Tuesday 2 August 2016

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Book Title: The Raven Boys
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Genres: Urban Fantasy
My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Goodreads, Amazon UK
Goodreads Summary: 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, a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. 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.
What did I think? I recently found out my beef with some of the sci-fi and fantasy that is floating out there. I have a hard time caring for made up worlds and made up races. Apparently I'm in the minority because a lot of people seem to be able to feel for species that do not exist and mourn worlds we'll never see.

This is why I prefer urban fantasy. YA however can be very hit or miss, especially lately. That's one of the main reasons I haven't picked up the Raven Boys before. What a mistake. The book surprised me right from the very first page. I fell in love with every single character. They are all thoroughly developed and layered with a lot of depth and the author doesn't neglect the supporting characters. On the contrary, they are all memorable.

Gansey is driven, brilliant and on a quest. He's gentle and sometimes aloof, but you can tell he's meticulous and means well. Then there's Adam, a lovable character who is painted as hard working and intelligent. His overall sweetness and his integrity made me think of a puppy. Noah is always a bit in the background but we learn so much about him and he's such an important part of the group. And finally there's Ronan. Still a mystery, hurt, angry and full of regret. I'm hoping we'll find out more about him. Blue is a great protagonist, a strong female character, surrounded by a rather crazy but delightful family.

The writing is gorgeous and fits the mood of the book. The narrative is surprisingly complex for a YA book and the tale is intriguing. Reading this book was like hanging out with old friends and I'm really glad I picked it up and I can't wait to read the rest. Thankfully it's all published and I don't have to wait.

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