Title: The Raven Boys
Author: Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys)
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same.
Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life.
Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after…
After I was mesmerized by The Raven Boys, I was definitely interested in picking up the second book, and luckily for me it didn’t struggle from second book syndrome or anything like that!
The very last few lines in The Raven Boys were quite a cliffhanger, and the beginning of this book takes up after that, revealing more about Ronan Lynch and the things going on in his mind. Because it was the second book, I wasn’t as confused with this book as I was with the first – I understood the characters and the storylines more, and that definitely helped my reading of this book.
The title really sums up the plot of this book well – the Dream Thieves. It’s definitely Ronan’s story more than the first book was, but there’s still plenty of plot to spread around for Blue, Gansey, Adam, and a new character who was both terrifying and intriguing (you’ll understand what I mean if you’ve read this book). I continue to be the most interested in Blue, which means I prefer the storylines she’s involved in, but all of the different plots kept my interest.
So, I already mentioned that Blue is my favorite, but all of the other characters continue to grow on me. I was a little confused at the beginning of the first book and didn’t have the greatest sense of the boys’ characters, but at this point, I understand them all more and that means that they’ve also all grown on me. There are also some new characters, one of which I already mentioned; the other big, new character is just terrifying, though, at least to me. I won’t say much about him, but I wasn’t a fan of his character – but that was just because the character is not the nicest person you’d ever find (seriously an understatement, really).
I think the world building continues to be the thing that confuses me the most with these books, but I don’t actually think that’s a bad thing. The fact that I’m sometimes lost adds to the atmosphere of the book for me – the characters don’t always know what’s going on, and neither do I, even though I see so many points of views and different events that not all characters are privy to. It just made the books feel more moody to me in the best way possible, so I really didn’t mind when I was scratching my head and saying “wait, what’s going on again?”
The Adult Situation
The many psychics that Blue lives with continue to be awesome and need more attention. Since the other boys are at a boarding school and tend to not be close to their parents, Blue’s family is the main adult presence that we get in these books. Other parents come up, like Gansey’s parents, but they seem less like parents and more like people who Gansey is reasonable comfortable around and has known a long time. At times it seems a bit unrealistic, but the fact that some of the boys have extremely wealthy parents could be reason enough for parents who aren’t the most touchy-feely. I wouldn’t care about the boys’ parents at all, though, if I could just get some more moments with Blue’s family – because, again, they are awesome. And they’re all women, so yay for some girl power!
When I started this series, two books were already out and the third book had recently come out or was about to; as a result, I’d heard quite a bit about the books. I knew that a bunch of people shipped Gansey and Blue together, and I knew that Gansey was the spirit that Blue saw at the beginning of the first book and that this kind of meant he was going to be her true love or something (and no, that’s not a spoiler – it’s in the summary of the first book) – so, I was a bit surprised when I read the first book and the “main” romance seemed to be a budding one between Blue and Adam. After reading this book, though, I’m starting to see why people are always going on and on about Blue and Gansey. I had also heard plenty about Adam and Ronan – so I was a little surprised when I saw how subtle and one-sided that romance seemed to be. I don’t mind, though – I’m interested to see how these relationships will evolve in the third book!
I read the last fifty or so pages when I was already a tad tired and was ready to fall asleep but refused to until I finally finished this book (I haven’t read nearly enough books this December, so it was a personal victory type of thing), so that might have added to the sometime sense of confusion that I get with these books. If so, though, it didn’t diminish the drama of the ending, and I was enthralled the whole way through. I kind of regret returning Blue Lily, Lily Blue to the library so that someone who is reading quicker than I am could read and enjoy it, but I think I’d like a little time for this story to sit in my head and rest – although that cliffhanger at the end definitely has me interested in knowing what happened.
So, this book was just as much of a success as the first book! I was still sometimes confused, but I liked the way it added to the atmosphere of the book for me, so I didn’t mind too much. The characters and storylines continue to grow and mature, and I’m definitely interested in seeing where everything goes in the final half of the series.