The fourth and final installment in the spellbinding series from the irrepressible, #1 New York Times bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater.
All her life, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love’s death.
She doesn’t believe in true love and never thought this would be a problem, but as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.
I FINALLY FINISHED THE RAVEN CYCLE AND NOW I AM EXPERIENCING UTTER DESPAIR AND I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH MY LIFE ANYMORE AND —
Okay, okay, okay. I really do promise to calm down, but I seriously cannot believe that I’ve finally finished this truly remarkable and wonderful series. It has definitely been one wild ride. The Raven Cycle is a heart-breaking, coming-of-age young adult series that has entertained me, inspired me, motivated me and ruined me. It entertained me through an amazing storyline that I have never seen anywhere before; it inspired me to write a story that touches the heart of its readers; it motivated me to create flawed, but beautiful characters; and it ruined me with a conclusion that I never saw coming.
There is no doubt in my mind that The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater has definitely become one of my all time favourite series!
↠ Plot + Storytelling Style
Something that has continuously amazed me with The Raven Cycle series is the absolute originality of the storyline, as well as the secondary storylines that seem to beautifully intertwine. Everything ultimately connects and comes together in the end, allowing the reader closure with each character. I didn’t finish this series with any regret or dissatisfaction. In fact, I am very much in love with the way that Stiefvater decided to end her wonderful series. She manages to successfully bring together all the plot points she wrote about in the first, second and third books.
I really don’t want to give away any spoilers to the overall plot and conclusion, especially since this book ends the series. But, I will say the following: Stiefvater is an incredibly talented author. This book surprised me and frustrated me. Essentially it picks off where the last book ended, with a little bit of time missing but it doesn’t confused the reader whatsoever. Stiefvater is able to update the reader where we are now, without info-dumping.
I will point out that there are moments where the plot tends to drag — mostly because Stiefvater likes to focus on characters. I think that this is because she likes to further develop them through intimate moments with other characters. It is slower paced, although more character focused. This style definitely possesses its strengths and its weakness. But I think because I was personally experiencing a little bit of a reading slump it was kind of a weakness.
The story is propelled forward by exceptionally well-written, three-dimensional characters. Though the overall plot is interesting and very intriguing — gripping the reader the instant that the book begins — it is essentially the actions undertaken by the characters that moves everything along. For somebody that enjoys character-driven stories this was definitely my favourite element.
I have said this countless of times before — and I will say it again — Blue Sargent is an incredible protagonist and definitely one of my favourite characters in the Young Adult genre. I love the real and flawed characteristics she possesses, making her a relatable protagonist as well as a role model to younger readers. Whilst sometimes insecure, Blue grows and develops throughout the story. She struggles to assess what her future holds, though remaining true to herself and confident, not changing to fit into the old that society wants her to fit into. Her relationship with Gansey is one of my favourites. The couple work tremendously well together and this book really highlights why I consider them to be one of my favourite “endgame” couples.
Gansey will always be the leader of the Raven Boys in my eyes, but this book allows for other characters to develop more as well. Every single one of them are complex and intriguing. Gansey has always intrigued me and this book is no exception. I was a little disappointed that Noah did not play a very large role, but he was still a wonderful character who continued surprising me. But this is definitely a novel that the majority of diehard fans of Ronan and Adam will appreciate. There is more of a focus on these characters. Whilst they are perhaps the most “otherworldly”, Stiefvater humanises them so beautifully in this novel.
The Raven King was a truly wonderful, gripping and exciting read — perhaps, the best novel to begin 2017. I have never felt so connected to a group of characters before or so invested in a story. I am very sad to say goodbye to this wonderful series, but truly thankful that Maggie Stiefvater wrote something like this. I left high school seven years ago, but I can still find myself relating to a lot of these characters and some of the issues that they faced. I loved this book!
FIVE STARS. FIVE STARS. FIVE STARS. FIVE STARS. FIVE STARS.