Review: Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray

Featured imageWarning: Spoilers will happen

I’m not even sure where to begin!  There is always a risk that when you loved a book so much and waited so long for the sequel that when it finally comes out, it doesn’t live up to your expectations.  I’m happy to say that didn’t happen here.  Lair of Dreams is same mixture of humor, creepiness, suspenseful mystery and 20’s glamour.  The stakes are much higher since Evie announced to all of New York City and the world that she is a Diviner.  This of course brings up new opportunities for her and her friends but also new complications.  The mystery man in the stovepipe hat is gaining more ground and even though we still don’t know much about him, the fact he lingers in the background only makes everything else that much more of a mystery.  Why now are Evie, Sam, Theta, Memphis, Henry and others just discovering their powers or their powers getting stronger? And what is Project Buffalo? There is so much to talk about so let’s get to it.After Evie defeats Naughty John and then outs herself has a diviner, she’s the toast of the town.  You could say, she becomes one of the first reality star when she gets her own radio show and divines for a studio audience.  Of course not everyone are feeling the diviners.  The religious fervor seen in The Diviners are still not mention the mystery government agency behind Project Buffalo, that we still don’t know much about but do get a few details thanks to flashbacks from Uncle Will.  The gangs relationships are strained.  Evie is living the high life in various hotels around New York after falling out with Will and is avoiding Jericho after their kiss.  She is almost too busy to hang out with Theta and Mabel.  Henry meets another Dream walker named Ling and the two of them find his long lost love, Louis and now all Henry wants to do is sleep to be with him and throws his relationship with Theta at risk.  Issac is upset that Memphis is spending so much time with Theta and is spending way to much time with the dangerous Big Bill Johnson. Jericho and Sam are almost the only two who are still getting along if you can say they ever really got along  because they have a common goal to the Museum of Creepy Crawlies open.

Unlike the first book where the supernatural threat was obviously supernatural or occult based, not so much here.  The mysterious sleeping sickness is sweeping through Chinatown and panic has gripped the city.  As health official try to figure out why people are unable to wake up from their sleep and burning from the inside out.  Anti-Chinese sentiments grip the city as calls to close off the neighborhood and deport all them out of the country become louder.  Maybe our heroes would have been more aware of what was going on if they were not so wrapped up in their own personal dramas.  Not to mention all of their powers are growing and none of know why or for what purpose. Of course, you can’t really blame them too much, they are teenagers after all.

I do admit, I felt the novel started off a bit slow and I was disappointed that I had to wait until page 70 of my ARC before Memphis’ first chapter, other then that it was a solid effort.  Once it got going, I couldn’t put it down.  Henry and Ling are more in the focal point then Evie and the others and I enjoyed getting to know Henry more and Ling I like from the beginning.  My heart broke when I figured out what was going on and hoped that I was wrong.  When I was proven right, it just made it worse.  The feels are real people!  Evie gets in a spot of trouble when Sam jokingly says to a reporter that he and Evie are engage.  Thanks to all the publicity it made Evie and her radio more popular and they forced to pretend they are couple.  Problem is, Sam wishes it was true even if he says otherwise and Evie doesn’t know what she feels.  She definitely has feelings for him but she also definitely has feelings for Jericho, who is definitely off limits since Mabel has dibbs.  Their banter back and forth are just gems.  I could read a whole book of them insulting each other.

I’m not sure if this going to be a trilogy or more.  I hope more because I feel there is a lot of things that need to be explored that one more book is not going to be enough.  The strength of this series is that Miss Bray nails the time period of the twenties.  She gets the lingo and the optimistic feel of the period but she doesn’t ever shy away from the ugliness of the time period either.  Times are changing and with it comes fears of the unknown and well we don’t have the best record when dealing with the unknown.  Add to that people with supernatural powers and well you can tell things are going to explode in future books.  Like all good mysteries, it answered some questions only to ask more.  Making the wait for the next book that much harder.  I really do hope we won’t have to wait another two years.

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