Book Review: MUSE OF NIGHTMARES (Strange the Dreamer #2) by Laini Taylor

A disappointing sequel.

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SYNOPSIS

Sarai has lived and breathed nightmares since she was six years old.
She believed she knew every horror, and was beyond surprise.
She was wrong.

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?

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Title: Muse of Nightmares

Author: Laini Taylor

Publication: October 2, 2018 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Genre: Fantasy, Romance

Target audience: Young Adult

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Rating: 🌵🌵

No one is more disappointed at this rating than I am.

I honestly didn’t expect to not love this. I loved Strange the Dreamer (see my review here) – the characters, the world building, just everything.

But Muse of Nightmares was a huge disappointment.

And this is actually so confusing. Everyone loved this book, just I did not. Kinda makes me feel as if it’s my fault that I didn’t adore this book. Horrible feeling.


Let’s start with the good because that’ll go faster than starting with the bad.

The writing. Laini Taylor’s writing was lovely, just like in Strange the Dreamer. A little less quote-worthy but I enjoyed it.

The world building. Ok, ok, the world building is the same as in Strange the Dreamer but I love this world so much that I have to mention this again. Also, we get to know the Mesarthim’s past and more of this strange world, so that is great.

Before we meet Sarai and Lazlo again, we get introduced to a new pair of characters – Nova and Kora. I’ve heard some people say that they were bored by their story but damn, they were the best part of this book. Not kidding. I was so invested in their story. Their sisterly love for each other was so limitless and pure, much better than another love story in this book *cough*.

That’s… it. The good. Now the bad.

The plot. The fucking plot. Or rather, the lack of a plot.

Nothing. Is. Happening. The first 300 pages? Nothing. Only Lazlo and Sarai making out. There are some ‘revelations’ but they were so obvious that it only ended up being silly to make such a big deal out of them.

After these excruciating 300 pages, something is finally happening. Thanks to Nova and Kora. I can’t thank these two enough. I would’ve preferred to read just about them to be honest. Through their story, Taylor spun a few new threads and I am looking forward to seeing what she’s going to do with them. This book may have disappointed me but I’m not ready to give up on Laini Taylor.

The characters. That probably hurt the most.

If you’ve read my review of Strange the Dreamer, you know that I’m completely in love with Lazlo Strange. That longing in him, that hope, you could all feel that. There were scenes were his dreams seemed to have shattered and they hurt so much, my heart ached.

All this seems to have vanished in Muse of Nightmares.

It feels as if he is a completely different person. All that made him so lovable – gone. Now that he has achieved his goal, finding Weep, he seems… stagnant. There’s nothing urging him forward, nothing that he cares about….

….except for Sarai. And so, we come to the next problem.

I didn’t like Lazlo and Sarai’s romance in Strange the Dreamer. They fell in love too quickly and I just didn’t feel it. I suppose I should’ve expected that this was going to be even worse in the sequel. They do nothing but make out and declare their undying love for each other. I can’t understand this. They’ve known each other for what? Two weeks? And already they would sacrifice everything for the other, even people’s lives. Yeah, no, not cool.

There’s another thing that bothered me. That whole business about Sarai being dead and a ghost.

As a ghost, Sarai can do practically everything a human can do – and she’s even more powerful. And that makes her death feel so meaningless. Her family mourns her, they even hold a funeral, but it seems so ridiculous when she is right next to them.


There are other things I also didn’t like, but I feel like these were the most important ones. All in all, I am really disappointed by this book and don’t understand the love it gets. But whatever. I’ll try to get this version of Lazlo out of my head because I want my boy back.


Have you read this book? If yes, how did you like it? If not, do you want to read it? Let me know down below in the comments!

5 thoughts on “Book Review: MUSE OF NIGHTMARES (Strange the Dreamer #2) by Laini Taylor

  1. Ah pity this wasn’t for you- but no need to feel bad about it! I think it’s fair about the plot and that you weren’t feeling the romance- those are pretty big things- so if it didn’t work for you it would naturally get in the way of your enjoyment of the book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah but it’s still pretty sad that I didn’t like this. I loved Strange the Dreamer and wanted to love this too 😥 But I’m ready for some more Laini Taylor! I’ve got Daughter of Smoke and Bone at home and I can’t wait to read it!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Yearly Wrap-Up // 2018 // My Year in Books – jessythecactus

  3. Pingback: Review: “Muse of Nightmares” by Laini Taylor – a myriad of books

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