Wait, this can’t really be the end, can it? I’d like to personally thank the narrator for both Strange the Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares, Steve West, for providing such a great listening experience. 😉 I can’t imagine what Laini Taylor will pull from her brain next, but you bet I’m excited about it.
This review may contain spoilers for book 1, Strange the Dreamer. Read at your own risk.
Title: Muse of Nightmares (Strange the Dreamer #2)
Author: Laini Taylor
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Release date: October 2, 2018
Genre: Young adult, fantasy
Length: 522 pages (U.S. hardcover)
Synopsis: (via Goodreads) “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?”
This book is one wild ride! It’s sensual, exhilarating, and totally made me gasp and go, “Omg!” I adore how Taylor can weave multiple storylines together and then merge them into a cohesive, “How didn’t I see that coming?” plot. That’s exactly how I felt reading this book, too. Each storyline is heartbreaking, and I didn’t know I could feel so much for these characters, but I do! I also loved the Easter eggs Taylor included as well, which also had me going, “Omg!” and with the hope that she may extend the universe a bit more because I feel like there’s so much more story to tell. I’ll be a bit honest though, some parts did drag, and I had a hard time caring, but it wasn’t enough to make me give the book a lesser rating.
I gotta admit, it was a real struggle to like some of these characters (especially Thyon and Minya), especially since they annoyed and angered me throughout a great deal of the story. I absolutely adored Lazlo and Sarai. I loved the blossoming of their relationship in book 1, and then to have it progress in such a sensual way… I got shivers! I loved Ruby and Sparrow, Feral, and how they made me laugh. My heart break when I read about Kora and Nova… Gees, Taylor doesn’t relent! Her stories and characters pack a punch and twists your heart! I will say that I didn’t care too much about the chapters with Thyon… I mean, he’s not my favorite character. I like that he learns about his privilege and strives to do better but it was all just “meh” to me.
How can you not love the way Taylor writes? Her world-building is on point, and I’ve loved it since I read Daughter of Smoke and Bone. Taylor’s one of those writers that makes me go, “How do you come up with this stuff?” Her writing pulls you in, takes hold, and doesn’t let go. (But why would you want to leave?)
Check out these other reviews:
- Chaima gave this book 5 glowing stars.
- Abigail from Abigail’s Tales rated this book the same as I did.
- Jessy was disappointed with the book.