From School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-Beginning the same summer in which The Raven Boys (Scholastic, 2012) ended, The Dream Thieves is a little less about Blue Sargent and more about Gansey. Richard Campbell Gansey III (don't call him Dick), Ronan, Adam, ghostly Noah, and Joseph Kavinsky are (or were) raven boys-students at posh Aglionby Academy in the small Virginia town of Henrietta. The writing style maintains a dark and brooding tone as Gansey continues to investigate the existence of a ley line, an invisible channel of energy, recently awakened, that may lead them to the ancient Welsh king Glendower. The complicated relationships and plot points are difficult to follow without the background from The Raven Boys. Even with the background, new characters appear: the deadly (perhaps) Gray Man, Greenmantle, and the idea of a Greywaren. Blue comes from a family of women with psychic gifts, but her gift isn't "sight" itself but a talent for magnifying the pressence of magic around her-a significant contribution where finding the ley line is concerned. Readers looking for answers won't find them in this book. Readers who want a moody chill and appreciate an atmospheric turn of phrase (keys hang from the ignition like "ripe fruit," a farm yard is populated with "deceased pick-up trucks") will want to spend more time in Henrietta. Purchase where the first book is popular, and suggest the series to fans of Holly Black's "Curse Workers" books (S & S) or to readers of grittier works such as Andrew Smith's The Marbury Lens (2010) and Passenger (2012, both Feiwel & Friends).-Maggie Knapp, Trinity Valley School, Fort Worth, TXα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
*Starred Review* In this continuation of The Raven Boys (2012), Printz Honor Book recipient Stiefvater continues the compelling story, keeping the focus once again on the Raven Boys themselves: privileged Gansey, tortured Adam, spectral Noah, and darkly dangerous Ronan. This time, though, their quest for the legendary sleeping Welsh King, Owen Glendower, takes a backseat to a spate of secrets, dreams, and nightmares that appear to be sapping the ley line—an invisible channel of energy connecting sacred places—that runs beneath their small Virginia town. Could this be the reason that the mystical forest, Cabeswater, has inexplicably disappeared? Who is the mysterious Grey Man, and why is he searching for the Greywaren, a relic that enables its owner to steal objects from dreams? How does this involve secretive Ronan? Visceral suspense builds as the characters pursue answers to these and other questions, and a palpable sense of foreboding and danger increasingly permeates the novel. Richly written and filled with figurative language (buildings are “tidy as library books”; a “murmur of guests” attend a party; a woman looks “fresh as a newscaster”), this story of secrets and dreams, of brothers, and of all-too-real magic is an absolute marvel of imagination and an irresistible invitation to wonder. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Backed by a 150,000 print run and a marketing push that includes a college-campus campaign, this title should multiply Stiefvater’s already vast fan base. Grades 9-12. --Michael Cart