Full disclosure: I love YA. If I manage to make it through this year and challenge, I’m willing to bet that the majority of my reviews will fall into that category. No shame!
The Raven Boys has been on my list of books to read for quite some time. I finally got a copy and, at first, wasn’t sure what to make of it. It jumped around between three or four characters a lot in the first few chapters, but once it finished the set up of the story and settled into the narrative it started to get good.
Blue is a 16-year old girl of the typical YA variety–pretty (but not conventionally so), snarky, self-assured. She comes from a family of women with psychic abilities but has none herself. Her gift is that she can amplify their powers and make readings more clear. There is, of course, a budding love triangle between her and two of the four titular Raven Boys, Gansey and Adam. Gansey is a rich boy who has come to this town to look for a long-dead Scottish king. Rumor has it if you find him, he’ll grant you one request. He’s also got a past with said king and is looking for some answers. Adam is a local boy from the wrong side of the tracks who has been befriended by Gansey and is helping him on the quest, but has his own reasons for wanting to be a part of things. Throw in a bad boy with a tragic past and some interesting talents of his own, and a fourth friend who’s best described as “smudgy” and you’ve got The Raven Boys.
Early in the book Blue is taking part in a yearly ritual and sees the foreshadowed death of one of the boys. She has been told from a young age that if she kisses her true love he will die, a bummer of a burner for any hormonal 16-year old girl. She has long since sworn off all boys, but especially The Raven Boys (so named because their school crest has a raven on it). Still, she ends up getting caught up in Gansey’s quest and going on a hell of an adventure with the boys that makes up the second half of the book.
Once the book got going, I found myself hooked and I finished it in about a day and a half. I’m a sucker for teenage drama, the supernatural, and rich boys with a sense of adventure. There are a few really excellent twists that happen in the last third of the book and it sets it up nicely for the sequel (which is waiting for my attention as I type.) Overall I think it was a solid four out of five and a good choice for people whose tastes fall into the realm of paranormal YA.