Sunday, November 18, 2012

Review: The Raven Boys

I bought this book when it was first released and started reading it immediately.  But then I stopped.  Why?  It's going to sound crazy, but I'll tell you anyway.

When I read a book with an amazing plot, wonderful characters, and just sheer beauty embodied on the pages, I will often stop halfway through reading it the first time.  Because that way the story isn't over, it can't end, and I won't have to stop living in this gorgeous world that someone else created.

That's how it was with The Raven Boys.

Blue is a mostly ordinary girl living in a house full of psychics.  She's been told all her life that when she kisses her true love, he will be dead within a year.  Blue has no psychic abilities of her own, but she somehow augments abilities in others, so she's usually present for readings that her mother and aunts give.

Gansey is a boy obsessed with finding Glendower, the lost king of Wales.  He's smart, rich, and charming and Blue is predisposed to dislike him on general principles.

Somehow, the two of them and Gansey's friends, Ronan, Noah, and Adam, come together to search for Glendower.

Maggie Stiefvater's writing style is, if anything, improving with each book.  I liked the Mercy Falls series.  I really liked The Scorpio Races.  And I loved The Raven Boys.  Ms. Stiefvater has an elegant, spare way of turning a phrase that I both covet and admire.  Her writing is smooth and economical, and the story flows smoothly.

I loved the characters and their development.  Adam, as proud as he is poor.  Noah, the forlorn fifth wheel.  Ronan, with his aggressive tattoos and barely contained temper, hiding a tragedy in his past.  Gansey, who can't help his riches or his charm, who only wants one thing; to find Glendower.  And Blue, who saw Gansey on the corpse road and knows that he is destined to die within a year.

The pacing is smooth and develops quickly without feeling rushed.  Once I was back into the book, I couldn't read fast enough, even knowing that I'd have to leave their world at the end.

This is my first official book review on my blog, and I think it's fitting to kick it off with a 5 star one.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater is available at and other fine booksellers.  I was not provided with a free copy for the purpose of this review.


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