September 14, 2012

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Release Date: September 18, 2012
Publisher: Scholastic
Pages: 390
Series: Raven Cycle
Review Source: Netgalley

Synopsis: (from Goodreads)
“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

My Thoughts:
I absolutely adored ‘The Scorpio Races’, so there was no question about whether or not I would check out Maggie’s new series. The concept was so interesting sounding, and after reading ‘The Raven Boys’ there's also no question in my mind about how intriguing this book is. When thinking of how to express my feelings for this book “intrigued” is the word I keep coming back to and using over and over again. I really don’t know of any other book like it, which makes it stand out all the more. The fusion of history, legend, treasure hunting, and the occult make for an irresistible combination.

One reason why I appreciated ‘The Raven Boys’ so much is because I love history and historical mysteries; I could identify with Gansey’s obsession in that way. The characters are another huge aspect of what make this book so fabulous. The aforementioned Gansey is rich, eccentric, and completely socially awkward, but he is such a fabulous character, primarily because of how much he cares about his friends. I adored all the Raven Boys and the friendship they had, and also I loved how Blue fit into their group. Blue and her family of psychics add another interesting dynamic to the book.

‘The Raven Boys’ is a bit meandering and slower paced at some moments, so I can see how it might not be for everyone. However, I was so enchanted by the characters that I loved every moment I could spend with them. Don’t get me wrong, the book isn’t all slow. There are plot-twists that have the potential to leave you shocked, and moments of higher intensity when you can’t read quickly enough to find out what’s going to happen next.

Overall I was wholly impressed with ‘The Raven Boys’, and it confirmed to me that I am a fan of Maggie Stiefvater’s writing (potentially enough so to make me go back and give ‘Shiver’ another chance). ‘The Raven Boys’ is an enchanting read, one that will stick with you long after you’ve finished the last page.

The Cover:
You should know that I'm terrified of birds. I think that spells out my reaction to this cover pretty well. ;) However, objectively speaking it's pretty awesome and unique, and I like the white background element and the swirly-ness (that's obviously a technical term) of the illustration.


Find The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater on Goodreads, Book Depository, & Amazon.


  1. Ooo! We too love THE SCORPIO RACES (but haven't read SHIVER) so we were curious how this would compare. Glad to hear it's a good read!

    1. It's definitely different in setting from Scorpio (that island really can't compare with anything!), but I think the feel of the writing was the same, in that it totally captivated me and made me feel like part of that world.

  2. Great review! I need to read The Scorpio Races, still. It look soo good! And I love the cover for this one -- of course, if you hate birds, the cover might be a little freaky. :)

    Thanks for sharing this! I'll have to try and read it sooner!

    1. Haha yes... the cover is awesome, just not necessarily appealing to me. ;)

  3. This was on Netgalley?? And I missed it. Bummer. Maggie belongs to my favourite authors and I can't wait for The Raven Boys. Glad you enjoyed it so much:)

    1. I seem to have got it at the last minute, yah! I think it was one of those that got released but wasn't actually on the front page when it was first there (if that makes sense).

      Hope you love it! =)

  4. Most definitely on my reading pile. Can't wait to read this one. Her writing is literary but still accessible to non-literary people like me. Did you see her race car that she's building with The Raven Boys cover emblazoned on the side? Very cool.

    1. Ooh yes, totally. I am not at all into literary fiction. I actually don't feel ashamed anymore -- it just bores me. But I love smart writing, where you feel engaged and like the writing is something special, without having to look up words or dig deep for symbolism. It's smart writing, but the symbols and amazingness just comes to the surface as you read it.

      And YES I did see the car concept! So so awesome!

  5. YES! We had nearly identical reactions to this one Ashley! "Intriguing" is definitely the perfect word, I just never quite new what the next page was going to hold in store for me and I loved that about it. It was definitely slow at times, but like you said, the characters were just so brilliant that I didn't mind in the least:)

  6. I'm reading this one at the moment! It's rather intriguing at the moment. I like Maggie's writing better here than Shiver and Scorptio Races. But I might have to finish her other books. Give them another chance. It's definitely slow at the moment, so I really hope it picks up soon!

  7. I seriously CANNOT wait to get my hands on this book! :D I still haven't read The Scorpio Races (I will though....sooner rather than later hopefully! :P), but I absolutely loved Maggie's writing style in Shiver, and I am so glad to hear that you loved The Raven Boys so much (and that you mentioned you loved The Scorpio Races, too...double score! ;D)...and now I definitely know that I have to get my hands on a copy soon and read it fast...and The Scorpio Races, too!

    Thanks for sharing, Ashley! :D

  8. I haven't read the Scorpio Races but I've been intrigued by this book from the moment I saw it. I'm glad that you liked it. I think I'm going to have to get my hands on this one.


Thank you so much for taking the time to comment; I appreciate each one!


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