“They’re too tired for bathing, but they’re not too tired for dreams. For dreams, too, are ghosts, desires chased in sleep, gone by morning. The longing of dreams draws the dead, and this city holds many dreams.”

16060716What is this book about?

Lair of Dreams is the sequel to The Diviners, a story set in New York in the 1920’s about teens with magical abilities. In part 2 we follow all the characters from part 1and meet a new Diviner called Ling who lives in Chinatown. In this part of the city originates a strange disease dubbed ‘The Sleeping Sickness’ that kills people in their dreams. As the title might give away, part 2 is about dreaming, dream-walkers, dream-demons and dream-dreamers.

Why is it boring?

I wouldn’t call the book boring, but a reason you might not want to read Lair of Dreams (just yet) is that Libba Bray is not a book-a-year writer. It took three years for Lair of Dreams to be done, and although the book is definitely worth it, you might not want to wait that long for part 3 and 4.

Who would you recommend it to?

If you read The Diviners and liked it and don’t have this book yet, then I don’t know what you’re doing with your life. And if you still haven’t read The Diviners, than I’m just going to refer you back to that review to get you interested in the series. Also, I would definitely recommend listening to the audiobook version of this one and The Diviners. January LaVoy is amazing and I want her to read to me every night.

Why should I read it if it’s boring?!

Compared to The Diviners, I thought Lair of Dreams was slower. It’s a long book and the story loses its steam a bit in the middle. Here we spend most of our time with Henry and Ling (our new Diviner who’s a dream-walker just like Henry). They both escape to their dreamworld to find the people they can’t have in the real world. The story is nice and Henry and Louis are adorable, but after a while I knew what Bray was trying to say and saw the twist coming from a mile away. Lair of Dreams does focus on different characters, giving Henry and Ling the spotlight instead of Sam and Evie. Ling’s character isn’t the most interesting one, but her tough-girl act and sarcasm are fun when Libba Bray writes them, so no complaints there. But for a book that’s this long, I did feel that the ‘old’ characters didn’t get as much time and development as they deserved. I feel like I barely got to spend time with Theta, Memphis, Mabel and Jericho and although that makes sense with such a large cast, I missed their presence. The book is too crowded for that and many characters from Ling’s life that were introduced in the start, never come back once she meets the Diviner gang. However, Evie and Sam were amazing as ever though. Every time they start bickering, it brings a smile to my face.  Bray does such a good job writing their lines and makes the chemistry sparks off the page. The book really comes together near the end, where the entire Scooby Gang gets together to try and beat the dream-demon and save NYC. This is where the story really shines. The action is exciting, the dialog is fast and fun and the book turns into a real page turner. We also get a bunch of amazing lines from a drunk Evie that had me laughing out loud. While Bray always does an amazing start, setting up the story and the atmosphere (the opening chapter is amazing and will immediately give you the chills), I always prefer her solutions to the story. The action never wanes and will keep you at the edge of your seat until the final page. Lair of Dreams is a great set up for part 3 and 4 with many references to ‘the man in the stovepipe hat’ who is creepy as fuck and the larger mystery of the people wearing strange eye-symbols and whatever happened to Sam’s mom. I promise that when you get to those final pages you’re going to throw this book across the room because you won’t get to find out what happens next for a couple more years.

Rating: 4/5

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Esmée de Heer is head honcho over at the Bored to Death book club website, writing the daily content and making sure the site stays up and running. She's one of the founding sisters of the book club and enjoys reading and giving unsolicited love advice.

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