The Raven Boys: Book 1 of The Raven Cycle

Paperback | August 1, 2013

byMaggie Stiefvater

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An all-new series from the masterful, #1 New York Times bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater!

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.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we've never been before.

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From the Publisher

An all-new series from the masterful, #1 New York Times bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater! 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...

MAGGIE STIEFVATER is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races. She is also the author of Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception and Ballad: A Gathering of Faerie. She lives in Virginia with her Family. You can visit her online at and on Twitter @mstiefvater.

other books by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven King: Book 4 of The Raven Cycle
The Raven King: Book 4 of The Raven Cycle

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The Dream Thieves: Book 2 of The Raven Cycle
The Dream Thieves: Book 2 of The Raven Cycle

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:416 pages, 8.03 × 5.27 × 0.83 inPublished:August 1, 2013Publisher:SCHOLASTIC INCLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0545424933

ISBN - 13:9780545424936

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Customer Reviews of The Raven Boys: Book 1 of The Raven Cycle


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good Stuff My Woman Wowy, was this something special or what? No, that's exactly what it was, special. This book has it all, from extremely innocent characters, who are taking there first dip into what growing up is, to supernatural elements, that you're just as much confused about as the characters themselves, and a beautiful depiction of growing families and friendships. It has it all and more, it has been a while, let me tell you, since I have felt for some characters, and I feel for these characters, and there is nothing more I want other than these guys succeeding. 10/10, best ever.
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from This was cool I liked it, can't wait to read the second book
Date published: 2016-12-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favourite Series Ever This is favourite series of all time. I can't even write a review about it, I would just end up copying the entire novel down verbatim and saying, "This is my favourite part. This part and that quote and these characters and all of it and everything forever.
Date published: 2016-11-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved it! one of my favourite books ive read in 2016! love the characters so much
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVE This was lovely. I loved the style, I loved the characters, I loved everything about it.
Date published: 2016-11-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Good Read, Through And Through Read this two years ago originally, but came back to it this year so I could finish the series. Happy to say it was just as incredible the second time around. Maggie Stiefvater is by far my favourite author. She has a way of building characters and the world around them that's naturally and effortless and keeps the reader engaged the entire way through. It never drags and is always full of sharp wit that I really appreciated here. Ronan was definitely my favourite, with Adam coming in as a close second. I absolutely loved how each character was explored and introduced, and I can't wait to read the rest of the series. Blue is not my favourite protagonist, but not by any fault of the author. She was wonderfully developed and wonderfully original, I just personally am not drawn to her character.
Date published: 2016-11-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I can not recommend this series enough! Absolutely fabulous!!! The entire series is perfect from start to finish! I implore everyone to give this book and series a try.
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved this!! Hard to get into at first (took about 100 pages) but once you get into it, it's amazing!
Date published: 2016-11-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It's great! I found it hard to get into at first but then once I pushed past the first few parts I couldn't put the book down! I love all the characters - especially Ronan!
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Read! This book has been cropping up all over my Instagram feed lately and I must admit that, that was why I went and picked it up. I knew very little about it going in and I was not disappointed. The world that Maggie Stiefvater has created is a wonderfully believable one. Magic blends into the word easily and her characters feel real. There is nothing worse than reading a book and not believing in the characters. I don’t mean that in the sense of “Oh I believed so and so would triumph over evil”, rather I mean it in the sense that they do not feel alive – perhaps they are too one dimensional or their actions just don’t match with what you “know” about them. Maggie Stiefvater’s characters are real, flaws and all. She manages to take them to places of real darkness. I stayed up way too late reading because I absolutely needed to know what happened next. (There may also have been a few yawn filled mornings where I did some reading over breakfast and coffee). The story revolves around Blue Sargent a girl who is not clairvoyant but lives in a house full of women who are. She sees the spirit of someone who is soon to be dead walking the corpse road. Blue is told that there are only two possible reasons that a non-seer person would see a spirit on St. Marks eve, either you are their true love or you killed them. She has also been told that she will cause the death of her true love (pretty heavy knowledge for a young girl to have). This sucked me in right away and I absolutely wanted to know more. As the story progresses Blue teams up with some of the Raven Boys (Boys who attend Aglionby, the local private school) for a quest that they started. Gansey, Adam, Ronan, Noah and Blue make an unlikely group but they work so well. Each of these characters have their own back story and reason for wanting to find the “something” that is hidden. This book contains a murder, a gun or two, a haunting and the best last sentence ever. I honestly finished the book and in my head (because I’m not a total lunatic) yelled “NOOOO, wait – there has to be more!!” I frantically consulted Google and “OH HAPPY DAY!!! – there are 3 more books!” Trust me – this book is amazing and you should definitely read it!
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing series! This was an absolutely amazing book to introduce the raven cycle series, it is truly well written and filled with different aspects of both the supernatural world (spiritual) and human world. The characters are diverse and complex, I loved each and every one of them. I could not put this book down, it constantly left me on the edge of my seat, the whole series is so amazing! I love all of Maggie Stiefvater's books and I loved this book!
Date published: 2016-11-03
Rated 2 out of 5 by from underwhelming The biggest issue i had with this series is the writing style. Everything is overcomplicated and what the author never seems to say things clearly. I found myself re-reading sentences over and over again just trying to figure out what she was trying to say. Also, some of the characters make uncomfortable comments (there were some unnecessary ethnic comments). The main character can be kind of annoying but overall the characters are interesting. The plot of the series gets messier and messier with each book.
Date published: 2016-09-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Meh I had heard so many good things about this book. But I just could not get into it. It was okay. I dont plan on reading the others. Although the only true thing i've read is that the first book is boring so- I might give it a chance.
Date published: 2016-01-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Atmospheric and unusual This is the first Maggie Stiefvater book I’ve read (I know, I’m really late). But she’ll definitely be an author for me to watch now. This was a really interesting read, the main reason being that Stiefvater masterfully weaves mythology and folklore into the story. I love that she delves into legends that aren’t mentioned as commonly. So many people have written about Greek, Roman, and Norse mythology, and while these works may be incredibly well-written and cherishable, they don’t introduce us to new figures. (Seriously, if you don’t know at least a few gods/goddesses from the aforementioned three pantheons, you must have been living under a rock your whole life). Stiefvater gives us Welsh mythology and psychics. How much do any of us know offhand about that? I, personally, didn’t know much, so I felt the same sense of wonder as I did when I was a kid reading about the more-well known deities of classical and Nordic myths. That being said, I’m pretty sure she created some of these concepts for her own world, but boy did it work. Every psychic episode thrilled me, as did the exploration of the forest called Cabeswater. It was all so eerie (I love eerie). Her writing shone in these scenes more than any of the others: they were brilliantly executed. Most of the time, I didn’t know where the plot was going -- not in a suspenseful way, but more in a meandering sort of way, which usually annoys me -- but it didn’t bother me in this book. I was always drawn back to it. I just wish the pace of the story had been a bit quicker. Other issue: vague, abstract language. To say that something “smells like dreams” (this was actually pulled from the sequel The Dream Thieves, but stuff like this peppers The Raven Boys as well) tells us nothing. What does a dream smell like? It’s a just flowery, show-offy phrase. Her writing would be stronger without eyeroll-inducing sentences like that. As for characters, I found them likeable and reasonably well-developed. Gansey and Blue stood out in particular as real people rather than caricatures. Ronan, to me, was the archetypal badboy and therefore none too impressive. Adam was very real, as well, but his ungrateful, too-proud personality angered me. I guess that’s part of creating a good, realistic character, though, and it was necessary in order for his actions at the climax/end to make sense. Speaking of the ending/climax, it didn’t suit me. It just didn’t match the tone of the story in my opinion -- too much physicality all of a sudden, and too easy an escape from the primary danger that had been building steadily. But Stiefvater left enough juicy cliffhangers for me to overlook that part. I don’t want to give any away, but I will give these hints: - Adam’s relationship with Cabeswater - Ronan’s ability - Someone going missing There! I said it! That’s enough!
Date published: 2016-01-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Amazing This is the kind of book you start reading in the morning and don't stop until you've fallen asleep (face down in the book of course). Full of magical realism and strong characters you'll be back in the store buying the next one as soon as you can.
Date published: 2015-12-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from MUST READ This book/series demands your life, you will be reading it in all your spare time and it will even make you make time just for it. But it's 100% worth giving up your social life for a while. I LOVE Maggie Stiefvater's work, this series is a must read from her work!
Date published: 2015-10-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it! This is a really great book that I feel a connection to and cant wait to read the others.
Date published: 2015-08-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Stiefvater Does It Best I mean, everyone knows my whole life revolves around Ronan Lynch right? No surprise? Because his name is my url for Goodreads. So clearly I have lots of love for this series, and this book in particular. I picked this one up on a whim when it was $2.99 on Kobo because I had heard some good things about it but wasn't sure if it was going to be something I wanted to read. I know Maggie writes well and all that jazz but I was still a little skeptical. But holy shitballs. This book. This series. I have no words for how much I love it, but I will try to be semi-coherent here. Plot I did think there was a lot of slowness to this book. It took it's time bringing us into the story and explaining the overall plot to us, but because of that I can remember all the nuances and individual plot points of The Raven Boys even though I read it a year ago. Without realizing it, Maggie pulls you into the world so immensely that you start to question whether or not you are tagging along with the raven boys on one of their adventures. Since this is a series, the first book really focused on introductions to the characters which did drag it down a bit, but there was still a legitimate plot arc in this one that was separate yet entangled with the overarching plot that will be developed more in the next books. I read this one once and then once the big mystery was resolved, I read it again and caught on to so many other little things that foreshadowed it that I didn't catch the first time that I had to laugh at myself. It was perfectly executed in my opinion. Characters The characters were so compelling. At first I thought it wouldn't be a big deal that Gansey would die (which isn't a spoiler) because I knew that it was going to happen but after meeting him and getting to know Richard Gansey, I am not sure how I will handle it when it does happen. The story revolves around Blue and Gansey, along with Gansey's three friends, Adam, Ronan, and Noah. The vast majority of my love for this book revolves around the friendship that those four boys share and the way they bring Blue into the mix as if she was a long lost friend (after Ronan threatens her, of course). As much as I love Gansey, he was not my favourite character in this book. Yes, the story focused a lot more on him and Blue in this one, but it was the little glimpses of everyone else that I loved. Gansey, though, was the glue to this entire book and in reality the entire series. He is obsessed with finding ley lines and awakening the ancient Welsh king Glendower, who he believes through his research is hidden somewhere in Virginia. He is passionate about this and will stop at nothing to find him. But that passion also bleeds into the rest of his life: his frinds, his family, his schoolwork, nothing doesn't get 110% of Richard Gansey's attention and concentration. Adam felt as if he was the outsider to the entire group since he was not the typical spoiled rich kid but was on scholarship to attend the same school as Gansey, Ronan, and Noah. He wants to get out of his small little town to bigger and better things because he cannot imagine staying where he is for one second longer. And really, who could blame him. I was sympathetic toward him -- to an extent. He was an asshole sometimes to Gansey when it came to money, but it was obvious that where Gansey never had to think about money and what it meant, that was all Adam could focus on. I thought Adam was kind of greedy and I think because of it he is going to make bad life choices. Noah was not in this book as much as I would have liked. I felt like he should have been more prominently featured in some of this one but I did like him. I feel like he can be more involved in the plot next time and in the series in general. I felt as though there wasn't enough of him for me to make a real connection to him. The last raven boy, and my favourite character, is one Ronan Lynch. I love everything about him. He has a dark past after finding his father dead, causing his family to fall apart. He is a free soul that is clearly reigned in (to an extent) by Gansey, but I want Ronan to be able to run wild. I need so much more than what we are given about Ronan's life and his little Chainsaw. He is so complex that I feel like there are parts of him that Ronan doesn't even know yet. Blue's story is one that was probably the most interesting to me -- but it is also one we got to see a lot more of. She lives with a heavy burden but has such a good support system in her mother and those she lives with that she still has a lot of love and life in her. I liked that it wasn't just a blanket stamp of approval from the boys to include her in their shenanigans but that she had to approach them differently -- individually -- for them to keep her around and want to be around her. Overall: 4/5 stars. I was instantly hooked and obsessed with this novel. It was a real page turner and while it had a complete story arc within this book, it set up the plot for the rest of the novels to play off of. It also takes it's time explaining things and doesn't rush from one plot point to the other but gradually gets there. Slow build of the actual plot but an interesting read.
Date published: 2015-08-16

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Editorial Reviews

Praise for The Raven Boys"Stiefvater is a master storyteller." -USA Today*"It's a tour de force of characterization, and while there is no lack of event or mystery, it is the way Stiefvater's people live in the reader's imagination that makes this such a memorable read." -Publishers Weekly, starred review *"[A] story very few writers could dream up and only Stiefvater could make so palpably real. Simultaneously complex and simple, compulsively readable, marvelously wrought." -Kirkus, starred review *"The book is marvelous, for not only is it filled with marvels, it is also a marvel of imagination . . . this fantasy/mystery rises to the level of serious literature, leaving readers hungering for more." -Booklist, starred review *"An incredibly rich and unique tale, a supernatural thriller of a different flavor." -School Library Journal, starred review"Stiefvater's can't-put-it-down paranormal adventure will leave you clamoring for book 2." -Entertainment Weekly"In a young-adult market crowded with copycats, it's refreshing to find a book that blazes a path as unique as Maggie Stiefvater's The Raven Boys." -Los Angeles Times