Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The Dream Thieves

The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater
4/5 stars
Scholastic Press, 2013
438 pages
YA Paranormal

Source: Received an e-ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

After first book The Raven Boys absolutely enchanted me last year (becoming my favorite Stiefvater novel), of course I wanted to read its sequel. The only problem was not quite being able to remember everything that happened. I remember finishing it on my couch before a Manchester United game started and then clutching it to me because it was a hard copy but specific plot details? Not important enough for my stupid brain to remember!

Still I pretty easily slid back into the world. I certainly remembered Blue and the prophesy about her true love dying after receiving a kiss from her as well as her family of psychics. I definitely remembered the Raven Boys, Gansey, Adam, Ronan, and Noah though I had forgotten something important about Noah even as the text eventually reminded me of that. I knew about their quest for Glendower and the steps they had taken up to that point while I wondered what was to come next.

This sequel definitely gave me some similar feelings to the first book as I became immersed in the world and tried to follow everything that is happening. But in the first book, it all seemed to come together in a beautiful magical way whereas this felt dull. I'm not the biggest fan of Ronan and he is the main focus so that didn't help. I felt like The Raven Boys, though definitely focused on Gansey, also gave a lot of time and attention to the other characters. This book didn't. It was mostly Ronan and his dream thieving as hinted by the cover and title with Noah barely showing up, Adam continuing to have the most ginormous chip on his shoulder about his poverty, Gansey's obsession with Glendower being put on a backburner, and Blue bristling at not being included like one of the boys: those are their basic stories and it was not near as expansive and enchanting as in The Raven Boys. Meanwhile like I said, Ronan's story was added to; I will only be able to tolerate this if Adam gets similar treatment in book three or four because Ronan is my least favorite and I find him irksome.

Overall: I liked it but I was disappointed. I had hoped this second book would increase my love of the series but instead I felt a little bit like I was marking time and missing more than a few plot points despite my close reading. I still intend to try the third book when it comes but I'm less excited about it.

Other Opinions: My blogging friends wrote loads of amazing thoughtful reviews of this book; here is a *small* sample. Stiefvater writes so beautifully and it obviously inspired them:
Books Live Forever
Jen Ryland/YA Romantics
Love is not a triangle
The Flyleaf Review
The Midnight Garden
The Sirenic Codex
Unforgettable Books
VeganYANerds

34 comments:

  1. It's too bad you didn't enjoy this one as much. My co-bloggers has been pestering me to read this one for the longest time, but I don't see myself enjoying it as Maggie's writing, though beautiful, is too slow for my liking. Good luck with the next book in this series. I hope you like it more :)

    -Mari @ The Sirenic Codex

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    1. Definitely slow-it worked in the first book because I loved the way everything came together but even I thought this one was too slow.

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  2. I think this one made me like Ronan more, but yeah, I'm hoping everyone gets their story focused on. (Which seems kind of impossible with four books and five main characters.) I definitely missed Noah in this one.

    I'm just so afraid all of these characters are going to meet sticky ends.

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    1. There was hardly any Noah, which is kind of understandable but since Ronan is my least favorite, this didn't much work for me.

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  3. Oh wow, we totally disagree! Ronan wasn't our favorite character or anything, but getting such insight into him made us appreciate him more. We love him now -- not in a romantic way, but in a "come here, I want to hug you, you poor soul" kind of way. Same is true of Adam, though we were starting to worry seriously about him turning into a bad guy. Thankfully by the end of TDT he seems to have sorted out a bit. And oh the relationships! Our heart aches in so many different directions for these wonderful characters. Who knows how it will all turn out. Well, we can't wait to find out! Maggie's writing is so gorgeous, her imagination so incredible. We'll read absolutely anything by her.

    Can't believe you didn't mention the Gray Man... ;P

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    1. I wasn't really sure what to say about the Gray Man-I didn't want to get in to spoilers but I felt bad for leaving him out. Still I am more interested in the core group of five than anything else.

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  4. Aw, I'm sorry you didn't fully love it :\ but glad you still enjoyed it :) I really, really loved it. <3 cannot wait for book three :) Thank you for sharing. <3

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    1. I will definitely still be waiting for book 3, which will hopefully look more at Blue, given how this book ended, or maybe Adam.

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  5. I loved the first book too! I still have this one to read. Most of the reviews I've seen have been positive. I'll have to see what I think.

    Tressa @ Tressa's Wishful Endings

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    1. I thought this one wasn't as good but maybe my expectations were too high. I hope the third book will rekindle my love.

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  6. Nice post.

    THANKS for stopping by my blog earlier.

    Have a great day!!

    Elizabeth
    Silver's Reviews
    My It's Monday, What Are You Reading

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    1. Thanks-I hope you have a great day too!

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  7. I have found so many middle books disappointing lately and that is so sad

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    1. I have raed some great middle books this year but this was a lesser on for me-just too much Ronan.

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  8. Someone who finally doesn't LOVE Ronan. I think he is an interesting character, but he is definitely not my favorite either. I agree about him being kind of irksome at times, and he always seems a bit off which annoys me. I do love all the other characters though, and I am glad this was a good read for you overall :)

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    1. Yay-we agree! I feel bad that I don't like him more but I force myself. If the other characters had had more page time (I thought they were more evenly represented in TRB), I probably would have felt better.

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  9. I'm glad that you still liked this one, even thought you're not a Ronan. I am hoping the next next book has more of everyone else too. :)

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    1. Ronan is okay but he's definitely my least favorite-hoping for great things from book 3!

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  10. Wonderful review! Ah, Ronan is not a favorite for me too. Its tough remembering everything that happened in a complex first book. I'm glad you had a decent idea. Thanks for including my review!

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    1. Yay another person who doesn't adore Ronan-I feel like we're in the minority but not everyone can love him.

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  11. I liked The Raven Boys but didn't love it, I thought it was a lot more complex than her Wolves of Mercy Halls series (which I adored) but I just didn't 'feel' it. I'm always disappointed when a 2nd book feels like 'filler'. I'm sure I'll get to this one eventually as I'm a huge fan of Maggie's beautiful writing but I don't think I'll be rushing.

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    1. I didn't quite think that this was filler but I feel like things could have been condensed more, maybe so this would be a trilogy rather than a quartet.

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  12. I haven't read The Raven Boys yet, but that's probably good because I can read them closer together and forget less. I have been anxious to fit them in though! It's too bad this one didn't WOW you just a bit more though.

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    1. I bet it will be nice for those who wait to read them all back to back-a fun experience.

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  13. I still haven't read this series but I remember being disappointed by Linger after enjoying Shiver. That series didn't end well either. I hope this series is much better. I think I will wait to pick it up till the series is complete.

    I hope that the final book will be a better reading experience for you.

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    1. I liked Wolves of Mercy Hall all right but was let down by all the Ronan instead of a more even distribution.

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  14. I love Ronan, so I think that helped. But I wished Noah got some more page time too, and Adam and his chip on the shoulder annoyed me up until the end, when I started liking him better. I had the same problem as you though, with not remembering all of what had happened in the first book :)

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    1. Right? All the personalities are so complex and deserving of attention that I was disappointed that so much was lavished on Noah to, in my opinion, the detriment of the others.

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  15. It's definitely hard to get back into a series when you've read the previous book so long ago and you can't remember what happens. I tried to take copious notes on this book so I could review them before book 3 comes out. I agree that The Raven Boys was magical, enchanting and perfect Stiefvater. I'm sorry that this one disappointed you as comparison, but I'm hoping that the next brings it around.

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    1. It's a good idea to take notes but I usually don't have the time (and I'd probably lose them before I got to book 3 anyway). I'm hoping the next one will improve for me too!

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  16. OH see I love Ronan so I had the opposite reaction. You know who is getting the shaft is Noah - he deserves a perspective instead I feel like he's just window dressing. My favorite scene in the book was with him and Blue and their you know...

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    1. That is a great scene-pretty much his only moment to shine. I understand putting him in the background but I thought there could have been quite a bit more of Adam and Blue to balance out the focus on Ronan (just too much!)

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  17. So funny -- I enjoyed this book even more than the first. I felt that I got much better insight into Gansey and Ronan, and that I understood everything better. Ronan isn't a character I can relate to, but I loved the interplay between him and Kavinsky…
    Jen @ YA Romantics

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    1. I hated his interplay with Kavinsky-see why this didn't really work? I thought Gansey got some good page time this go-around but Blue and Adam suffered that lack (Blue probably being my favorite after all.)

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