The Raven Cycle Series
by Maggie Stiefvater (Author)
Having grown up in a household of psychics, hearing predictions and witnessing the unexplainable are familiar experiences for Blue. However, when predictions link her fate to that of a boy named Gansey, at the prestigious Aglionby private school, she is drawn into his singular and dangerous quest.
Gansey is more than he appears on the surface, as are the other Aglionby students - Raven Boys - he has befriended: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little. Their differing personalities and perspectives sit uneasily within a circle of genuine friendship, and a desire to solve a sinister mystery.
I am bereft. I have just finished Maggie Stiefvater's 'The Raven Boys' and must wait - perhaps an entire year - for the next book in the series. Last year, I thoroughly enjoyed Stiefvater's, 'The Scorpio Races', a standalone novel which I considered her best at that time. But she keeps getting better and better. 'The Raven Boys' was hard to put down, progressing with the intrigue of a mystery and the inevitability of a tragedy. Stiefvater captures the emotional - and at times, quite chilling - power of myth and legend without being glib, something few YA paranormal writers can do; yet it's the poignancy of her characters that linger with the reader. The main characters are well-formed and three dimensional; they are mysteries in themselves, and only gradually do we see their personalities, individual demons and motivations unfold. There's a fragility to these young adults and their relationships with each other, a fragility at times belied by gestures of genuine loyalty and sacrifice. But on their dangerous and highly unpredictable quest, each is compelled by such deeply-rooted and conflicting goals, it's impossible to foresee the outcome. With so much at play, you'll be left - like me - keenly anticipating book two of the series.