The Raven Boys
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
After putting it off for way too long I finally read the entire Raven Cycle series! I started it right after Labor Day and finished it last week! Maybe it’s just a case of the whole series being done and there for me but I really loved it. I had put this off in large part because I could barely finish Shiver a couple years back so I was nervous I wouldn’t enjoy this.
I try to keep it spoiler free below!
The Raven Boys does a fantastic job of setting up the story of Gansey, Ronan, Adam, Noah, Blue and the search for a dead Welsh King. If you find him and wake him you get one wish granted. All of this is happening on a magical ley line in the small town of Henrietta.
Other big problem: (well, one of them) Blue’s psychic relatives have all seen that Gansey, the groups heart and leader, will be dead within a year. Great set-up. Great job with the characters. Loved the mystical elements of the story and a great twist in this one made me immediately want to keep reading.
The Dream Thieves
This one was weird because I thought it was going to be my least favorite but wound up being my favorite of the series. Beautiful and creepy making use of a power that you don’t often read about but that I would be down for having. Although the book does a great job of showing both the magical and terrifying elements of the same power.
Blue Lily, Lily Blue
I actually think this third one was the main show for the supernatural elements in a lot of ways and that stuff was very beautifully written. But this is also the first one where I felt like some things were kind of left hanging (and didn’t really pay off in the fourth) and there’s a death in this one that was out of the blue and I didn’t really understand.
The Raven King
Read the series for the characters. They’re consistent and strong and brilliant the whole time. I love the way their relationships get stronger and intermingle and change.
But it was hard to feel like that ending wasn’t anti-climatic and that it didn’t deliver on some levels.
Recommend: Yes. Absolutely.
Maggie Stiefvater recently wrote an interesting bit on her Tumblr about how book piracy effected The Raven Cycle imparticular. I’m so naive that I didn’t realize book piracy was a thing until a couple months ago when Victoria Aveyard was actually asked by someone to help them pirate one of her books!
Whatever you may think about the arguments (and I’m against pirating) I can’t even imagine the entitlement of actually asking an artist to help you steal there work!
The amazing thing is that while most people have been supportive they’ve actually gotten blowback on the issue arguing that it doesn’t hurt anyone, that not everyone has access to books and that the people pirating something wouldn’t have bought it anyway so it’s not like they’ve lost sales!
The Stiefvater piece is interesting. It isn’t long and it also talks about how she and her brother used some of the same technology and thinking in order to lower the chance of pirating The Raven King.