Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Badass Books: The Raven Boys

So I've basically been promising this review since November. Sorry it's taken so long to get up. You know how it is--NaNoWriMo, the holidays, work. I've been in Las Vegas this week at a trade show for work, so I knocked the review out on the flight over.

Summary (from Maggie Stiefvater’s website)

Blue Sargent, the daughter of the town psychic in Henrietta, Virginia, has been told for as long as she can remember that if she ever kisses her true love, he will die. But she is too practical to believe in things like true love. Her policy is to stay away from the rich boys at the prestigious Aglionby Academy. The boys there — known as Raven Boys — can only mean trouble.

(Spoilers in white—as always)

Why I read it: Last fall, the YA Book Club selected The Raven Boys as one of their novels of choice. Somehow (probably due to simply not paying attention, or maybe because at the time I rarely clicked links in blog posts), I missed that the book club existed. But then almost all of my blogging friends started posting reviews on The Raven Boys. They raved about it (get it? raved?). So I read it.

ZOMG Yes: Seriously? This entire book. The characters all feel incredibly deep, like they have wells upon wells of backstory. And, as the story progresses, you learn that it’s not just a feeling. There are some characters’ whose backstory shocked me. Twists that I didn’t see coming. Oh man. You know—the whole Noah thing.Blew my freaking mind.

Then there’s Blue. Blue is so real and beautiful. She’s smart and practical—as practical as a psychic’s daughter can be, I guess. Which is another thing I loved about this story. The whole psychic element just felt natural. It was a part of Blue’s life. It was a part of the story. It wasn’t forced. And that makes for good story telling.

Then there’s the raven boys themselves. I loved these boys. Their relationships had all sorts of depth to them as well. Everything about these boys drew me in. From their relationships with each other to the way they pursue Gansey’s quest to how the welcome Blue in, no questions asked. I loved it.

And then there’s the love triangle, which doesn’t exist yet, but we all know it’s coming. I still don’t know which side I land on, and I think that’s a testament to how wonderful this story is. You know, unless Blue ends up going psychotic and just kills Gansey.

And of course, perhaps the biggest ZOMG yes other than the whole Noah thing that, like I said, I didn’t see coming at all (I typically pride myself on foresight), was the end. With Chainsaw. And his origin.I mean, seriously? I didn't even think to think about that. Well played, Maggie Stiefvater. Well played.

Kthxbai: If you have any interest in fantasy at all, you really need to read this book.  Even if fantasy isn’t your thing, you should still read this book because the contemporary aspects of it are phenomenal.

This may have been my favorite book of 2012. It’s that badass. Five chiweenies to Maggie Stiefvater.

Also, just a quick plug. If you haven't read in Incarnate yet--go do that. Asunder comes out on January 29!


  1. THE RAVEN BOYS was one of my favourite books of 2012, it was just that good! Normally large casts of characters are a bit much for me, but this cast was written so spectacularly that I just loved all of them. Can't wait for Book 2! :)

    1. I'm so with you. The characters were so rich. Book two can't come soon enough!

  2. Yes! The end! Totally freaked me out, but in the best possible way. Love that. And now I REALLY can't wait to read the next book. Great review as always, Liz. :)

    1. I know! And I didn't see it coming at all. Not in the slightest. Thanks, Katy :)

  3. This book was one of my favorite 2012 reads too. So much so that I want to become Maggie Stiefvater's bestest friend so I can read the next book now.

  4. Oh man, reading this review is making want the next book in my hands right now! Have you seen Maggie Stiefvater's race car that's decaled to look the cover of THE RAVEN BOYS? I think she just might be the coolest person alive. Thanks for sharing your review and reminding me of this awesome book!