I love when I start reading an author with their very first published book and I can watch them grow as a writer. I'm able to feel a connection with the author that I wouldn't normally get when picking up a 3rd novel or a 6th. With Maggie Stiefvater, I started reading her at the very beginning -- Lament, Ballad, and her Wolves of Mercy Falls series and then moved onto The Scorpio Races. Now, with The Raven Boys, I can really see how she is progressing with her characters, her plotting, and how she's added more meat into each book. I love it! I've also met Maggie at the store and she is so, so nice.
So the story starts with Blue, the daughter of a psychic and a fantastic character She almost reminded me a bit of Karou from Daughter of Smoke and Bone. She's fiesty, independent, stubborn, yet has a soft heart. She doesn't want to fulfill the fate that her mother has always told her she will someday meet. She doesn't want to kill the boy the boy she falls in love with, yet part of her knows it's inevitable.
Gansey is a Raven Boy. He attends Aglionby Academy, is rich, privileged, and often insults people without even meaning to. He thinks money can take care of any problem and can post certainly buy happiness. He's totally obsessed with his search for a ley line, roping his loyal friends into helping him, no matter what the cost.
The richness in this story is in the descriptions and the quiet moments inside each character's head. I think Adam was my favorite, as his background really came into play and I found myself looking forward to the parts of the plot that would focus on him. I really hope he plays a bigger role in the next two books.
My only minor issue with the book was the length. I felt some parts could have been left out, not compromising the story, and we wouldn't have had such a long book. I certainly don't mind 400 page books, but there were several scenes, particularly with Gansey that I felt could have been shortened a bit.
Definitely looking forward to book 2!
The Raven Boys