Review: ‘The Raven Boys’ by Maggie Stiefvater

I received this book for free from publisher unsolicited in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: ‘The Raven Boys’ by Maggie StiefvaterThe Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Raven Cycle #1
Published by Scholastic Inc. on September 18th, 2012
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Love & Romance, Supernatural, Young Adult
Pages: 416
Format: Hardcover
Source: publisher unsolicited
“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.

The Book DepositoryChapters/IndigoGood Reads


I think I might be out of the norm being a Maggie Stiefvater fangirl, because I liked the book, but I didn’t exactly love it either. Don’t even get me started on The Scorpio Races which I DNF. But anyways, on to the Raven Boys. I was excited because this one felt more like my type of read. Fantasy, magic, and little bit of mystery thrown in. Yes this one was more my style. I’m glad I gave this one a try though. The plot was fairly intriguing and that kept me from marking this one as a DNF. I was close to though, about 98 pages in..then finally it got good! I enjoy Maggie’s writing style. It’s different and she adds a lot of dimension to her characters more so than other authors. Maybe it’s time to give the Wolves of Mercy Falls Trilogy another try..

This is a little long. I everything is stretched out and I felt it could have less chapters. The story could have been told in less than 409 pages. I was utterly bored and I had to stop and read it again. I just thought the pacing and the flow of the plot could have been handled a lot better. For example, in one chapter something significant happens, and then in the next chapter, the characters end up doing nothing about it and going about their daily lives. There’s a lot of characters, and at least three story lines to watch out for. Maybe that’s why I felt lost. I had to remember who was who and who was related to who, and it just felt a little overwhelming.

On to the characters..Blue’s cryptic premonition, not being able to kiss the love of her life without him dying was so dramatic. Then once her friendships with The Raven Boys emerged, she was so incredibly understanding and finally found some people she can relate with. She had that loner profile working well for her, until the boys came along that is. Gansy’s obsession with the ley lines, and Glendower was such a mystery to me. I still couldn’t fathom why he felt like he owed Glendower a favour?!?!. Adam was my favorite character. He was sweet and thoughtful towards Blue. I also felt wonderfully proud of him in the end with his father. The relationship with his father was rocky from the beginning and I couldn’t help but pity him. Some scenes made me cringe. I couldn’t even read it. Ronan on the other hand was such a lost soul and I pitied him too. The Raven Boys and their relationships with each other was so refreshing. A bromance to the very end! It was a story about friendship AND magic all rolled into one.

Pick this one up if magic, and mystery are your favourite genres. If not, I suggest borrowing it and giving it a try.





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  3. The Cover Contessa

    October 24, 2013 at 9:42 PM

    I have heard so many great things about this book. Really have to get to it!

  4. Mandy Earles (@meryvamp)

    August 20, 2013 at 8:42 PM

    I’m still on the fence with this one. I’m not sure I’d enjoy it if it comes off as overdramatic. Plus, I might lose interest if it is slow-paced. Great review. I’ll think about picking this one up or just reading it from the library 😉

  5. Jaime Lester

    October 29, 2012 at 2:32 AM

    I was lucky enough to win a copy of this one from Lili at Lili’s Reflections (an awesome blog you should definitely check out if you haven’t! (: ) I can’t wait to read it. I am sorry that you didn’t like it better than a 3 star, but 3 star is better than nothing!

  6. Camille

    October 14, 2012 at 7:46 PM

    I am not a huge fan of Maggie Steifvater, but I was still interested in reading Raven Boys. But I am glad to hear your honest review of it so that I know not to read it.

  7. Sierra @ Yearning to Read

    September 25, 2012 at 1:48 PM

    I haven’t read any of Maggie’s books, but I just recently bought this one and am excited to finally read some of her work. I’m not sure how I’ll like it, but from the jacket saying it’s about the “inevitability of death”, I have a feeling I’ll adore it. Thanks for the honest review, though. I’m going to keep your thoughts in mind!

  8. Sabina

    September 24, 2012 at 1:10 AM

    I haven’t read any of her books but the premise of this one sounded interesting. I’m not keen on slow starters though. I might wait until this one is at the library before I give it a try.
    Great review!

  9. Jenn@OwlReadIt

    September 23, 2012 at 9:52 PM

    I have yet to read one of her books, my friend however loves her books. I might hold off on this one for a bit, I have an ecopy of Shiver off of Kobo, so maybe I will give that a try first.

    Books that drag aren’t easy to get through, so good job on finishing it! I’m glad you did end up liking it a bit!

    Thanks for the review 🙂

  10. Rebecca

    September 23, 2012 at 7:31 AM

    I’m already not all that interested in reading The Raven Boys and to hear that it drags and is stretched out too much, puts me off even more. Think I’ll skip this one for now. Awesome review though! 😀

  11. Lynn K.

    September 23, 2012 at 2:22 AM

    A lot of people gave this book glowing reviews so it’s interesting to read a review with an average rating. I actually enjoyed The Scorpio Races but DNF Shiver so Maggie’s books seems to be a hit of miss for me…

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