Monday, February 4, 2013

Mini-Review: THE RAVEN BOYS by Maggie Stiefvater

Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Published: September 18th, 2012
Series: Raven Cycle #1
Genre: YA Fantasy/Paranormal
Publisher: Scholastic Press
POV: Alternating 3rd person
Pages: 408
Format: ARC PDF
Source: Netgalley / Publisher
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.
THE RAVEN BOYS is utterly unlike Maggie Stiefvater's previous works, which makes this story all the more intriguing. Fortunately, though the story and the POV are both very different than usual Stiefvater works, Stiefvater's writing remains evocative. Stiefvater's writing features words strung together in lovely, vivid ways that I've come to expect and enjoy. The characters, especially the leads, shine brightly with their vivid personalities - they demand your attention, and I was more than happy to give it. Yet, as much as I adored these characters, the story didn't quite turn out to be what I expected. Though it wasn't bad, it certainly didn't give me what the summary promised it would. Regardless, THE RAVEN BOYS is electric, mesmerizing, and somewhat strange (but in a good way). 

Highlights: Certain plot twists are almost unpredictable – especially one mind-blowing moment regarding one of the supporting characters. Speaking of characters, I could praise and adore them all day. They all feel different from one another, and I can't wait to read more about them in future installments. The settings are perfectly described. 

Lowlights: Slow going, like all Stiefvater stories. I feel like not enough was answered by the end, and the story cuts off in a very confusing moment. I expected a different story from reading the summary, so I was surprised when the whole Blue + Gansey romance ended up not being important (or even really present) in this book.



  1. Great review! I really need to check this book out sometime, although I don't know how soon that'll be. Maggie Stiefvater's books can be hit-or-miss for me sometimes...

  2. I agree with you that this one is different and a bit stranger than other Stiefvater stories. I love them all, there's no way I could ever choose a favorite, but The Raven Boys still stand out.
    The characters were fabulous too, and my jaw totally dropped that one time.
    Great review.

  3. I really loved this one, and I can't wait for the next books, though I was definitely expecting something different as well!

  4. I wish we'd gotten a few more answers as well, but it's clear the story is just beginning, hah. I'm glad you enjoyed it overall!

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

  5. Great review! I've had my eye on this book, but I'm not sure I will like it. I have in the past really enjoyed Stiefvater's writing style, but it always takes me awhile to get used to. I do like that there are unpredictable plot twists though--definitely love when that happens!

  6. Yes! I know exactly what mind-blowing situation you are writing about and I swear I almost fell off my chair! Loved this book! :)

    ~Sara @ Forever 17 Books

  7. I have yet to read this even though I've had an arc for a while now. I just didn't love the Wolves of Mercy Falls so I always stop before I read her books. I guess I just don't like her writing as much as most other people do.

    Thanks for the great review though, I'm glad you really liked it even if it was a little slow to start off with.

  8. I must give Maggie Stiefvater another chance. This sounds amazing and all of the reviews are getting me super excited! I liked that "Certain plot twists are almost unpredictable" because I tend to guess a lot of the big ones! Great review!

  9. After Forever's ending I was a bit suspicious towards this book, but it was very good. A little slow at times, but interesting nonetheless. I agree with you - a lot of questions piled up and not enough answers!

  10. I was definitely thrown by the romance in this book but I was absolutely swept away by this story and I can't wait for more in the series. Definitely my favorite Stiefvater!

  11. I love Maggie Stiefvater's writing. Her descriptions are lyrical. I am enthralled by how she phrases her words. This piece is lovely and haunting. I'm glad there is a sequel as I adore the characters already. She makes me a believer in her fairy tales. My only frustration is how quickly it ended. For me, her books can be hit or miss. This one is not to be missed.

    Maycee Greene (Premium SEO - Moses Lake)