The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

17675462From goodreads: “There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

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 Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before.


This story pulled me out of my very deep book funk.  I was worried that I would never find a book that I would enjoy ever again but fear not, Maggie Stiefvater saved the day.  That’s a bit dramatic, I know.

“My words are unerring tools of destruction, and I’ve come unequipped with the ability to disarm them.”

The writing is clever and utterly fabulous but what I loved most is that it’s told in a third person narrative.  It’s almost as if I can hear the author in head, in a non-creepy way of course.

“She wasn’t interested in telling other people’s futures. She was interested in going out and finding her own.”

Blue is a wonderful and feisty heroine, she comes from a long line of clairvoyants and  when she meets the Aglionby boys, aka The Raven Boys, her life will change drastically. The supporting characters are equally as complex and wonderful as Blue and Gansey.

“Aglionby Academy was the number one reason Blue had developed her two rules: One, stay away from boys because they were trouble. And two, stay away from Aglionby boys, because they were bastards.”

There are several plots going on at the same time and can be a bit confusing.  So if you are a skimmer, this is not the book for you.  Consider yourself warned.  I think one of the many things I loved about this particular story was the intense mystery and that element kept me completely curious the entire time which was greatly appreciated.

“The journal and Gansey were clearly long acquainted, and he wanted her to know. This is me. The real me.”

If you think this will be an intense YA romance, you will be sorely disappointed and the blurb on goodreads is somewhat misleading.  While it lacked in romance, the story made up for it with compelling characters and a highly imaginative plot. Two things I absolutely loved: 1. the focus of the ley line was pure genius and 2. Blue’s relationship with The Raven Boys felt like being in a dysfunctional family.  I couldn’t get enough!

“Watch for the devil. When there’s a god, there’s always a legion of devils.”

I have a soft spot for stories in the paranormal genre and this by far was thoroughly enjoyable! ;)

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  1. says

    I’ve been trying very, very hard to put off reading these books until the entire series is complete. I have a bad habit of wanting to reread previous installments EVERY TIME a new one comes out, and I just don’t have time for that anymore. There are a handful of series that there’s no avoiding it, but if I can, I really try to. Honestly, I don’t think I’m going to make it, LOL. I LOVE Maggie Stiefvater, and you are driving the point home that this is classic Stiefvater, and I am missing out . . .

    • Cristina says

      I know what you mean COMPLETELY and after I was done with the book I went to add the rest to my TBR. BUT two have yet to be released. UGH…the wait is like torture. As much as it will kill me I am holding off until The Raven Boys is complete. Who am I kidding…I won’t be able to make it! LOL ;)

  2. says

    I have book 1 of her other series, Shiver but have not read it yet. I’ve heard good things about this author though! The fact that this author was able to pull you out of your book funk says a lot as I know how much being in that funk sucks! I do enjoy paranormal as well and I think I need to up Shiver on my TBR :) Great review, Christina!

    PS: I added you to our blogroll :)

    • Cristina says

      Book funks are awful. It’s like recovering from an addiciton…LOL The Raven Boys is a slow-building story but it will definitely keep you entertained and if I’m not mistaken, I’ve heard that Shiver is better than The Raven Boys!!! So it could very well rock your book world! ;)

    • Cristina says

      It’s really good, the writing is solid and the mystery is fantastic. And Blue the heroine was fabulous!! This will help anyone who is in a book slump! ;)

  3. says

    I didn’t like her Scorpion Races so I was extremely uncertain whether or not I would try this book. But even though I found it too slow for my liking, I did like her prose a lot as she has this tendency of making third person narrative feel more… personal. I’m happy to see The Raven Boys felt the same to you and even resurrected you from those blasted book funks! XD Are you going to read the next book soon?

    Faye at The Social Potato

    • Cristina says

      I agree, this book definitely had slow moments but I think that was her intention to make it slow-burning. But so many things made up for those moments. ;) And yes, I’m definitely reading the next book but I might wait until the others are released. It’s wonderful to be done with the book funk for now! ;)

  4. says

    Maggie is my absolute favorite author. I still haven’t read this series – I hate to wait for sequels so I decided to wait for at least three books to be published. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    • Cristina says

      I’m the same way, I usually prefer to wait for the series to be complete. At this point, I’m holding off to read the rest and I can’t wait! ;)

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