Read that series they said. You’ll love it, they all said. I read The Raven Boys thanks to popular opinions on the blogosphere, and I didn’t expect to be this surprised, nor did I expect to fall in love with it. So obviously I had to get the second book, thinking “don’t get into this with too many expectations, some people didn’t love it”. And obviously, I want to scream about it and I have no idea how to write a coherent review about this because I read it weeks ago and I’m still fascinated about it all.
A WORLD, THOUSAND OF POSSIBILITIES
“In that moment, Blue was a little in love with all of them.
Their magic. Their quest. Their awfulness and strangeness.
Her raven boys.”
There is something incredible about this Raven Cycle series, I’ll tell you. It’s not quite fantasy, it’s not the book with heart-stopping action all the time. It’s not a contemporary focusing on character development only, leaving the plot a little behind. It’s a savage mix of the two. SAVAGE, it’s crazy. There’s something about the very atmosphere of the book, that feels like a contemporary, like it’s talking about people you could know – people you REALLY KNOW (yes I do and I love them all to bits). There’s also something about this book that makes you want to scream because it’s absolutely stunningly imaginative and it’ll make you dream about different worlds and endless possibilities and, just, WOW.
THREE DIMENSIONAL CHARACTERS. HELP, I’M IN LOVE
“While I’m gone,” Gansey said, pausing, “dream me the world. Something new for every night.”
Following The Raven Boys perfectly – but kind of leaving some questions behind, but I didn’t mind, I was too excited to care about this all to be honest -, The Dream Thieves focuses on Ronan’s character, and his crazy ability of his to take things out of his dreams. Objects. Craziness. Nightmares, even. This whole idea fascinated me, to begin with, but I was cautious, because I heard that some people couldn’t relate to Ronan, and couldn’t enjoy this story as much as the first installment. This didn’t happen for me, not at all. If anything, I loved it even more than the first book. I couldn’t quite understand Ronan, at first, but he is such a complex, mulch-layered character, it takes some getting used to. He’s definitely not one that you’ll love at first sight, but I loved how complex he was. With his feelings. With his life, overall. Everything in him was not as it seemed, his smiles and frowns always hiding something different, and this made him feel SO real, because as humans, we are crazy complex fellows. I loved him.
”What do you want, Adam?
To feel awake when my eyes are open.”
Just like in a perfect contemporary, the author gives lots of room to her characters, and I could FEEL it. Even if the story focuses on Ronan, thanks to multiple point of views, we still get to see a bit of everyone, and everyone keeps on developing and changing from the first book, in their thoughts, in their feelings, in their lives. We get to see more of Blue’s feelings towards two particular boys growing, changing, and relationships getting stronger and more and more complex AND I HAVE FEELINGS ABOUT IT ALL. I won’t say more because spoilers. If I had to say one “bad” thing about the characters, I’d say… Noah. I love Noah way too much and we barely saw him in this book. I guess he had very valid reasons to be barely invisible in this, but it made me really sad. Some of my favorite scenes in this involved Noah.
SLOW-PACED, BUT GRIPPING
“Sometimes, some rare times, a secret stays undiscovered because it is something too big for the mind to hold. It is too strange, too vast, too terrifying to contemplate. All of us have secrets in our lives. We’re keepers or kept from, players or played.”
I really thought I could keep on writing about this book for hours, but I feel like this is something you have to experience yourself, rather than just read reviews about it all. The special atmosphere of this story, the three-dimensional characters, the relationships and most of it all, the plot taking you somewhere you’re never expecting, has to be experienced. Really. It’s not for everyone, though, because just like the first book, it falls into the slower-kind-of-story, where it takes some time. We aren’t thrown into the action right away, and some people did have issues with that. I didn’t, because I enjoyed getting back into the little city, the characters’ minds and experiencing their struggles before the big action comes kicking in again. It’s one of these stories that probably takes a bit of time to grow on people, but once it does, it’s magical.
The Dream Thieves is a slow-paced book, but it managed to keep me entertained from page one, right up until the end, thanks to the incredible atmosphere the author creates. It’s addicting, and I never wanted to get out of this world, full of possibilities, of characters I felt like I knew like the back of my hand, and every single time, they managed to surprise me with the complexity of their feelings and human-ness. I am falling more and more in love with this series, and I can’t wait to see where it takes me next.
Final rating: It’s a hurricane!
Did you read The Dream Thieves? Did you enjoy it? Do you want to read it? Share your thoughts in comments!
Maggie Stiefvater, The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle #2), Published by Scholastic Press, September 17th 2013.
The second installment in the all-new series from the masterful, #1 NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater!
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…