Strange the Dreamer (All Hail Queen Laini) | Book Review


By: Laini Taylor

Strange the Dreamer #1 | 544 Pages | Pub. 2017

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Strange the Dreamer at a Glance

  • Overall Rating: ★★★★★
  • Heroine: She’s your BEST nightmare
  • Hero: New Book Boyfriend
  • Emotional: Izzy crying on the bathroom floor after Denny dies
  • Brutality: Baby murders

Pairs Well With:


  • 1.5 oz gin
  • ½ oz cherry brandy
  • ½ madeira
  • 1 tsp orange juice

Our Thoughts

CW: rape, murder

We loved Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone series so we knew that we would like this book. What we didn’t know is what we were missing out on this past year since Strange the Dreamer came out. It’s gorgeous. The worldbuilding is intricate and flawless; the characters have heart and soul and dreams; and the language truly brings everything to life. This world is brutal but full of love and potential for goodness.

The only legitimate complaint we have about this book is that it is a long one. We wish we could have read it over a week or two, but sometimes we are not great at planning so we did it in three days. If you aren’t into long books then maybe walk away from this one, but realize you are missing out on literary gold. We also aren’t okay that we have to wait until freaking October for Muse of Nightmares but let’s blame the publisher not our queen Laini.

Beware, Spoilers are coming…

What We Liked

  • Lazlo – Got ourselves a new book boyfriend. Lazlo is big and burly, but soft on the inside with the heart of Belle. He broke his nose on a fairytale book you guys. This man is #readinggoals for life. And his need to save Sarai, omg. Our hearts just can’t take all of the love and feelings. We truly enjoyed his character progression from a boy who is walked all over to a man who stands up for what he wants. Plus…Pink Striped Socks make him happy. #dead

“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.”

  • Sarai –  All Sarai wants is to be loved. Can’t we make this happen people? She is smart and caring and actually concerns herself with people other than her. Even after ruining people’s’ lives through nightmares for years, she feels guilt and it haunts her. We just want poor Sarai to get a good night’s sleep and be a normal girl.
  • The Ending – This is what we wanted. Maybe not fully, but the ending reaching into our chests and ripped our hearts out. Jess legit was clutching her book and walking around with it like things would change. But that is the result of the brilliance that Taylor puts into her novels.

What We Didn’t Like

  • The Gods – From stealing and raping children to ignoring their own, these gods needed to be killed. Dropping an angel on a city and setting up shop to rape and impregnate that many people get’s a big Hell No from us.
  • Minya – Yes, she saved them and is a minor hero, but this girl went into The Ring creepy/crazy level. Her army of ghosts gave us nightmares, not Sarai. Minya is a little Maeve wanna be and we are not having it.
  • Baby Killing – We fully understand that people get scared and destroy what they don’t know, but babies slaughtered in the nursery is almost too dark for even us.

“Good people do all the things bad people do, Lazlo. It’s just that when they do them, they call it justice.”

We are counting down the days until Muse of Nightmares and for all you lucky humans that have obtained Muse of Nightmares ARCs please consider yourself #blessed because we are so jealous.


Let us know what you thought of Strange the Dreamer in the comments!

Drink Up - Teagan & Jess

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29 thoughts on “Strange the Dreamer (All Hail Queen Laini) | Book Review

  1. As someone above said lol “Izzy crying on the bathroom floor after Denny dies” wow okay now I know I have to emotionally prepare before I read this book lol because omg that episode packed a punch haha

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love your review. And yes, Lazlo is a book boyfiend material, and OMG Minya is the worst, the whole blue Gods are the worst!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Literary gold is the perfect way to describe this novel–I can’t wait to reread it before Muse of Nightmares comes out. And Minya was so creepy and kind of evilish which part of me actually liked but mostly freaked me out. And I love Lazlo so much he’s so precious ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Minya is the perfect villain – creepy, but likable in the way that you’re like if I was a villain I’d be you.

      Lazlo is too good for this world. We don’t deserve him but I refuse to give him back!

      Liked by 1 person

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