Tuesday, 1 October 2013

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

“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.
One fact: This is a galaxy better than the Shiver trilogy. 

Another fact: I actually loved it.

So where should I start? Oh, right.

This is weird but this kind of reminds me of Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone. I don't know why but from the complex writing to intriguing characters? Well, yeah.

Blue is like Karou, but instead of Chimaeras for a family, she's got psychics. The secondary characters are amazing too, with the perfect blend of human and paranormal somehow. Stiefvater's style of writing also kind of echos Taylor's too. Or maybe that's just me since it's both quite complex to digest and understand. Or maybe that's just me again.

Since it's written in a complex style, I had a little tough time understanding it. The... uncommon words doesn't help though. Quiddity? I'm sorry, please speak English.

If you're like me and have this weird habit of copying down new words, you'll have, like, twenty new words miraculously blotted on the paper. I tested my parents those words and their reaction was to stare at me incredulously. Malodorously? They wonder where I got them. I called my brother malodorous.

Now the captivating cast of characters in the story includes Adam, Gansey, Noah, Ronan and of course, Blue. They were engaging individuals and I loved them all. Adam was this scholar and we get to meet his not-so amazing life. Readers may think there is some kind of romantic tension between them but not enough to make you swoon or something. When you read the blurb, you might think that Gansey, instead, should be the love interest. But lemme tell ya. There is no luv-luv here let alone a kiss. He can be quite exasperating at time because he's such a know-it-all or in Blue's words, condescending. Ronan was this guy who seems like he's got emotional problems, anger ones to be exact. He's all snark and superiority but once you get to know him, he's actually a pretty nice person. He took care of the poor broken raven! And Noah... I can't tell you much about him. 
There were no flipping-hair bitches which were like essentials in every book, thank goodness. Just take that knife and kill me if I ever see those girls again. 

This book is highly atmospheric, owing to the brilliant writing. I love the haunted feel and the setting. She's got her slightly dry humor to keep me amused. Dick Gansey. *sniggers* Sorry to all Dicks in the world. I don't mean any offense.

Although I wouldn't say this book had a shit lot of twists and turns, it had just enough to have me in suspense and the edge of my seat. 

I wouldn't give it a whole 5 stars although it could probably get them. I'm pretty bad when it comes to identifying what I didn't like unless it is so horrifically piss-worthy crap. This definitely ain't one.

The book was left with a slight cliffy so I wasn't very happy...

Overall, I loved it, like love love it because it's so crazily wonderful. But will I read it again? Probably not because although the writing's beautiful, it's complex and I have no discipline to digest as such.

4.5/5 Stars

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