Today I am excited to tell you about two books that I’ve recently read:
To be honest, I was hesitant to pick up Strange the Dreamer, because I didn’t quite enjoy Daughter of Smoke and Bone as much as I thought I would. However this book did not disappoint!
Secondly, I never read historical fiction. Like, at all (it’s bad), however I thought I’d give My Lady Jane a try since I heard that it is a fun read.
Anyway! Without further ado…
The dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around—and Lazlo Strange, war orphan and junior librarian, has always feared that his dream chose poorly. Since he was five years old he’s been obsessed with the mythic lost city of Weep, but it would take someone bolder than he to cross half the world in search of it. Then a stunning opportunity presents itself, in the person of a hero called the Godslayer and a band of legendary warriors, and he has to seize his chance or lose his dream forever.
What happened in Weep two hundred years ago to cut it off from the rest of the world? What exactly did the Godslayer slay that went by the name of god? And what is the mysterious problem he now seeks help in solving?
The answers await in Weep, but so do more mysteries—including the blue-skinned goddess who appears in Lazlo’s dreams. How did he dream her before he knew she existed? And if all the gods are dead, why does she seem so real?
Welcome to Weep.
What I liked
- The characters! I love Sarai, Feral, Ruby, Sparrow, and even Minya. It is a fun cast of characters who I want to continue reading about.
- LOTS of imagination. The world building is amazing. I love how magic works in this world, and the terminologies used to describe it. It feels like a world that is vast and magical, and that we are just skimming the surface in this book.
What I didn’t like
- I’m not very used to the omnipresent narrator. It seems like the story is written through one character’s POV at a time, but often perspectives change within a chapter or even within a paragraph.
- So far I’ve heard lots of praise about Laini Taylor’s writing style, so this is going to be an unpopular opinion. I feel a bit bogged down with the big words and the lengthy descriptions. (I like brevity, LOL!)
The Bottom Line: 4/5 stars
Though I am not used to the writing style and the POV switching, I enjoy the characters and the world building. This is a series that I look forward to continuing.
Edward (long live the king) is the King of England. He’s also dying, which is inconvenient, as he’s only sixteen and he’d much rather be planning for his first kiss than considering who will inherit his crown…
Jane (reads too many books) is Edward’s cousin, and far more interested in books than romance. Unfortunately for Jane, Edward has arranged to marry her off to secure the line of succession. And there’s something a little odd about her intended…
Gifford (call him G) is a horse. That is, he’s an Eðian (eth-y-un, for the uninitiated). Every day at dawn he becomes a noble chestnut steed—but then he wakes at dusk with a mouthful of hay. It’s all very undignified.
The plot thickens as Edward, Jane, and G are drawn into a dangerous conspiracy. With the fate of the kingdom at stake, our heroes will have to engage in some conspiring of their own. But can they pull off their plan before it’s off with their heads?
What I liked
- It’s a HILARIOUS book. Each characters have their own quirks – Jane likes books (a LOT), and Gifford is… well, a horse half the time. They make fun of each other and it’s all very funny to read.
- Light and easy to read.
- Unique writing style.
- Creative twist on history. I like that this book is not bogged down on facts, which is what intimidates me when it comes to the historical fiction genre. This may be a good place to start for beginners to the genre (such as myself.)
What I didn’t like
- TOO funny. And yes… there is such a thing. There are moments that are quite serious which is interrupted by a humorous commentary by the narrator or the intrusion of another character. It lightens up the mood, however it interrupts the flow of the scene.
- I don’t feel a connection to the characters. It’s true that they each have their own personalities: Jane is a bookworm, Gifford is a poet who wants to hide the fact that he is a poet, Edward is sexist but learns the errors of his ways, Bess is really REALLY smart. However, I don’t always understand the motivation behind their actions, which is frustrating.
- Pacing is slow. This is a fairly long book (almost 500 pages), and I felt impatient at times waiting for things to happen. (Again, I like brevity :’) )
The Bottom Line: 3/5 stars
My Lady Jane is a fun, light-hearted novel that made me smile and laugh out loud. However, I am frustrated by the slow pacing and the actions of the characters.