Monday, February 11, 2013

The Raven Boys


I don't really do reviews of books per se, mainly because I am not a a professional reviewer and I don't want anyone to think I am. However, every now and again I feel compelled to share a book, especially when I think the author is doing a stunning job. The Raven Boys is such a book.

The story begins with Blue, who every year with her psychic mother goes to the same ruined church to identify those who will die in the next twelve months. Unlike her mother Blue is not a psychic, she just makes things louder for those who are. (don't you just love that expression? It's Maggie's btw and it describes perfectly what Blue does without going into a long explanation.) But this year Blue sees one of the dead, a boy named Gansey, and when she asks why she gets this for an answer: "Either you're his true love, or you killed him." C'mon, isn't that enough to pique your curiosity right there?

After that it isn't long before Blue becomes involved with the Raven Boys who are searching for an ancient king using ley lines - straight energy lines that connect major spiritual places. It is said that whoever wakes the ancient king will receive a favor. And who doesn't want one of those?

I'm not going to say any more about the story except that it unfolds with lovely precision, gorgeous words, and fascinating, complex characters. I will give you one more snippet, which occurs when Adam, one of the Raven Boys, has entered a magical place.

"The skin of his hand in front of him had become rose and tan. The air moved slowly around his body, somehow tangible, gold flaked, every dust mote a lantern."

I read some of the less complimentary reviews on Amazon out of curiosity and while I can see why those particular complaints were made I can't quite agree. After all, this is magical realism. A suspension of belief is required going in.

All I can say is I was hooked as soon as I stepped into the old churchyard with Blue on St. Mark's Eve, the minute I knew we were standing on the corpse road.











27 comments:

  1. Ley lines are pretty interesting. I've seen them featured on Ancient Aliens. Supposedly, ley lines connect some of the most mysterious and ancient ruins in Europe.

    So says the freaky-haired guy on AA, anyway.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You did a great review. If you feel inspired, you should do more. I didn't read any of the Amazon reviews, but like you, I really liked this. The ley lines and the characters were so interesting. I liked this better than The Scorpio Races.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks :) I only like to talk to talk about books I like; I'll let the professionals trash the ones I don't.

      Delete
  3. I have been wanting to read this one. I'm totally a Maggie S. groupie. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. It always helps.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I loved this book when I read it last October. It makes me want to be Maggie Stiefvater's BFF so she'll let me read the next one now, instead of making me wait until the publisher releases it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was thinking the exact same thing. Maybe she'll see my 'review' here and offer to let me beta read the next one - then I could actually get my hands on it sooner!

      Delete
  5. Sounds good - love that Blue is in such a quandry - did she or didn't she and what's Gansey got to do with the Raven Boys?!?! Yay!

    Take care
    x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, didn't I mention? Gansey is one of the Raven Boys, and he isn't dead - yet.

      Delete
  6. Yeah, I LOVED The Scorpio Races. Such a beautifully written novel. I was supposed to get The Raven Boys for Christmas, but I was sadly let down. :P

    I'm waiting for the paperback. Can't wait to read it.

    ReplyDelete
  7. This book has gotten a lot of good reviews. And I liked her others books, which is a good sign. Thanks for the review.

    ReplyDelete
  8. First time I've heard of it. Simple but effective cover.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wow, that sounds interesting. But no new books for me during the week. (I can't trust myself to get to bed at a reasonable hour.)

    ReplyDelete
  10. I don't like it when they use kids in stories like these :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is a ghost story, Dez, not kids killing kids, rather teens trying to solve a ghostly mystery and wake an ancient king who will supposedly grant a favor...what sort of favor remains to be seen.

      Delete
  11. Ooh, sounds pretty cool! I kind of want to check it out.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I absolutely loved that book, the descriptions, the way she shows character in such simple little lines. I'm in the process of reading it a second time, because I don't want to miss anything.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm tempted to do the same except it's a library book and has to go back :(

      Delete
  13. Nice review! I'm not sure it's up my alley, but I know somebody who would probably love it. So I may get it anyway!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Isn't it great when we read books and like them so much we have to share them with the world? A mighty fine review. As a rule I don't write reviews for ones I don't like, either.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I've been hearing good things about this book, and definitely want to check it out! I actually haven't read any of her books yet. Ack!

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really liked Shiver. Maybe one of these days I'll read the other two in that series.

      Delete
  16. I've heard all her books are excellent. I really need to read them. Love that last line! I just read Gone Girl and the writing was like that for me--just made me want to sit down and write. So gorgeous.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am desperate to read that book.

      Delete
  17. Sounds like a very intriguing read... I love magical realism and I am sure I will enjoy this book...

    Thanks for the review Marcy.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I loved your review, especially the part when you talked about suspension of disbelief. I think readers of genre must do that, but the author needs to make sure the blurb and first pages portray the book this way to begin with, so readers know what they're getting into. Yay for genre writers - I love them! :-D

    ReplyDelete

If you're interested in my blog I'm interested in your comments.