Okay so I’m rushing through this review because I promised myself I wouldn’t start The Dream Thieves until I’d written and posted this review otherwise I’d totally forget all the finer points about The Raven Boys that I flippin loved!!! But I really really really want to just read The Dream Thieves so without further ado 4 Reasons The Raven Boys Deserves 5 Stars:
1 – Not one single part of this book felt like a cliché.
Now believe me I have read a shit tone of books in my life and I have never read a book like The Raven Boys. I absolutely fucking love when this happens. An author comes up with an entirely original novel with unique characters and plot line. I bet there can’t be more than 50 YA novels including ley lines (if there’s even that many). Before starting this book I only had a vague idea of what a ley line was – I knew it was some line in the earth that had something to do with magic – and so when this book (and I’m sure the rest of the series) has a central theme around the ley lines I was pretty ecstatic. A new idea in a YA novel!! What??!!! I love reading fantasy and I loved even more that this was a new fantasy idea I’d never heard of before instead of the same stuff.
2 – Stiefvater constructed the characters in this novel from scratch.
Honestly every single one of character in this book, doesn’t matter how minor, is tangible. They honestly all feel so real that if I was to learn that Stiefvater had based these characters off people she knows I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised. They had depth and desires and struggles – personalities so complex, with layers and defences, it just all felt real.
Okay because there’s a crazy amount of characters in this book that are all like essential to the story and I don’t really feel like writing 3000 words on the different characters of this novel and how much they blow me away I’m only going to talk about Blue and Gansey, and skim over everybody else.
Blue has been told by every psychic who has ever read her future that if she is to kiss her true love he will die. Thanks to this fun little tit bit to learn at such a young age, Blue has constructed her entire personality as a defence mechanism against attracting friends and guys. The outfits she makes, usually these elaborate get ups, are used as another deterrent against any possible admiration.
She wore heavy boots found at the Goodwill (she’d attacked them with embroidery thread and a very sturdy needle) and a dress she’d made a few months earlier, constructed from several different layers of green fabric. Some of them striped. Some of them crochet. Some of them transparent.
Personally if I knew someone who was like Blue, it wouldn’t be a case of playing the stay aways I’d actually be like…
Blue’s crazy awesome, Stiefvater has constructed her to feel entirely realistic. I just want to be her best friend. I love how she is proud, and self-conscience, and caring, and loyal, and sarcastic, and just every amazing thing you’d want in a main character. Blue has dreams bigger then helping her family with their psychic careers, or being a waitress, or a dog walker, or any of the other odd jobs she does, she wants to explore the world – see what it has to offer. Yet as us average folk know, having big dreams without the cash flow to achieve them, fucking sucks. The theme of rich or poor, wanting for verse never wanting for is a HUGE theme in this book, with Blue being used to as an example of always working to scrape by – don’t worry Boo, I’m right there with you girl.
Gansey is the ring leader of The Raven Boys, he’s like the glue that keeps these three other completely different personalities together. Gansey has been on a long life mission to find Glendower, a long lost Scottish king, who Gansey believes to be asleep on the ley lines and will grant his waker a wish. Gansey, is described in the book as having this “all-American war hero look to him”, he’s been raised in an extremely wealthy family and because of this he feels like he always has to prove that he’s more than daddy’s pay check. This quote describes Gansey perfectly
Gansey had always felt as if there were two of him: the Gansey who was in control, able to handle any situation, able to talk to anyone, and then, the other, more fragile Gansey, strung out and unsure, embarrassingly earnest, driven by naïve longing.
When I first released Gansey’s have everything under control personality was just a front and he’s really a very self-conscious guy who feels like people are never going to like him I melted.
I couldn’t handle it. Gansey is amazing. Oh – and I want his apartment!
Okay now the other three Raven Boys Adam, Ronan and Noah, are essential to the novel. Adam; with his incredible soul and huge dreams, doesn’t see himself as anything more than a scholarship student, Ronan; with his tortured past and defences a kilometre high, (and little Chainsaw), and Noah; holy fucking shit balls I did not see that coming from anywhere! These three characters make the novel.
Everybody who lives at 300 Fox Way, I want as a friend. Maura, Persephone, Calla, Neeve, Oral all blew my mind.
I just… Wow! Every single one (except maybe Oral – because we didn’t see her much) is crazy. Straight up batshit crazy. And I LOVED IT. Maura – Blues mum – who believes it is “barbaric to order children about”. Persephone, who’s heads so far in the cloud that she speaks as if she’s in a dream. Calla, who is my idol! – she is such a tough bitch, ain’t no one putting baby in the corner. Neeve, mystical, mysterious Neeve. Every single character in this novel plays an essential role to the overall feel of the book and so these crazy, amazing, women made the novel incredible to read. Plus they’re psychic – who wouldn’t love that!!
3 – I do love a slow building romance.
*Next section may have some spoilers*
Okay I rather Every. Single. Time. for a romance to build slowly rather than an all at once, wam bam we’re in love romance and The Raven Boys has this. Blue and Adam have this slow cute flirtation going and even though I’m team true love (AKA team Gansey) I wanted Adam and Blue to be together still. He is so adorable towards her, and she is so shy with him. But yet nothing more than flirting and knowing they each have feelings for each other ever happens in this book. The emotion between them feels real to me though – I can actual connect with it.
Gansey is Blues true love, so she avoids even thinking about him in a romantic way at all – which is really selfish by the way! I wanted to read some Gansey – Blue romance. By the end of the book Gansey hasn’t acknowledged that he has feelings for Blue but us readers can tell! It’s in the small things, like him not wanting Blue to view him as rich and pompous, thinking up witty things to say to make her laugh, giving extra-long stares at Blue and Adam holding hands. I love when a romance develops slowly, it makes us readers feel real emotions towards the couple, get invested in their lives and relationships.
4 – Oh how I enjoy an alternating POV.
I thought this novel was just told from Blues point of view, until I reached the second chapter and BAM I’m Adam. I love this!!!! Especially when you go to the guys POV and you get to be inside their heads when there thinking about our main gal.
You get to the POV of Blue, Gansey, Adam, and Whelk.
I have a bitter-sweet feeling about being inside a bad guys head. Every time I read a book from a bad guys POV I always end up sympathizing with them. I would be the worst kidnap victim in the world it’d be like 3 hours later and I’d decide my kidnapper had a bad time growing up and just needs to be shown people care. Like honestly I’m not lying, I half hated Whelk for being as asshole, who does horrible things, and I half wanted to give him a hug. But I whole LOVED being in his head, at least then I know what he’s has planned for the people I love.
All in all
The book deserves 5 stars it really really does, for like 13 thousand reasons. I’m so late getting on this band wagon and I truly regret waiting so long to read this book. I mean the second book, The Dream Thieves, is already out (WHICH I CAN NOW GO READ YAYAYAYAY!!) and the third book, Blue Lily, Lily Blue, [I hadn’t read the title until just then – I wonder what Blue lily means????] comes out in like a week on the 21st of October. At least I’ll literally get to read Blue Lily, Lily Blue straight away after Dream Thieves and I won’t have to wait like an entire year.
I would recommend anyone who hasn’t read this book yet to do so. We can be late to the party together. You seriously won’t regret it.
What I can’t wait to find out in Dream Thieves:
- To know what the hell was meant about that last line in the book??????????? (Like what the actual fuck Ronan?)
- For Gansey and Blue start seriously falling for each other
- What’s going to happen with the ley lines now that they’re awake
- About Blues dad
- Why it’s called Dream Thieves (are they going to like dream walk or something?)
- What’s going to happen with Adam now?
- How Noahs going after everything
SO MANY QUESTIONS!!!! – Okay I’m going to go read it now.
Remember even if you’re having a shit day there’s always a book that can sweep you away.
I’m wishing you a fantastic day full of smiling and laughter and love.
Oh and when you have a second go read The Raven Boys, it’ll go on your Best Decisions I’ve Made Today list – I promise.