The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Book 1 in The Raven Cycle series
Genre: YA paranormal, fantasy
Format: hardback, library
I’ve heard raving reviews about this book and this series — other bookworms and bloggers praise and obsess over it. I was eager to get into it when I found a copy at my local library.
And then I actually started reading. I tried to like it. I tried to push through and find out for myself exactly what made other bookworms and bloggers love it so much. But I just couldn’t do it, and I’m sad to say I DNF’d it 48% through (page 198 to be exact). 😦
It was unique. It felt like a completely new idea and unlike anything I’d ever read or heard of. But to me it was boring. I wasn’t intrigued by what was happening or what might happen next, and I was kind of wondering why the Raven Boys were searching for ley lines in the first place. I also thought the pacing was slow. I can understand building suspense/intrigue, but I was halfway through the book and not much had happened.
The cast of characters in this book were clever and they all had something unique about them, but I couldn’t get attached to any of them. For me, that’s one of my biggest issues with books — whether or not I like characters enough to get attached to them.
Blue is the only non-psychic in a family of female psychics. She increases the energy the other women receive if she’s in the same room, but she doesn’t have abilities of her own. She’s a quirky teen (I have nothing against that, as I’m one too), as well as an outcast. She gets clothes from Goodwill but puts her own spin on them, because she comes from a poor family (which is why she dislikes Aglionby boys). She kind of reminds me of Eleanor from Eleanor & Park, but with a better home life and more paranormal aspects mixed in. I did like her personality at times, so that was nice, but other times I thought she was a bit too judgmental.
I felt mostly the same for the Raven Boys. I liked Gansey’s loyalty to the other three boys, but I thought that sometimes he acted a bit too much like an average rich boy. I think my favorite was Adam, just because he had a more modest life and was generally sweeter to people. I liked the way he treated Blue. I had mixed feelings about Ronan, though. He had a general bad, sarcastic attitude, but he also was kind enough to take in and care for a baby raven. I like boys similar to that in books, but I think that otherwise Ronan was brusque, particularly toward his older brother Declan. I don’t like that as much. And I don’t have much of anything to say about Noah because I feel like he wasn’t present enough for me to really form an opinion on him.
This book takes place in Henrietta, Virginia. Not very much of it was explored, but the descriptions for the few areas I did read about (Blue’s house, Gansey’s apartment, Adam’s neighborhood, and Nino’s) were done well. I could imagine the characters there and being there myself. I did enjoy that. 🙂
There was no romance yet, but I know everyone’s favorite ships are Blue with Gansey and Adam with Ronan. Personally, I think Blue and Adam would be a cute couple, but if Adam really is gay (I’m not actually sure) then that’s just a daydream.
However, I did like the familial relationship between Blue and the other women. My favorite was probably Calla, because she was kind of amusing a few times and, in my opinion, the most supportive of Blue.
I also liked the friendship between the Raven Boys. They were very loyal to each other and seemed to be a fun group if everyone was getting along. 🙂
I have nothing to say here because, up to the point I stopped at, there were no twists to mention. From what I’ve heard there’s a huge twist towards the end, but I was hoping there would be more smaller ones sprinkled in until then. But, unfortunately, there weren’t. 😦
I wanted to finish this and like it as much as everyone else does, but I just couldn’t. The plot was boring and slow and I couldn’t get attached to any of the main characters. I’m sad to say that for me personally, The Raven Boys didn’t live up to the hype surround it. 😦
my rating: 1½ out of 5 stars
Note: I wasn’t trying to be harsh in any way, and I would still recommend this book if you haven’t read it. You might like it. 🙂
Have you read this book? Is it on your TBR? If you have read it, what did you think? I’d love to know! 🙂
I’ll be reading either The Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima or The Iron King by Julie Kagawa next. Hopefully I’ll like them more. 😉