Thursday, February 25, 2016

XBR4OF #9: Raven Cycle 1

Xyra's Book Reviews for Older Followers

The Raven Boys (Raven Cycle #1)

by Maggie Stiefvater

My first encounter with Maggie Stiefvater's writing was with the Wolves of Mercy Falls series which includes Shiver, Linger, and Forever. To date I have only read Shiver. Her style is expressive and detailed. 

I had heard really good things about The Raven Boys and when it popped up as a free eBook I jumped and am glad I did. The main characters are between 16 and 18 years of age with one very unique member in the group. 

If the book were a movie, I think it would be rated PG-13 for language and violence. I wouldn't have a problem with someone age 13 reading this maybe even 12, but suggest a parent read it first. Melody and Kaya would definitely be okay with this one, maybe even Kirsten. The other girls are still a bit young. ;-)

Maggie is quite an artist too! Her illustrations of the group completely douse my inner mind's depiction (see below).  

The Review

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
If you have interest in ley lines and mystic power, you may just enjoy this story.

This is book one of four and I am looking forward to reading more. Right now, I'll focus here in my own somewhat cryptic way of reviewing what I've read without giving spoilers.

Blue is our main character and she is not a Raven Boy. In fact, most of her life she has avoided Raven Boys, but this group of 4 is different. Blue's family is filled with psychic sight; she's a little different. She doesn't have "the sight" but she has other great qualities. On top of that she is friendly, compassionate, understanding, inquisitive, respectful, unique, and sensible. I love her sensibility like Elinor Dashwood.

Gansey, Adam, Ronan, and Noah - four distinct personalities. You're not sure how they can be friends like they are. While reading I kept picturing them as the guys from Entourage, but that's my own personal association - fun, but Noah is 1,000 times more interesting than Turtle. The threads that hold this group are thin yet strong like spider webbing. They can also be unraveled.

As the group embarks on the quest we learn more about each character even the side characters and minor characters get a bit more definition to them. This book opens the story and lays the groundwork to explore additional facets of the quest and Blue's desire to not exactly find her true love. The pages are filled with intrigue, adventure, mystery, power, death, destruction, exploration, decisions, and secrets.

Not exactly spoiler alert. Some may consider it odd for these teens (boys) to live in a warehouse and be dismayed with absentee parents. However, the boys attend a private school. Gansey is so wealthy he owns the warehouse and his parents indulge his quest whim. Ronan's father is dead and he tries to stay out from under his overbearing older brother's thumb. Adam does live at home with his parents, but it is not a good situation. Noah...Noah is very special. Blue lives with her mother and aunts. They are very involved and supportive, but also free spirits and have their ways. Plus they step up to help and show love.

This one has been waiting patiently on my nook for a while. I'm glad I finally got to it. I really liked it a lot. Has kind of Twilight Zone, X Files, Twin Peaks, Practical Magic feel to it. I like the character development throughout and how the story progresses in a pointed direction with very few tangents.

Happy Reading!


  1. Oooh this sounds really good! Ronan - I love that name.

    Ellie | On the Other Side of Reality

    1. Ronan is an interesting character. Filled with drama.