugely underestimated how extraordinary it would be! It was one of the cleverest and most involved plots I have ever read in a book and I will never understand how somebody can come up with something so intricate and amazing from absolutely nothing. Laini Taylor creates some of the best plots I have ever come across and this is definitely no exception! There were so many twists and turns, and aspects to the plot which I never could have imagined would appear from where Strange the Dreamer ended, but everything was so expertly crafted that nothing felt out of place or forced. Everything evolved and grew completely organically and I will always be awed by how captivating the plot was. Even when I wasn’t actively reading the book I was turning the plot over in my head, trying to see what would come next or to process what had just happened. It was an amazing experience and I enjoyed every moment of reading this book.
So overall, in case you couldn’t already tell, I absolutely adored this book. I would so highly recommend this book to everyone, whether you enjoy fantasy or not I still believe there is a good chance you will love this book. Laini Taylor is a fantastically talented author and you will not regret picking up Strange the Dreamer and then moving straight on to Muse of Nightmares!
– Maddie Browse