The Magnificence That Is Strange The Dreamer + How To Make Strange The Dreamer Butterfly Inspired Cupcakes

by - Thursday, April 13, 2017

Strange The Dreamer | sprinkledpages

Hey friends!

I hope you’re all having a lovely Friday! 

Today I am here to share with you my review for the gorgeous book that is Strange The Dreamer by Laini Taylor! I am sure many of you have heard about this book already but if you haven’t, it’s a YA fantasy by the author of the Daughter Of Smoke And Bone trilogy and I believe it is intended to become a series (not sure how many books yet, I don’t think it’s been confirmed) and I am eager for the next one because this one ends on a cliff hanger! 

ALSO! I made a cupcake recipe for this book! YES, I  know that it is a moth on the cover and NOT a butterfly but would you really like to eat something titled 'moth cupcakes'? No. So that's why they have been called 'butterfly cupcakes' but let's just imagine them to be 'winged insects cupcakes'. (That doesn't sound much better does it? Oops)

Going into this, there was a lot of hype. Not only is the book itself utterly gorgeous *makes heart eyes at the book* but the premise sounded so mysterious and alluring and I had heard such positive thoughts circulating about it in the book community! 

While I wasn’t the hugest fan of the Daughter Of Smoke And Bone series as a whole, I did really enjoy the first book and wanted to give this one a shot too! THIS IS NO SPOILER. 

Stick around to read some of my thoughts on the book below!

About the book. 

Book: Strange The Dreamer
Series: Strange The Dreamer
Author: Laini Taylor
Pages: 533
Publisher: Hodder And Stougan
Publication date: March 2017
Australian RRP: $19.99 pb
Synopsis: 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?
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Recommended for: Anyone 12+

Thank you to Hachette Australia for providing my a review copy however this is an honest review and all thoughts and opinions are my own.

My thoughts.


So without a doubt, Laini Taylor’s writing is spectacular. She has a way with words and everything she writes manages to sound poetic (to the point where even her grocery lists would probably be a work of art). The writing just ensnares you into this magical, mystical world. It’s spectacular to read and worked so well with this whimsical style of a book! 

Strange The Dreamer | sprinkledpages

However, in this book in particular, while she does a magnificent job of describing people, their personalities and maybe whimsical things like the sky, she didn’t describe the scene or setting AT ALL which meant I really struggled trying to imagine Weep or how they got there or what had happened to it or where it was located. There was no map provided either and I struggled a lot with the setting. 

{ IDEA }

I thought the idea for Strange was really amazing! Laini has a way of coming up with the most insane amazing ideas and this was no exception. I thought it fit so well with this book as it was so out of this world and unimaginable. It is something I’d never have thought up of myself. It’s so lyrical and eternal and stunning and GAH I need more adjectives. 

I also liked how the book referenced dreaming in itself within the book, which many books don’t do (eg refer to their title directly in the book). I can’t explain exactly why, but it just made it more magical and helped to connect the dots a little. 

The references to books and libraries all made me super happy too! It’s a little weird but there aren’t many books on characters who like to read, which is slightly ironic if you think about it. 

{ PLOT }

Going into this, the blurb told me nothing about the book. It is really vague. Other bloggers weren’t really able to explain what the book was about either because the plot and idea is a little too complex to explain just like that. It’s something you need to read to understand. I had no idea what to expect at all even as I was reading it as this was such an out-there idea that it was impossible to predict the outcome of the story! 

I thought however it had some good twists and turns and the unpredictability parts confused and parts excited me. The pacing was a little off at times where the start was so slow and the end,  which was the best bit, got rushed and cramped and that annoyed me a little. 

It may work for some people who love going in blind and not knowing how the story pans out but for those who need to know what it is about before reading it, it won’t really suit them.


The characters in this were pretty loveable! 

Lazlo is such a sweet heart and totally my soulmate on so many levels. He loves books and stories as much as I do and he was such a gentleman, I loved him. More characters (or people) need to exist like him! He was super loveable and I liked how he didn’t look very outwardly handsome or strong or a golden boy because it made him all the more precious and relatable and realistic. 

Strange The Dreamer | sprinkledpages

Sarai, I liked less, just because I felt I couldn’t always relate to her, but I thought despite that, she was very kind hearted and headstrong. I liked the mix of confidence and shyness her character was made of. 

The romance is a slow burn and I honestly loved it. It was a little like insta-love but I felt it was justified in the scene and setting they were in and I thought it worked for this book! 


Overall, I really enjoyed Strange The Dreamer. It was well written and had such sweet, loveable characters. There were slight issues I had such as it being a little confusing and the pacing being off but it left me wanting more and I can’t wait for the next book!


Have you read Strange The Dreamer? What did you think? And if not, are you planning to?


Strange The Dreamer inspired! (Yes, I know they are supposed to be 'moth' cupcakes but I didn't think that would sound as appealing so let's just roll with the term 'butterfly')

Butterfly Cupcakes | sprinkledpages

  • Plain vanilla cupcakes (I tinted mine blue using food colour but you don't have to do this - I used this recipe for the cupcake base but them buttercream for the icing while they used thickened cream)
  • Buttercream (I also tinted this blue but don't feel like you have to do this either - I used this recipe halved to make them)

  1. Follow the steps of this recipe. (Just because they explain it better than I do and they have a video instructing you too) BUT DO NOT USE THE THICKENED CREAM AND JAM! You can if you want, but I tried it and it was a mess and the thickened cream didn't taste nice at all. Buttercream is much better. 
  2. Once you have the cupcakes made with the centres cut out and the 'wings' made, pipe your buttercream into the hole created 
  3. Place the wings onto the buttercream 
  4. Dust with icing sugar (optional)
Quick note, I know my cupcakes turned out a little funny in the colour and that's because the tops browned while in the oven. To avoid having that brown layer, just remove the top layer of the cupcakes (which I should have done too - note to self).

VOILA! You have your finished cupcakes!

If you have questions about this, because I know it was a little confusing, feel free to DM me on Twitter or email me at or leave your question in the comments! 

AND IF YOU RECREATE THIS, PLEASE DO LET ME KNOW! I love to see re-creations! <3 div="">

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22 happy thoughts

  1. I have heard mainly good things about this book but for some reason I just don't have the desire to pick it up *hides* I wasn't the biggest fan of DOSAB, and even though I want to continue the series it's never one that I gravitate to when I am an dire need of something to read and cannot pick what.

    Also, I have SO many series that I am currently reading and I am trying to cut down on the completed ones before I start too many new ones!

    I'm glad you liked it, though :D

    I don't really mind slow books when they're done right, but lack of setting description always gets to me. I love the fact that book loving characters are in this! I swear there are not enough of them around.

    I think your butterfly cupcakes are adorable! :D

    1. I totally get where you are coming from Chiara! I personally loved the first book of DOSAB but the rest were a let down so I was pretty apprehensive going into this!

      And thank you so much! <3

  2. Cute cupcakes! Haha- yeah, 'moth cupcakes' don't sound as appealing. I haven't read any of her books, but want to! Glad to hear this on isn't just a pretty cover.

    1. Thanks so much! And yes, it really isn't just a pretty cover!

  3. Your fairy cakes are super cute Anisha! (to stop them from browning you can put a sheet of foil over the tray) I usually end up covering them in icing anyway bahaha

    I loved this book, Lazlo is such a darling and the whole world Laini created just blew my mind, I didn't really like Sarai till 50% in though but I ended up really enjoy her :) I don't know if it was just because I was so entranced in the story and read it super slow but I could imagine all the settings beautifully xD The dreams were my fave I loved how Lazlo could manipulate his surroundings.

    I neeeed the next book already that ending was so mean!

    1. OMG THANKS SO MUCH BAKER CASEY! I should have asked you before oops! But I know where to go now!

      Lazlo is a cutie and I can't wait to see more of him!

  4. Beautiful review, Anisha! <3 I keep hearing wonderful things about this story, and despite not knowing a lot about the plot, everyone's making me so curious. I want to go into this blind and enjoy the experience just like you did. I also love the cover, it's soooo stunning.
    AND THE CUPCAKES OMG I LOVE YOU, Anisha. These look just as stunning as the book, and it's making me sooooooo hungry ahah. Have to try these :)

    1. AHA THANK YOU SO MUCH MARIE YOU ARE THE CUTEST PERSON OMG ILY! I hope you enjoy it when you do get around to reading it!

  5. I skimmed your review, because I really want to read this. I have not read her other series, but heard amazing things about her writing so I am super curious what kind of a world she baked up in this one. You have really been tackling some beautiful books lately huh?

    1. YES I HAVE! (And I totally love it!) I hope you enjoy it whenever you get around to reading it Lily!

  6. HAHAHA "moth cupcakes"... XD I agree, butterfly cupcakes are much better haha. They look delicious! And I'm so glad you enjoyed this book. I hope to revisit with an audiobook and I maybe I'll enjoy it more then :)

    Brittany @ Brittany's Book Rambles

    1. Thank you so much Brittany! Sorry to hear you didn't love it that much the first time around!

  7. I loved the DOSAB trilogy but haven't gotten around to reading this one yet. Laini's writing is amazing so I've got high hopes for this. Now if I can only find the time to read it!

    1. I hope you get around to it soon! They are all very very amazing!

  8. OOOOOHHHH! I've been dying to get my hands on this book for FOREVER. I haven't read Daughter of Smoke and Bone despite desperately wanting to, but I HAVE BEEN SO EXCITED FOR THIS FOR A REALLY LONG TIME and I so hope it releases in India.
    This is such a lovely review and I'm SO GLAD you enjoyed the book.
    I should also mention that I've been stalking your insta page with ALL THE LOVELY CUPCAKES because THEY LOOK SO DELICIOUS and I need them.

    Have an awesome bookish weekend Anisha!
    Aditi @

    1. OMG I HOPE YOU CAN GET A COPY OF IT ADITI! And if not, are you able to order online?

      And thank you so much (especially for the spam of comments on so many of my blog posts you are the very best, that honestly means the world to me!)


  9. This was such an incredible book. Laini Taylor's writing style is so beautiful. It took a lot out of me, but I loved it!! Great review, Anisha! The cupcakes look so good too :D

    1. Thank you so much Lauren! You are too kind! <3

  10. LOVE LOVE LOVE this Anisha! These look so tasty! And I cannot wait to read Strange the Dreamer. Fantastic post! <3
    Megan @

    1. Thank you so much Megan! I hope you enjoy it when you do get around to reading it!

  11. Oh my goodness, those cupcakes look so delightful! I think I'm going to have to pick up a copy of the book, make the cupcakes, and have a delicious weekend! so glad to see you enjoyed the book, too!

    1. Thank you so much Kelly! You're too kind!


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