13th August to 17th August ~ Physical Copy ~ #1 in the Raven Cycle ~ Link to Goodreads
Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue never sees them–until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks to her.
His name is Gansey, 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 is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul whose emotions range from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher 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 doesn’t believe in true love, and never thought this would be a problem. But as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.
I have owned this book for at least a year now and I have been waiting for the hype to die down a little before picking it up. I started this book this week as part of the Read-Them-All-Thon (A pokemon themed read-a-thon) and I finally got to a place where I wasn’t going to be expecting something epic because of hype and I was just expecting it to be vaguely what the blurb promised.
I liked the plot for this book a lot. It’s a great little “adventure” story of sorts, a lot of detail was given to the research and the jist of what “Ley Lines” etc were and so I think this is very much a set up book and I’m holding out hope that the next book really captures the “adventure” spirit. There unfortunately wasn’t a lot else I liked about this book; I liked Calla as a character because she was the only one who felt like a fully formed, realistic person but she was only really a side character.
I’ll pre-face this section by saying please don’t hate me for everything I am about to put out there. I can see why people love this book but for me personally a lot was lacking. Okay so I’ll start with the writing; I was not a fan and I felt like the actual writing really let down the plot. It was extremely jolty throughout it felt like it was pulling me in one moment just to shove me away another. I was not a fan of how one chapter would build up, present you with a situation and then go straight into the next chapter which is a day or two later with nothing mentioned about said previous situation – I honestly felt like my book was missing pages and I kept having to flick back just to check. Following on from this note and adding to it I really had an issue with the ending. The penultimate chapter has lots going off and I was loving it, it built up, certain things happened and I was just like “yes finally!” and then the chapter ended somewhat abruptly and the last chapter mentioned absolutely nothing about the previous one and it left me with lots of questions – did they really all just move on what what happened no question no backlash, nothing!? That was asking me to suspend my belief just a little too much! The next biggish thing I didn’t really like was the characters. They all felt very interchangeable to me, like you could change one or two minor things about them and swap them with characters in other popular YA books. I felt they were all written to be so outlandishly “differently” they all fell flat as real people. I also felt like there were far too many characters, example why on earth was Orla written in at all, she answers the phone and mentions her nail polish – okay then. The Last thing I will mention in this section is the amount of cliches and tropes this books throws in, here’s a very short list of the ones I had most issue with: Class/money divide between friends and potential love interests ~ Teenager forbidden from seeing certain people ~ “sensible” teenage girl turning rebellious (though imho the sensible part is never actually shown just told) ~ potential love triangle ~ and many many more.
I am so conflicted! I really loved the plot and the general direction this book could go but the execution with the writing and the characters really let the plot down for me and since that’s 2 thirds of what makes a novel it’s hard for me to give this book a high rating. I will be carrying on with the series because I think the next books have brilliant potential and I’m hoping to get some answers but it didn’t have me desperate to buy the next book.