Review | The Raven Boys (Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

Suitably enchanting stuff. 4/5 stars.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
What it’s about:  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.

My take:

Sorry that my review will be shorter than the blurb!

I read The Raven Boys in three sittings. Each time it took about a page for me to lose track of time. The evening I finished the book I remember opening it and when I next glanced at the clock over an hour had passed.

This is my way of saying this is a highly absorbing and entertaining tale. The main characters are a likeable group of older teenagers who all have distinct personalities. I found myself becoming very attached to all of them and keeping my fingers crossed they could manage to stay out of harm’s way. Meanwhile, among the supporting cast, Blue’s family of female clairvoyants is a particular treat.

All the supernatural elements are well-handled and framed within enough (sometimes gritty) reality to keep the story from becoming whimsical.

The ending is a nice balance: a significant plot line is sewn up but enough threads are left dangling for the rest of the series.

I haven’t given it 5 stars because, while this is very good, I don’t feel the need to read the next installment immediately. I’m looking forward to it very much, but can wait to get it from the library.

 Claire Huston / Art and Soul

12 thoughts on “Review | The Raven Boys (Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

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