Book Review: The Raven Boys

Hello! This is me coming out from the under what feels like the MOST HUMONGOUS GIANTEST HEAVIEST rock in the entire world, because I finally read The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (though I realize a great many of you have not read this book. It’s just that so many book bloggers have!). It only took everyone raving about the series finale (The Raven King) for me to get my butt in gear and read it. And I’m so glad I did! 

Book Review: The Raven BoysThe Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Raven Cycle #1
Published by Scholastic Press on September 18th 2012
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal
Narrator: Will Patton
Length: 11 hours and 8 minutes
Format: Audiobook

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue never sees them--until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks to her.

His name is Gansey, 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 is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul whose emotions range from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher 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 doesn't believe in true love, and never thought this would be a problem. But 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 the first in the tetralogy (that’s 4 in case you don’t want to google like I did) called The Raven Cycle. The story follows Blue, a powerless daughter in a family of clairvoyants, whose path becomes entangled with Gansey’s, a wealthy boy who attends the local private school, when she “sees” that he will die within the year. While trying to prevent his death, she ultimately befriends him and his three close Aglionby Academy friends.

The story is a slightly eerie Appalachian story. Elements of spiritual magic, psychic abilities, and deadly secrets are woven into the tale of the main characters as they search for the remains of a fallen, legendary king who is promises to grant a wish to his finder.

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1) magic, 2) fate, and 3) mystery

I must admit I listened to the audiobook, and I thought the narrator (Will Patton) was excellent. I felt as though his voices matched the personalities of the characters so well. Listening often lessens the book experience for me, so it is a testament to Stiefvater’s writing (and probably Patton’s narration) that I still became supremely interested in the storyline.

But frankly, it is the characters that really drive this story along. They’re all multi-dimensional, have wonderfully distinct personalities, and all possess little quirks that make them fun to read about.

This book has laid a fantastic foundation for the series. I just acquired The Dream Thieves  from the library and am so excited to dive into it. From what I’m hearing, the rest of the series doesn’t disappoint.

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I am almost certain this would be at least a 4.5 stars if I had read the book instead of listened to the audiobook (I just can never love an audiobook as much as I love reading the book itself!).

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Have you read the Raven Cycle? Which one in the series is your favorite?

Want to take The Raven Cycle plunge? Amazon. The Book Depository. Barnes & Noble.

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  1. I so agree about the characters. Every single one of them felt so well developed and intriguing. I’m really looking forward to finishing the series and getting to know all their back stories

  2. I tend to absolutely love audiobook versions because it forces me to slow the pace of my reading…I tend to speed read and miss things out – Whoops! I don’t love this series, I read the first book and just finished listening to The Dream Thieves and it was PAINFUL.

    I don’t get the hype. I am halfway through now, so may as well persevere.
    I just finished listening to Kulti by Mariana Zapata and it was amazing!!