Thursday, August 2, 2012

Book Review: The Raven Boys

“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.

I've been a fan of Maggie Stiefvater's books since I read Lament before most people had heard her name. And I've read each book as they've come out, or as an arc if I've been lucky enough to get my hands on a copy. I got my hands on a copy of The Raven Boys from my wonderful friend Sandy of Scribing Shadows. She is fantastic for sending it to me!

I loved this book. Her writing gets better with almost every book she puts out, and this book is no different. It might not be my favorite Maggie Stiefvater book, but Ballad and The Scorpio Races are hard to top! The Raven Boys makes a good effort to top them. Blue lives with her family. All women. All psychic. Blue is not, but her presence makes the rest of her family's powers stronger. She goes to the church on St. Mark's Eve, to watch the procession of people who are going to die soon. And she sees a young boy. Her age. But why can she see him? The response: “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.” But, really, it could be both, since her true love is destined to die if she kisses him.

But he's not just any boy. His name is Gansey, and he is a Raven Boy. The Raven Boys go to an all boys private school, Aglionby Academy, and Blue doesn't like a single one of these rich, pretentious teen guys. But Blue and Gansey (and his friends) are thrown together to figure out a mystery or two. Or three.

One of the best things about this story were the twists and turns. I really didn't know what to expect in this book. Even after reading it, I'm not sure if I would call it a contemporary with paranormal elements or and paranormal that at first seems contemporary. And it is so well pieced together, that you can't see the surprises coming. At least, I couldn't. And that is one of the signs of a really good book for me. The Raven Boys is not like any other novel I've read. And I don't believe there's another one out there that even comes close in terms of the plot. Whether or not you've read anything by Maggie, I imagine you'll love the first book in The Raven Cycle. I can't wait for book two!

And... if that's not enough for you to want to pick this book up, check out the amazing animated trailer Maggie Stiefvater made. She is amazingly talented.

And be sure to check out Maggie Stiefvater's site for Raven Boys to meet the characters, view extras, and even download the song from the trailer.


Cherry said...

I love Maggie's book so so much! Can't wait to read this one and great review!

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