Today I am so excited to share my spoiler-free review of Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor, which is the sequel to Strange the Dreamer. I was very lucky to have received an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) from NetGalley. To find out how to become a member, check out my previous post here. This review will be completely spoiler free, however it will contain spoilers from the first book, so if you haven’t read Strange the Dreamer, you may not want to look any further. Muse of Nightmares will be released October 2nd, 2018. Click here to pre-order a copy. I hope you enjoy all of my thoughts and opinions on the final book in this beautiful duology. Let’s get into it!
STRANGE THE DREAMER BRIEF SUMMARY
“The dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around.”
In this fantastical world, we follow orphan and junior librarian, Lazlo Strange, who has been obsessed with the mythical lost city of Weep his whole life. It has been two hundred years since it was cut off from the rest of the world. One day, Lazlo is invited to venture where no outsider has ever been before and restore Weep to greatness. In the lost city, five godspawn reside in a floating citadel, away from the humans they fear and despise. Each godspawn possesses a unique ability. Sparrow can make things grow, Ruby can ignite fire, Feral controls the clouds, Minya can tether the souls of ghosts to her person and Sarai can enter people’s dreams and provide them with nightmares. When Sarai discovers that Lazlo can see her in his dreams, the pair begin to fall in love, but it isn’t long before the humans who journeyed with Lazlo, attempt to bring the citadel and its inhabitants down. This leads Sarai to fall, impale herself on a pole and sadly die. Through these events, Lazlo discovers that he too is a godspawn (the son of Skathis). Via the power of his mind, Lazlo is able to manipulate the ancient metals holding up the citadel, which in turn sees his own flesh turn blue. Minya, who was present at The Carnage (a giant massacre that involved slaughtering innocent children), seizes the opportunity to hold Sarai’s soul hostage with a promise to disintegrate it forever unless Lazlo does as she commands. It is her ultimate desire to wreak torture and havoc upon the humans who were responsible for the deaths all those years ago. This is where we leave off…
This book is divided into several parts. At the beginning of each part, we readers bear witness to flashbacks involving new characters and sisters, Nova and Korako. We are given insight into how they gained their powers and where Wraith (the white ghost bird) originated. We also see the mysteries of the Mesarthim resurrected. Back in present day, Minya is determined to see Lazlo do her bidding and descend upon the city with a vengeance. If he does not comply, she will release Sarai’s soul into the ether forever. Desperate to keep the love of his life close, Lazlo sees no choice but to give in. In the town itself, the humans band together to rescue Lazlo, unaware of Minya’s evil intentions. When Ruby buys her fellow godspawn some time, Sarai is given the opportunity to enter Minya’s nightmares and learn more about The Carnage. Whilst it is implied that Minya is the primary villain, a more sinister threat from the past looms large…
I loved revisiting the world of Weep and its lovable characters. It was interesting to meet Nova and Korako, who possessed an interesting dynamic as sisters and allies. Korako is placid and loving whereas Nova is fiery and determined. The sequel definitely explores more secrets and answers many questions that surfaced in the first novel. As mentioned above, we are given a glimpse into Minya’s traumatic past and are finally able to sympathise with why she is so hellbent on revenge. Lazlo sees the most character development, as he evolves from a shy and awkward librarian into a confident and powerful godspawn. The relationship between Eril-Fane and Azareen is given more depth as is Ruby and Feral’s. Even alchemist Thyon Nero, is portrayed in a new, much more likable light. There is so much more but I cannot discuss it without revealing spoilers.
THE WRITING STYLE
Laini Taylor is an absolutely beautiful writer. She is descriptive beyond compare. I love the way she invites readers into her magical world by painting such a vivid picture you just want to be a part of. There is something so whimsical and enchanting about her writing style. I am keen to read more of her works.
My main issue and disappointment with this book (and why I gave it a lower star rating) is that I just wanted more. In my personal opinion, it needed to be expanded into a trilogy not a duology. It felt like the ending was too abrupt and certain parts dragged. I didn’t feel the same adoration that I did for Strange the Dreamer. I found myself skim-reading sections that bored me slightly. I still enjoyed it but unfortunately it didn’t meet my very high expectations.
I hope you enjoyed this honest, spoiler-free review. Once again thank you to NetGalley and the publishing company for sending me the ARC. Feel free to pre-order a copy for yourself from the link above.
Thank you for reading
Peace & Love xoxo
Disclaimer: This post contains links to my Book Depository Affiliate which helps fund my blog, I am not being paid or sponsored for this post/products – all my thoughts/opinions are my own