Book Review #2: The Raven Boys

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars

I admit that I heard a lot of good things about this book before I ever picked it up. Nominated for a bunch of awards, universally good reviews, the works. And I’ll also admit that I was skeptical. Not because I doubted that all those people were right, but because I doubted that Maggie Stiefvater’s next novel could live up to the awesomeness of The Scorpio Races, which I bought in hardcover because I loved it that much.

The whole point of this review is to admit that I was completely, 100% wrong. The Raven Boys lived up to every expectation I’d had met by The Scorpio Races, and since it’s only the first in a trilogy, it’s quite possible that it could surpass her last novel.

I spent the first chapter or two being more than a little confused, while simultaneously loving the characterization and the immediate setting up of the stakes. Once I fully understood what was going on, and what everyone stood to risk, I loved the story that much more.

Like The Scorpio Races, this was a slow build kind of book. It starts off fast, and then slows the pace some so that you really start to understand the characters and their universe before everything shifts marvelously off-kilter.

While there were characters in The Raven Boys that I didn’t like at all, or at least spent time not liking, there wasn’t a single person who I wasn’t completely fascinated by. And, as an aspiring author myself, I learned so much about the way you interweave many plots so that everything first together perfectly and nothing is left out.

I started slow on this story, and blew through the last 200+ pages in about two hours. Once I hit the middle, where Blue and the Raven Boys start to really interact, I couldn’t put the story down. Even though a budding romance, or several budding romances are suggested, the friendship is what makes the story really worth reading.

The Raven Boys earns a much deserved five stars – it lives up to the hype and makes me desperate to get my hands on the next one.

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