Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Raven Boys

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
4.5/5 stars
Scholastic Press, 2012
408 pages
YA Paranormal

Source: Library

Wow, what can I say about this beautiful enchanting magical book? I'll admit that it took some time to become immersed in this book and I struggled with some character names at first and then later with some of their motivations and decisions (oh why, Adam?) But my overwhelming reaction is one of love tempered with the knowledge that this could be a very polarizing book. I can definitely see it not working for everyone although if we tend to agree on books, then you'll hopefully love this one.

One of the differences from much YA fiction is that this story is told in third person narrative shifting instead of the more typical first-person narrative. Most of the story focuses on Blue, daughter of a clairvoyant mother who does not possess any specific powers but does magnify them in others, an increasingly important talent as the story unfolds. But it also shifts to focus on the titular Raven Boys, specifically four young men (Gansey, Adam, Ronan, and Noah) with many secrets between them as well as the other characters who make up this story.

This book is just over four-hundred pages, which I feel is a bit on the long side for YA and I did feel like the story was a little slow especially in the beginning. However I persevered, having read other reviews assuring me that the payoff was worth it. And boy do I agree! The ending had me gripping the book so tightly, desperately scanning the words and flipping the pages to see what was going to come next. Every little piece at the beginning may have confused me then but by the end, I could see how it all tied together and led up to where the story is going to go. The ending even sort of ends with a cliffhanger as one of the boys reveals something that seems like it should be impossible...great way to leave me craving more.

Although I definitely think Stiefvater has a poetic writing style, I feel like it was lessened a little here, which is a good thing because that is sometimes a struggle for me.  Actually this book reminded me a bit of Unspoken but with less ha-ha funny moments (although still some good one-liners) and less alienating character/plot to me. I was able to fall much harder for this book.

Overall: My favorite Stiefvater yet-so so good!


  1. I can't wait to read this one. I've really enjoyed Steifvater's work and if this is your favorite one of her's this far, I'm sure to be in for a treat!

    - Jessica @ Book Sake

  2. Ah -- I've had this since May and still haven't managed to read it. I never feel like I have time and I don't want to rush through it. It's just sitting on my nightstand, making me feel guilty.

    Just finished Love and Other Perishable Items and now I need to go remember what you said about it. Because we do agree -- most of the time :)

  3. YAY!!! So glad you loved this book too! Wasn't that ending crazy? I just sort of stared at the last line and went "what?". Can't wait to see where things go from there, and how the relationship between Blue and each of the boys progresses:)

  4. I love, love, loved this book. I agree that it started out slow. I also agree that her writing was less poetic, but unlike her other books, it didn't need the beautiful writing to make the book good. The book stood on its own.

  5. Yay..... So glad you like this one too. I loved it. I can't wait to see what happens with Blue... Great review.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

  6. I've only read one book by Maggie (The Scorpio Races) and loved it, so I definitely need to check this out! Nice review :)

  7. I totally agree--it's not a book everyone will like, and I totally get why a lot haven't. But I loved it, and I'm glad you did, too! That Maggie is pretty amazing.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

  8. i can't believe i still haven't read this one yet i keep hearing amazing things about it. maggie definitely has a poetic style that i think sets her apart from other writers. glad you liked this one.

    thuy @ read now sleep later


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