The Raven Boys – Book Review

5/5 stars – eloquent prose, witty dialogue, plot twists galore, holy moly The Raven Boys ticked all the boxes!!

Title: The Raven Boys

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Publisher: Scholastic

Year: 2012

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance Fantasy-???? I don’t really know tbh

Pages: 409

Synopsis: 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 The Raven Boys Goodreads

“Fate,” Blue replied, glowering at her mother, “Is a very weighty word to throw around before breakfast.”

Maggie Stiefvater, The Raven Boys

We’ve officially read my first 5-star read of 2020!!! Yes, that’s right. I’m rating a book 5/5 stars. I’d rate this book 6/5. Hell, give it a 12/5!!! 

Why oh why was I putting off this book?! It’s been on my shelf for at least two years now and I’ve been so so skeptical of it and now it’s going on my special shelf, right up there next to Harry Potter and Caraval because it was just so damn brilliant. Maggie Stiefvater, you beautiful human being, I should never have doubted you. I’m so so sorry. 

The Raven Boys is a beautiful, witty masterpiece from start to finish. Filled with elegant descriptions, vibrant characters, magic and mystery and so much more!! The book is written in third person, past tense (bless), which a few of you might know by now is my favourite style of writing. I often find it lets me delve so much deeper into the book and the world than a first-person novel does. If anyone’s wondering why this is my favourite style of writing to read, this book is the perfect example and I beg you to read it (if you haven’t already, I’m severely late to this particular fandom). 

The book is set in a quaint (fictional) town called Henrietta in Virginia, and follows the story of Blue Sargent, daughter to a psychic, living in a house full of psychic women (with no psychic powers of her own – she just makes other psychic’s powers stronger). I love the 300 Fox Way household’s dynamic. It is pure chaos in the best way possible. Each woman is so vastly different from the next and each one adds so much to the story!! Blue meets four, rich Aglionby boys (one actually isn’t rich but still), Gansey, Adam, Ronan and Noah, who she learns are searching for a long-dead Welsh King believed to be buried somewhere in or near Henrietta. 

Where do I even start with these boys?! Gansey. Richard Campbell Gansey III. Dick. 

“You are being self-pitying.”

“I’m nearly done. You don’t have much more of this to bear.”

“I like you better this way.”

“Crushed and broken,” Gansey said. “Just the way women like ‘em.”

Maggie Stiefvater, The Raven Boys

GANSEY. What a precious character, everything about him is complex and amazing and I can’t wait to continue with this series and delve deeper into his character (I feel like we’ve just brushed the surface of who Gansey is in this first book). Adam Parrish, the non-rich Aglionby boy, working three jobs to pay his way through school. I am not 100% sold on Adam as a character and I hope we get to explore his character more in coming books. Ronan Lynch is an absolute enigma. I love him. I am so intrigued by him and he brings so much humour to this novel. I can’t choose between Gansey and Ronan as to who’s my favourite. And Noah. I’m not going to say anything about him, because – well just read the book and find out for yourself.

There wasn’t really anything about this book I didn’t like. It was perfectly paced for the kind of story that it was, the characters had great arcs and I can’t wait to watch them develop even more over the next couple of books. The plot twists were just – WOW – did not see those coming. And the writing… Hands down my favourite thing about this book is the writing. Maggie Stiefvater has a magical way with words and no one can argue otherwise. I adored her Shiver trilogy and I have a feeling this series is just going to be even better. I can see why some people struggle with her writing style but I adore it (I am a sucker for sly humour and witty dialogue in the midst of beautiful, eloquent prose tbh).

I could keep raving about this book. But I won’t because that would get annoying and take my time away from reading the next one. So I’ll just leave it here and tell you you should read this book if you haven’t already or come and cry about how amazing it is with me!!!

Okay, bye, I’m gonna go and drive for two hours to my friend’s house to borrow the rest of the series and get started reading the Dream Thieves.

Links for the book and author:

Maggie Stiefvater Goodreads

The Raven Boys Goodreads

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