Review: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

17675462The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Published by Scholastic Press on September 18th 2012

Pages: 416

Genre(s): YA Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Source: Purchased

Rating: 3.5 stars

“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before. description

GUYS, I finally did it. I READ A MAGGIE STIEFVATER BOOK. Aren’t you proud of me? 😉

And I gave it 3.5 stars.

Not that that’s a bad rating or anything; it’s actually a really good rating for me. Everything was on point: the amazing writing style, the complex characters, the creative plot twists. My expectations were SO HIGH for this book, but unfortunately, my overall reaction didn’t live up to it.

The Characters: I loved the characters soooo much. They were all so complex and unique and flawed, and their thoughts and actions felt really believable and realistic to me. I especially loved and related to Blue, the main character, with all her personality quirks and emotions she felt throughout the story. I also really liked how Stiefvater gave each character a backstory, and described them well enough that I was able to picture them in my mind. The way she presented the characters felt like I could relate to all of them in one way or another, and that is a truly amazing concept.

The Plot: This sounded EXACTLY like the kind of book I would rate 5 stars. Everything in the synopsis sounded incredibly interesting! I mean, come on. Psychics, dead people, forbidden romance? Count me in!

It wasn’t that there was anything specifically wrong with the plot – it just felt really slow to me. I do have a pretty short attention span when it comes to books (or anything, really XD), and I just didn’t really get into this novel as much as I wanted to. Which is always really disappointing to me, because in my opinion, the best books are always the ones that make you really feel things, whether it’s hurt, joy, anger, or grief. And this book just didn’t deliver these feelings like I expected or wanted it to.

I was also really looking forward to the “forbidden romance” part of this book, which never really ended up happening. I guess there’s always the next book in the series, though….and the next…..and the next…..and, well, you get the idea. 😉

There were definitely positives, though – like the incredibly creative world-building. There were dozens of times while reading this that I stopped and wondered, How do people even come up with these things? I applaud Stiefvater for her creativity and originality when it came to the plot.

The Writing Style: I was seriously blown away when it came to the writing style in this book! I had heard so many amazing things about her writing, but I didn’t really understand it until now. Her descriptions were so vivid and imaginative, and I could picture everything in the book really clearly, which is pretty rare for me.


“My words are unerring tools of destruction, and I’ve come unequipped with the ability to disarm them.”


“She wasn’t interested in telling other people’s futures. She was interested in going out and finding her own.”


“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”


“The way Gansey saw it was this: if you had a special knack for finding things, it meant you owed the world to look.”

Final Thought: Overall, I would definitely recommend this book, though I was a bit disappointed with the final product. I loved the writing style, the characters, and originality, but I wasn’t blown away by this book the way I wanted to be. Based on the review above, I would rate this book a solid 3.5 stars.

What were your thoughts on The Raven Boys? Was I really the only one who was left slightly disappointed? Does the series get better or worse as it goes on? Oh, and tell me: When does the romance happen? Let me know in the comments, and happy reading! 🙂


10 thoughts on “Review: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

    • This ALWAYS happens to me – I have such high expectations for a book, and even though I enjoy it, it just doesn’t live up to them, so I end up being a bit disappointed. I would still definitely recommend it, but you might not want to have super high expectations, even if I’m one of the few people who didn’t love, love, LOVE this book. Thanks! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I can see why it might have disappointed you, especially if you were waiting for the romance. I loved it, but I read it when it first came out and I knew nothing going in. (I will read anything she writes because I think she’s a genius! The last sentence of The Raven Boys is one of my favorite last sentences ever!) There are bits and pieces of romance throughout the series, but never is it a romance. It’s more about their friendship and the quest. I hope you keep reading the series, though. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m definitely going to keep reading the series – I just NEED to find out what happens! I love going into books blind, because that’s usually when I get better results, but sometimes my curiosity gets the best of me. I’m completely fine with books that don’t have romance, but I think it did affect my overall opinion of the book because I was waiting for it to happen throughout the whole book when it never really happened. And YES, the last sentence of The Raven Boys is seriously amazing. 🙂 Thanks for commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I try not to have big expectations for a book because 90% of the time they don’t live up to them. They book is on my TBR pile because the summary/plot is awesome! Though I am a little cautious after your review because people say this is a 5/5 stars book and everything. Good review nonetheless 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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  4. I’m so glad that I’m not the only who hadn’t read this yet! Okay, maybe I am now, since you read it, haha. I always try to avoid really hyped up books because I’m always disappointed in them for some reason…but it was nice to read the review of someone else who hasn’t read any of this series until now. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy it more!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hehe, it’s been sitting on my bookshelf for FOREVER and I just now decided to give it a try! I often stay away from really hyped books too, not because I’m afraid they’ll disappoint me, but because I have a rather peculiar taste in reading, and a lot of really popular books don’t interest me! I’m also not usually a huge fan of fantasy, so that definitely contributes to it. Thanks for commenting! 🙂


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