Friday, 4 October 2013

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

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“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.
Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.
His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is 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 has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: 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.
For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

My thoughts

Going into this I had no idea what The Raven Boys was about, and I think that’s the best kind of approach to a book. You have no expectations and nothing to spoil the events for you. So when I started this book I was both surprised and excited to have found a book combining all the things I love; a story of magic, ancient legends, family, love and friendship set in modern day. I felt like getting an unexpected gift you unknowingly really, really wanted.

Maggie Stiefvater is an exceptional writer, and she kind of make magic come alive before you through her words. The Raven Boys is told in third person and it is used to get a lot of different perspectives. This usually bothers me a lot, but not in this one. Instead, I loved getting different characters' perspective and the reasons behind their actions, and I think Maggie Stiefvater wove them all together perfectly. 

The story was truly amazing. I've always been fascinated by psychics, magic and ancient legends. It has so many layers, and so many hints and clues dropped everywhere - both to current story in the book and the overall story - that I think a re-read of the book will even more to the reader. It was at times intense, kept me at the edge of the seat, but also had me both laughing and anxious. But even though I loved the story, what I really think made this book was the characters. Holy moly. Maggie Stiefvater has created a cast of different, unique and intriguing characters that you cannot help loving. They all have strengths and weakness, and they each have their own story. 

I loved all the raven boys, Gansey, Ronan, Adam and Noah, but I do think my favorite were Gansey and Ronan. Gansey because there was something special about him, he was a rich kid who has everything, but he is always looking beyond, searching and needing to find something that might not be found. He's always there for the others, but is somehow lonely himself and, I think, maybe the one least understood. 
Ronan, on the other hand, was so different from Gansey, he's rough on the edges and such a complex character, burdened with dark secrets. It all made him very interesting, and I was eager to learn even more about him. 
Blue was another favorite, and I liked her sensible eccentric personality. She was stubborn and courageous, and often spoke up her mind. I also felt like I could easily relate to her and her relationship with her family, and how she feels left out by being the only one who doesn't have any psychic abilities. 

Overall, The Raven Boys was an exceptional, amazing story. It's a book I think I will often come back to, and a book I can't stop thinking about. 

☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Cover reveal: Don't Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend. 

Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it's one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took "mean girl" to a whole new level, and it's clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She's getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she's falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash. 

But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn't just buried deep inside of Sam's memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

Release date: April 15, 2014

About the author

# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russel Loki.
Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optionend for major motion picture.
She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.

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