Review: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Boys
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Book One of the Raven Cycle
Published September 18, 2012
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Buy this book from Amazon

I interchanged between listening to the audiobook on Scribd and reading the ebook on my Kindle Paperwhite and in paperback.


A mother (Maura) / daughter (Blue) conversation:
“‘…Are you messing around with drugs?’
‘No.  But maybe rituals.’
‘Drugs might be better.’
‘I’m not interested in them.  Their effects are proven–where’s the fun in that?'” pg. 377


Raised in a family of psychics, 16-year-old Blue Sargent knows she’s weird (and is totally okay with that)–until she meets four boys from the local private school who sucks her into their world of mystery, magic, and paranormal, turning her world upside-down.

For a full synopsis, visit Goodreads.


Days before The Raven Boys was published in 2012, New Line / Warner Bros. acquired the movie rights. (source)


I finally decided to give this book a go.  I mean, it was about time.  I had it sitting in my Kindle forever and I had the paperback.  But it wasn’t until I signed up for a trial on Scribd did I commit because Scribd offered the book in audio.

At first I was taken aback by the fact that the book was narrated by a man–because from reading the synopsis, I believed this book was about a girl named Blue Sargent.  But really this book was less about Blue and more about a story involving Blue.  This realization halfway through the novel wouldn’t have been so disappointing if Blue wasn’t so interesting!  But she was overshadowed by the bigger forces at play and to give it to Maggie Stiefvater, there was a hell of a lot going on in this town of Henrietta, VA to focus on one 16-year-old girl.

I’ve read a few other books by Maggie Stiefvater and her writing style remained consistent.  She had a calmness and subtlety in her tone, despite the chaos and paranormal events her characters found themselves in.  Her writing wasn’t flashy–it didn’t draw attention to itself.  Most of the time, I was digging this almost Zen-like mood.  Sometimes, however, I felt like the calmness ended up distracting me from the actual events of the story.  At times, I didn’t feel like I was grasping the importance or relevance of the situations.

The first 100 pages of the book, I was completely lost.  There was too much going on, too many characters with weird backgrounds.  It took me a while to comprehend that the “normal” in this book is the supernatural in our reality.  And yes, maybe I was just slow but I thought the blending of the author’s paranormal world with the real world could have been better.

In a throng of obscure characters, Blue and Gansey were definitely the most appealing.  I found myself not really invested in the love story (that doesn’t usually happen, by the way!) but in the mystery behind everything.  Also, there were some HILARIOUS parts.  I laughed so much with a line Ronan said about Noah and the whole “Blue/Jane” thing.


3stars
3 OUT OF 5 STARS
Overall, I give the book 3 stars.  It was interesting and well-written enough to keep me intrigued but I’m unsure as to whether or not I’ll continue the series (leaning more towards nahhh).


Maggie Stiefvater’s creativity is not bound to just writing–she’s an artist, as well.  She designed tarot cards and Llewellyn Worldwide bought the rights to release the deck.  You can view it here. (source)

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