Review: The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven BoysThe Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
The Raven Cycle #1
Young Adult | Paranormal | Fantasy
Published by Scholastic Press on September 1, 2012
★★★★

“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before.

For years, I have been pressured to read this book. My book friends, my friends that have read it, Goodreads, BookTube–everywhere, everyone wants me to read this book. But finally, my English teacher decided to make The Raven Boys available for one of our Literature Circle books, and I snatched it up. A close friend of mine loves this series, and I figured why not?

Boy, am I glad that I decided to read this book. It was so good.

the writing was just beautiful & witty

Honestly, I hated Shiver, the werewolf book written by the same author. So, naturally, I figured I wasn’t going to like this book all that much. Yet a mere 30 pages into The Raven Boys, and I was in love. Henrietta, the boys themselves, Blue, and Blue’s entourage of physics–I fell in love with it all. (Not going to lie, but yes, I did fall in love with the Raven boys the most.)

Stiefvater’s writing is so vivid and her imagery is amazing. She portrays each character in a slightly different way, and I loved it. Also, the POV change should’ve annoyed me (I am not a fan of POV changes), but I loved how she did it in this book. It was smooth and each POV didn’t last too long. The whole book just flowed.

Yes, the pace was slow, but still

Yes, I admit that the first half of the book was a bit slow, but the writing and character setup was just too beautiful to not keep reading. In my opinion, this book was a character-driven book up until the end, which I was completely okay with.

Seriously. I just have so much love for this book.

Gansey, my love

I love Gansey. Although, that’s probably pretty expected because he’s Gansey. I love how his character was written. He had multiple layers and motivations, which made him out to be a more realistic character than most other novels. As a rich kid, you’d expect him to be pompous and conceited, but he wasn’t, which I loved.

He truly does care about all his friends–Ronan, Noah, Adam, and eventually Blue–which I admire in him. Truly, he is just an awesome person. (It doesn’t hurt that he’s book boyfriend material.) Plus, the dynamic between him and Blue was just… I love it. I love it all.

Adam, on the other hand…

Sadly, I did not like Adam. Yes, I get he has a hard home life. Yes, I get I probably should sympathize with him. Yes, I understand that everyone loooooooves Adam and he’s a smol cinnamon roll who needs to be protected (my close friend has an interesting choice of words when describing Adam Parish). But still. I don’t like him. Maybe it’s because he’s vying for Blue’s attention when she NEEDS to be with Gansey, but whatever.

Maybe it’s the way he treats Gansey and the way he views Aglionby boys and stuff, but either way, I don’t like him very much.

TL;DR

This book is beautiful. The writing is beautiful. The characters are beautiful. The premise is simply beautiful. Gansey is my baby, Ronan is my snake, Adam is my…bud… and Noah is my smol child. Basically, this book is just great. Albeit a bit slow at first, it’s totally worth the read, and I think you should at least give it a try. Stiefvater definitely switched up her writing style from when she wrote The Wolves of Mercy Falls. The Raven Boys is definitely a 2016 favorite of mine.

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3 thoughts on “Review: The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

  1. I’ve been meaning to read this book for a while because so many people seem to love it, so hopefully I’ll get to it soon. This review just bumped it up my TBR list! 🙂

    Like

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