Saturday, 24 November 2012

My Bookish Review: The Raven Boys

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Published: 18th September 2012
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Series: Raven Cycle #1
Pages: 408

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 everything will change for blue.

This is the year 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.

I'm not a huge fan of Maggie Stiefvater's previous books. I started Shiver, and then only got halfway in Linger. However, those books were about werewolves - mythical creatures I'm not keen on. On the other hand, The Raven Boys is about psychics - something I am keen on.

I like the fact that the blurb of this book doesn't give much away. I didn't even know who the main love interest was. Still not sure, actually. Despite this, it made me eager to read it. It's quite a good synopsis.

The main character is Blue Sargent, and even though the book's written in third person, I still managed to understand her. She's the daughter of a psychic, living with her mother and aunts in a not-so-rich background. Ever since she was little, she's been told by every psychic she's ever seen - including her own mother - that if she ever kisses her true love, he'll die. Blue herself doesn't possess any sixth sense, but she does heighten the powers of those who do. So every St. Mark's Eve she tags along with her mother, except this year she's been sent with her half-aunt. Whilst at the graveyard she sees the spirit of a boy - something she's never seen before. It can only mean one thing... either she's killed him, or he's her true love, *gasp*.

The boy who she sees in the graveyard turns out to be an extremely wealthy, good-looking Aglionby student. called Gansey. Yep, he's from that local private school that Blue hates because practically everyone Raven Boy there is the same as the previous: conceited, arrogant, with plenty of riches. Gansey has three close friends - Adam Perrish, Ronan Lynch and Noah. This is the part where it gets complicated, because Gansey isn't the one who asks her out, Adam is. That makes it kind of hard for him to be her true love if she's with one of his best friends, pointing to the conclusion that she's the one who kills him... but there's something going on between Gansey and Blue.

I found myself falling for Gansey, not Adam. Gansey's more confident and charming, while Adam has a secondhand Aglionby uniform and lives as poorly as Blue. I did try to like Adam, but I think/hope that Maggie wants the reader to prefer Gansey, due to the fact that he's Blue's true love. I sincerely think/hope this. Emphasis on the latter.

Then there's Ronan... He's undoubtedly the bad-boy. Always getting into fights and having a reputation in Aglionby, I enjoyed any page with his name on it. He's also undoubtedly my favourite. So I thought I'd dedicate a paragraph to let you know how awesome he is.

The Raven Boys has a continuous mystery feel to it. I can't believe I overlooked the way in which Stiefvater writes. In her previous books I just found it boring, but in this one, it was one of the main things that caused me to turn every page. I love good description. Not description that is unnecessarily long and hard to make sense of. This book's setting was painted very well, something which I think is very hard to find.

Their wasn't a lot of romance in this book. Like, not even a kiss. I know that's kind of obvious (considering the whole "If you kiss your true love, he will die." theme) but still. Although having said that, the The Raven Boys was still engaging. I get scared very easily, so I made a big mistake by reading this while everyone was asleep and I was the only one awake during the few hours before midnight. You can tell the plot's being well-thought of and there were quite a few times where I almost injured myself because of the amount of times I was shocked at the end of a chapter.

Overall, The Raven Boys is a book I recommend if you're someone who prefers a heavy plot instead of a light romance.  I did really enjoy the book, but I don't think it's something I'd re-read. Nevertheless, I'll still be waiting for the second book in the series. This book has even made me willing to read some of Maggie Stiefvater's other series.

4/5 Stars - This book provoked the thinking side of my bookish thoughts.

Teaser Quote:
"There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St Mark's Eve. Either you're his true love," Neeve said, "or you killed him."
Amazon | Goodreads | Author's website

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