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The Raven Boys Paperback – July 30, 2013
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From School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up-Blue was born into a psychic family with the misfortune of having no psychic ability of her own. However, her presence helps others "see" more clearly, which has led to every psychic she's ever met predicting that if Blue were to kiss her true love, he would die. Not interested in boys yet and especially repulsed by the snooty lot at Aglionby Academy, she decides to simply never kiss anyone. When she has her first clairvoyant experience, it's not as thrilling as she had hoped. She sees that Gansey, a boy from Aglionby, will die within the next year. She can't get him out of her mind, a task made impossible when she meets him and his three friends. The Raven Boys, as Aglionby students are called, rope her into helping them with their mission: to locate a ley line. The line of energy could possibly connect them to the past and to the legendary "sleeping" Welsh king, Glendower, who will grant the one who awakens him a reward. Their quest puts each of them in harm's way, made more imminent when Blue finally starts to feel as if her kiss of death is going to be a real problem. First in a planned quartet, The Raven Boys is an incredibly rich and unique tale, a supernatural thriller of a different flavor. The cinematic feel paces the novel well, and the many pieces of the story unfold with grace. The complicated relationships between the Raven boys and Blue are not of the standard main character/love interest variety and makes the curious plot all the more enthralling. Fans have been salivating for Stiefvater's next release and The Raven Boys delivers.-Emily Chornomaz, Camden County Library System, NJα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
–Horn Book Review, Starred Review
é “Masterful...like nothing else out there now.”
–Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
é “A study of courage and loyalty tested…utterly compelling.”
–Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
é “A book with cross-appeal to lovers of fantasy, horse stories, romance, and action-adventure, this seems to have a shot at being a YA blockbuster.”
–Booklist, Starred Review
é “Up–On the sea-battered and wind-swept isle of Thisby, fall brings the famed and feared capaill uisce, or water horses, and with them, death . . . The author takes great liberties with the Celtic myth, but the result is marvelous.”
–School Library Journal, Starred Review
“Stiefvater not only steps out of the young adult fantasy box with “The Scorpio Races” but crushes it with pounding hooves…. If “The Scorpio Races” sounds like nothing you've ever read, that's because it is.”
–The New York Times Book Review
“Tactile world-building, an island full of compelling characters, and the budding romance between Sean and Puck all make for an unforgettable book that's quite unlike anything else out there.”
“With this beautifully executed drama, Stiefvater has established herself as one of the finest YA novelists writing today.”
“Tense, atmospheric, and utterly original.”
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Blue Sargent is the daughter of a seer and she lives in a house full of seers but Blue is not one herself. Somehow she is able to amplify the other seers powers and help them out with their readings. On the eve of St. Mark’s Day Blue, her mother, and the other seers sit and watch the ghosts that show up. These ghosts are the spirits of people who will pass away over the coming year. Blue accompanies the seers because of the fact that she makes their powers more powerful because Blue can’t see any of the ghosts.
This year there is an exception, Blue is able to see one spirit. This Spirit is named Gansey and he is a Raven boy. He goes to the Aglionby Academy down the road. This moment changes everything for Blue. Now she wants to know more about Gansey and why she was able to see him when she can’t see anything else. Then Blue is told: “There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve, Blue. Either you’re his true love…or you killed him.”
Gansey has become obsessed over the years with trying to locate an ancient mythical sleeping king. This mythical king is supposed to be able to grant Gansey one wish. The Gansey gets his friends and Blue involved in his quest and then weird things start to happen. It becomes a very odd adventure for the lot.
So much happened in “The Raven Boys.” My head is still trying to process everything. I am now looking forward to starting the next book. Stiefvater has definitely created a very interesting story that has pulled the reader in right away. I want so many answers that I am guessing I will have to wait for.
Stiefvater’s writing is quite good. She writes very beautifully. I loved the characters. I am really looking forward to seeing what happens. Stiefvater has created this intriguing story that I can’t get enough of. Now I understand why her books are so popular. I will definitely have to go read her other series too.
I was absolutely captivated by this story. Blue Sargent has grown up in a family of psychics. For as long as she can remember she has been told that if she kisses her true love, he will die. Not too long into the novel she meets the Raven Boys, a group of teenage boys who attend Aglionby Acadamy, the boarding school in Henrietta. They only problem is one of these boys is fated to be her true love and die by her kiss. Blue soon joins the boys on their quest to find an ancient king, a quest that will change all of their lives forever.
I have never seen characters as deep and complex as Steifvater’s are. She is able to create and develop all of her characters though out the novel in unforgettable ways. Each character is unique and brings something to the novel that makes readers unable to put it down. It’s easy for readers to feel like the have a personal connection with them by how much detail Steifvater gives throughout the story. She sets aside moments for each of them that allow the readers into their lives and get to learn each of their stories, while at the same time developing her novel without taking away from it.
The Raven Boys has been an amazing read and I look forward to the continuation of the series with The Dream Thieves.
__Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing,
__Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before…
__~Edgar Allan Poe
And, I have to say, that this novel, and likely this series, evoke the feeling of Poe better than nearly anything I’ve read since Poe. Dark, dreary, scattered with hope, fear, longing, and regret. At once magical and mundane, fantastical and everyday. And perhaps it’s those elements, that come together so beautifully, that made me fall in love with every aspect of this book.
Maggie Stiefvater wove together characters and world and plot with words so beautifully that I am in awe. Her turns of phrase are breathtaking and serve to add dimension and ambiance to the story. She paints the picture so vividly that I feel like I’m there, experiencing all these amazing things, with these people.
__Gansey himself sat at an old desk with his back to them, gazing out an east-facing window and tapping a pen. His fat journal lay open near him, the pages fluttering with glued-in book passages and dark with notes. Adam was struck, as he occasionally was, by Gansey’s agelessness: an old man in a young body, or a young man in an old man’s life.__
And while this book is called “Raven Boys” – and they’re important, and central to the story (and I love most of them), it’s the women of 300 Fox Way that I’m absolutely enamoured with in this book. Calla, Maura, Persephone, Neeve, and Blue. They’re all unique, independent, strong women that I want to know more about. They’re all a mystery – some even to themselves – and the mysteries reveal themselves slowly, as they ought to. I could devolve into a 20 page essay if I tried to describe my love for these ladies.
__Sometimes, Blue would creep outside for an infinitesimal break, and as she lay her head back against the brick wall of the alley behind the restaurant, she’d dream idly about careers studying tree rings. Swimming with manta rays. Scouring Costa Rica to find out more about the scale-crested pygmy tyrant.
__Really, she didn’t know if she’d truly like to find out more about the pygmy tyrant. She just liked the name, because for a five-foot-tall girl, pygmy tyrant sounded like a career.__
Gansey grew on me slowly, perfectly, and naturally. I like him a lot, despite the rich-people-problems-woe vibe that he sometimes evokes. Ronan I loved from the start, but I do have a thing for the broken, brooding ones. Noah…well, I won’t say too much, but he wormed his way into my heart. Adam. *sigh* What can I say about Adam. All of these characters are hard to shoe-box and have just one feeling about, but none more-so than Adam. He has me swinging back and forth on my feelings for him more than a ping-pong match. I understand and sympathize, and at the same time I want to shake some sense into him.
This book seems like it was written explicitly for me. Take a strong heroine, a slightly manic hero, timeless-magic woods, ageless, sleeping heroes, and bonds that are formed to complete quests unknown and somehow unavoidable…mix it all together with beautiful writing and just sign me up.
I’m almost sorry that I didn’t read this sooner. I wish I’d had years to experience this story and think about it, ruminate on the possibilities. And yet, I’m glad I’ve started now when I can binge read it from beginning to end. When I can find out what’s going on, what all the implications are, and who is affected how.
After all, Blue has to kiss her true love….and by doing so, kill him.
Most recent customer reviews
The Raven Boys had a great plot that was well written.Read more
Blue is the daughter of a seer and comes from a long line of mediums.Read more