The Raven Boys by: Maggie Stiefvater Review
“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve. Either you’re his true love… or you killed him.”
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, and he’s 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.
From Maggie Stiefvater..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.
For being a first-time reader of Maggie Stiefvater this was a rather promising opening for me into her other works. While the inside flap description above hints there is quite a bit of “inexplicable pulls” and what have you there really isn’t. There are hints of it sprinkled throughout the story, but ultimately this first installment is not a love story. (Keep in mind probably as the series progresses so will the love story).
This was a rather quick read, and while I didn’t connect 100% with Blue, I felt for Gansey (which I can‘t go into depth about because it‘ll spoil the book..sorry!). This book has chapters that are told from three different characters’ perspectives. Blue, Gansey, and Barrington Whelk. Barrington only has a few chapters. Rest assured that the jumping between point-of-views does not cause this to be difficult to read. If anything it enhanced the reading experience.
There is almost a dreamy quality to sections of this book heavily steeped in reality and the “going-ons” of everyday teenage life. Highly believable. Though the fun part of this is that dreamy quality is attributed to the magic that is sprinkled throughout the story. From Blues’ clairvoyant family, to the mysticism of the city of Henrietta seated in Virginia.
Blue being told at the very ripe age of 6 that “she would be the cause of her true love to die” and having lived with that so eternalized that she herself does not believe in love. So when we first meet Blue she may come off as a little ‘cold’ but we the reader have the beautiful advantage of seeing her blossom essentially with possibilities. I’m rather looking forward to the character development in the next installment.
The Raven Boys will sweep you off your feet and allow you to escape into the realm where not all is what it seems, and magic is quite real. Delve into the legends behind ley lines, and the inklings of romance tease around the edges of this beautifully crafted tale.
4 out of 5 stars