Review: Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor (Strange the Dreamer #2)


Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor // VBC ReviewMuse of Nightmares (Strange the Dreamer #2)
Laini Taylor
Published: Oct. 2, 2018 (Little Brown Books for Young Readers)
Purchase: Book Depository or Amazon
Review source: copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review

Reviewed by: Beth

Rating (out of 5): 4.5 stars

Lazlo Strange is no longer himself. Or rather he is, but he’s also so much more. And Sarai, well…she has changed as well. While Strange the Dreamer told so much of his story, Muse of Nightmares is where Sarai takes her story back. While Sarai struggles with her new reality, she and Lazlo both try to keep Minya from fulfilling her revenge—until unexpected visitors show up, forcing them to a reckoning of a past they never knew.

Strange the Dreamer was my first ever Laini Taylor book. I was blown away by the lyrical writing, and words that seemed to burn their way into my soul. Somewhat ironic knowing that Taylor has said that this duology was extremely difficult for her to write. When I read Muse, however—I stalled. First, I wanted to really enjoy the story more (I practically INHALED Strange when I read it.), but I also didn’t want it to end. Though I will say—without spoilers!—that the end of Muse has a pleasant surprise for those familiar with Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy. A pleasant surprise that, if we’re lucky, will mean even MORE pleasant surprises to come. 😉

Muse of Nightmares is set in the same world as Strange, and as before, the writing is so descriptive and lyrical. Descriptions that could sound boring and dull come alive on the page, whether she’s talking about a library, a dinner, or the inside of a ship. Her characters are the same, in that each of them have their own personalities and each of them stands as unique and special. Strange and Sarai, obviously, are the stars of their show, but the other characters do not suffer by comparison. Thyon Nero, with his superiority and arrogance, finally seeing the real world. Minya, frozen as a child for so many years. Eril-Fane, so broken inside that he has forgotten what it means to truly live.

Making these characters feel real and—more importantly—honest, could make or break them for readers, and Taylor did an excellent job. Again, without spoilers, tears were shed during this book, and it wouldn’t have happened had they not been created in such a way that their pain was mine, their joy also mine.

The story is a continuation of events that happened in Strange the Dreamer. They pick up immediately afterwards, as Lazlo and Strange realize that their lives are now changed forever—and not how they had hoped. I was a little thrown at first by some of the back-and-forth in the story, and was trying to figure out how it was all going to come into play. However, once it did, so many threads tied together in a completely unexpected way. A prior character that felt somewhat minor became a driving force, and events unfolded around a past that ultimately made them all. Having finished Muse, I can easily see that this duology was meant to be one fairytale, and simply ended up as two. And these days—we can ALL use a good fairy tale to remind us that goodness, love, and hope still exist in the world.

Sexual content: none

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Powered by WordPress | Designed by Elegant Themes
Malcare WordPress Security