Monday, October 17, 2016

REVIEW: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Cycle #1)

The Raven Boys

Title: The Raven Boys
Series: The Raven Cycle #1
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Publication Date: September 19th 2012
Publisher: Scholastic
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Magical Realism
Rating: 5 Stars
Even if Blue hadn't been told her true love would die if she kissed him, she would stay away from boys. Especially the ones from the local private school. Known as Raven Boys, they only mean trouble.
But this is the year that everything will change for Blue.
This is the year that she will be drawn into the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys. And the year Blue will discover that magic does exist.
This is the year she will fall in love.

My Review

Before I start this review, I just wanted to say that first of all, I picked up this book a little over two years ago, and at that time, the book just wasn't enough to hold my interest for some particular reason. Maybe it was because at the time, I wasn't really into young adult books that consisted of forbidden love and all of that jazz, or maybe it was because of that synopsis that really put me off. And to be honest, I'm leaning towards the latter. The synopsis needs a little work, because I feel like the book itself just overthrows everything the synopsis says and really, there is so much more to this book than just a girl who will kill her first love by kissing him. So really, if you're new to this series (like I am), but you're put off by the synopsis, just ignore it. Because it is so much better.

That said, I want to jump into this review by saying, I freaking adored this book. The Raven Boys was one of those books that is slow-burning but is filled with little nooks and crannies full of dreams and magic and light-hearted mystery. The writing was beautiful, Ms. Stiefvater did such an amazing job at creating this world and the characters in it that I just fell in love with everything. The plot of the story itself is so so unique. Many fantasy or magic stories that I've read always consist of these big plots that is needed to save the world or whatever, but The Raven Boys was so so different. The plot surrounds itself with the characters, it originates from the characters and I just feel that is what makes it so special. 

This is a book that really explores the characters in depth, and I feel like that is one of the biggest perks of this whole series. I feel like we only get to see the characters of Blue, Gansey, Adam, Ronan and Noah as the tip of the iceberg here in TRB, and I think that we would get to see a lot more of each of them in the next books. But from what I've seen of these dreamers so far is something I've already fallen in love with, so I don't really know how I'm going to fall further in love with them later on.

To elaborate, I feel like the characters of this book really represents not only fiction and the power of imagination, but they also represent reality in some odd way. I can connect with lot of what happens to these characters individually, and I think that is because Ms. Stiefvater makes them so real. I wouldn't call this book (series) fantasy at all, but I think I would call it more of a magical realism (hence why I'd put that in the genre section above).

The writing in here was so beautiful, as well. There's a lot of play on words that I really liked, and it just makes this whole world seem so much more real and exquisite. Here is one of my favourites:

"Where do you live?"
Adam's mouth was very set.
"A place made for leaving."

Overall, this book was just stunning. I don't know why it took me so long to pick it up and read it, and I don't know why I put it down in the first place. But here I am, running to jump onto the next book, The Dream Thieves.

About The Author

New York Times bestselling author of The Shiver Trilogy, The Raven Cycle, and The Scorpio Races. Artist. Driver of things with wheels. Avid reader.
All of Maggie Stiefvater's life decisions have been based around her inability to be gainfully employed. Talking to yourself, staring into space, and coming to work in your pajamas are frowned upon when you're a waitress, calligraphy instructor, or technical editor (all of which she's tried), but are highly prized traits in novelists and artists. She's made her living as one or the other since she was 22. She now lives an eccentric life in the middle of nowhere, Virginia with her charmingly straight-laced husband, two kids, two neurotic dogs, and a 1973 Camaro named Loki.

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