Royally Pleased With The Raven King

*Warning! There be spoilers afoot!*

raven-kingWell Halloween must be approaching cos I feel like a bit of a horror show. I swear my head feels like it’s been microwaved and I’m a phlegm monster! (now if that image is not scary I don’t know what is) So if I sound a bit lacklustre or addled in this post, don’t blame the book– as the title suggests I was pretty darn happy with how it ended!

Now I was incredible impatient for this one- so naturally I read this back to back with Blue Lily, Lily Blue! Because of that it definitely felt like one long book. In many ways, that was a good thing, as it allowed me to settle the mystery of where this story was going once and for all! And *spoiler alert*– it had a happy ending!!! My months of stressing over what would become of Gansey and the whole crew were finally put to rest! I definitely felt a gasp of relief for it to just be finished.

But on the flipside of that, I did feel like the story dragged a little. Some of the story and, dare I say it, felt a bit like filler. And the writing, which has always been a little longwinded, was a little sluggish. At the same time, however, it felt like Stiefvater had saved up a lot of the plot for the finale. The book simultaneously managed to make me feel impatient for it to end and like a huge amount of the plot was crammed into the last book.

For all my whinging- I was really pleased with how it ended. And how could I not be? It gave me everything I ultimately wanted. MOST IMPORTANTLY it gave me the Ronan and Adam moment I had been waiting for!! (eek!!!) Let’s just all bask in how wonderful that is for a moment!

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Okay, now we are done basking (for the time being) let’s talk about what else I enjoyed about this book. Namely that this was Gansey’s story. I have adored his character from the beginning and have truly felt invested in his quest for the Raven King. I was delighted to witness the culmination of his work (regardless how satisfied he was with that) and the discovery of his own inner kingliness.

It was also great to see their feelings take centre stage for this one- it really felt like the perfect ending for what is effectively a coming of age story. And there was also Stiefvater’s usual ingeniousness in the *big reveal* that Cabeswater was all a dream! Even the villains were taken to a whole other level. While Piper was already scarily crazy, I have to say she was even freakier attached to a demon.

But one there was one last thing in the book that I didn’t like- and that was the cut to the end. Aka one minute we’re trying to figure out if Gansey’s gonna come back, then Blue says “Wake up” and… the next chapter starts with a scene between Adam and his father. Way to leave us hanging! Because let’s be honest no one would like it if-

Rating 4/5 bananas

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So what did you think of the finale to the Raven Cycle? Satisfied? Dissatisfied? Let me know in the comments section!

And big shout out goes to the incredible Jill @rantsandravesaboutbooks – I won amazon vouchers from her a while ago and this book was part of what I bought with it 🙂

Coincidentally, I Read Blue Lily, Lily Blue

blue-lily-lily-blueHiya! So this will be a relatively short post cos I’ve been a bit under the weather the last couple of days. BUT since I’ve been meaning to post this review for a while, I figured I could drag myself out of bed for five minutes… (Okay- let’s be honest- this blogging thing is a dangerous addiction!)

Now I don’t suppose it was such a coincidence that I enjoyed this, all things considered. I mean, it’s no secret that I’m into this slightly creepy paranormal series. And as the third book in the series, the plot has been building quite nicely. Yet, unfortunately, given how much I loved the last one (feel free to read my gushy review here), I have to admit that I wasn’t quite as blown away as with the last one.

There were some flaws that (like many books in the middle of the series) it did at times feel a little bit like filler. And, while Piper made a good villain, Greenmantle was just not especially scary.

That said, I really liked how this one develops Blue’s powers. And I adored watching Adam and Ronan team up. And like the rest of the series it had a good ominous feel and the plot twists and turns were really clever!

So while it wasn’t as good as the last one, I reckon it deserves a solid:

4/5 bananas

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So I have to end with a question to everyone that’s read this: was “coincidence” really a thing in this series? Because it totally flew over my head, but my sister insists they were always saying it. So can you settle this dispute? Let me know in the comments who is right!!

Dream Thieves Stole My Heart…

dream thieves.jpgAnd by that I mean Ronan did. Because I am nothing if not predictable- and I will always, always fall for this kind of character. (Trying not to spoil anything, but failing, so minor spoiler warning– I have a thing for the tragic, gay characters- don’t know what it is, but they make my heart melt).

But aside from how much I adored Ronan, there were plenty of other things to admire here. The concept was seriously cool. I mean, it’s about people that steal things from dreams for crying out loud! I mentioned this to a friend of mine who doesn’t read YA and even they had to admit it sounded awesome. And that’s because it is. I rarely praise anything for being original- but I have to give Stiefvater kudos here- anyone that can come up with something new about dreamlore (yes, that’s a random thing I’m a fan of) has my vote. This concept created an edgy vibe that worked so well alongside discovering Ronan’s character.

But there were many other major pluses to this book- and I felt it was a definite improvement on the first one! I definitely preferred the antagonists- particularly the ominously named Grey Man- in this one. Unlike the first book, I got into this one straight away and flew through it. I also felt like I connected more with other characters and want to get to know them more. The twists and turns of the plot were ultimately so satisfying that I was left sated- and yet with a healthy appetite for more!

Rating: 4½/5 bananas

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Right-y ho! Hope you all enjoyed that! Have you read this book? Did you enjoy it? Let me know in the comments!

Raven Boys, Hyperactive Bunnies and Psychics That Are A Little Too Predictable

Okay, so I’ve been busy, I’ve not been well and this is the longest I’ve been without blogging in ages! So, how are you all? What have you all been upto?? Tell me everything!! (Okay, now I’m starting to sound like a hyperactive bunny)

raven boysAlrighhht… Now I’ve got that out of my system, on with the review!

First off, I really enjoyed this book. It’s a bit of a slow burner, which is not necessarily something I usually like, but in this case it worked. Mostly, this is because it’s unusually well-written for a YA (or any book for that matter). It’s got a lovely, delicate, eerie flavour to the writing that makes it really compelling. The characters in particular really shone and had a brilliant edge to them. I especially liked the well-rounded nature of the villains- and how other characters have been set up to take on the mantle of villainy later on the series.

The one downside to this book is that the psychics are a little too good at what they do, which makes the plot a little too predictable at times. And since the characters are well drawn, I really don’t see any room for twists and turns in that area either. Then there’s the foreshadowing for the books later in the series- which makes me wonder whether it’s going to continue this way for the rest of the series and if that will eventually bore me. Of course, this is super finickity of me, given that I’m basically criticising Stiefvater for being too good at what she does.

Undoubtedly this is a well-written, entertaining book and that’s a clear sign that this series is going to be great- and I don’t need a crystal ball to tell you that I’ll definitely be back for more! The only issue is, it just didn’t have the oomph factor for anything more than…

Rating: 4 bananas

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Okay, so that’s that. Anyone else read this book? What did you think about it? Let me know in the comments below!