Book Review: The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle #2) by Maggie Stiefvater

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Publisher: Scholastic Press

Release date: September 17, 2013

Rating: ★★★★★

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SYNOPSIS

If you could steal things from dreams, what would you take?

Ronan Lynch has secrets. Some he keeps from others. Some he keeps from himself.

One secret: Ronan can bring things out of his dreams.

And sometimes he’s not the only one who wants those things.

Ronan is one of the raven boys – a group of friends, practically brothers, searching for a dead king named Glendower, who they think is hidden somewhere in the hills by their elite private school, Aglionby Academy. The path to Glendower has long lived as an undercurrent beneath town. But now, like Ronan’s secrets, it is beginning to rise to the surface – changing everything in its wake.

MINIMUM TO NO SPOILERS LIE AHEAD. ENJOY!

Maggie Stiefvater is a master story-teller – The Dream Thieves is addictive, filled with mystery and intrigue that will keep you wanting more with every page.

From the very first page, Stiefvater, captured my rapt attention. The Dream Thieves is exhilarating offering a dark and in-depth insight on one of our favorite Raven Boys, Ronan Lynch.

It’s summer in Henrietta, and the Raven Boys (Gansey, Ronan, Adam, and Noah), accompanied by Blue, are on a mission to find Glendower. But things don’t exactly turn out the way they’d expected. First of, Ronan has a secret that no one has every known except for his father. Adam is…different. Ever since he’d made his sacrifice on the ley line things have not been the same. Noah’s presence is slowly dissipating, and Gansey isn’t the only one looking for the mystery surrounding his Welsh King.

Let me just say, that this was absolutely BRILLIANT. I loved every single little thing about this; from the interactions between characters, scenes, and the mystery surrounding Ronan – it was just so well put together.

Let’s face some facts. This book involves a well portion of who Ronan is.  For the first time we get an insight into Ronan’s mind. And oh it is GOOD. There’s also a new perspective added onto the mix.

characters:

Ronan. Dark. Brooding. Cold. Ronan Lynch has officially stolen my heart. There was so much about him that we didn’t know. So much mystery and angst surrounding the Raven Boy that Call referred to Snake. In the sequel, we delve deeper into Ronan’s past, his secrets are revealed along with an ability he’s hidden since he discovered it. He has the remarkable ability to take things from his dreams. Sometimes, he does not get to choose what he can take, but it’s a skill that he hones throughout the novel; ultimately fighting his inner demons.

Adam. Oh, Adam. I feel for him on so many levels. He tries so hard. He wants success, he wants to be someone. But the harder he tries, the easier he’s losing himself. He’s seeing things and the sudden flashes of anger just remind him of his father. The ley line changed him and he’s the only one who can save himself. Truly.

Blue. I absolutely enjoyed seeing Blue develop into a stronger character. I loved her fierceness, especially when it pertained to Ronan. She stuck up for herself and wouldn’t let any of the boys step on her. She’s also very sarcastic and snippy. I couldn’t help saying, “You go, Blue!” at any time she stood up for herself to the boys, which was at least once for every boy. I also liked her inner turmoil about her feelings towards Adam and the blossoming feelings for….well, mum’s the word 😉

Gansey. Gansey boy! I love Gansey. He’s definitely one of my favorite fictional boys. You can see the disheartening disappointment when something horrible and unexpected happens. His anxiety is palpable and his feelings are raw. He cares deeply and it’s definitely one of my favorite things about him. There’s also the fact that he’s different than the cliched version of a “rich guy.” There’s a quote he says to Blue that resonates deeply of who he is:

Because you and I, we’re both…wealthy in love.

Lastly, I can’t forget to mention all the great secondary characters who offer an important role into the whole of the story. There is the new mysterious character known as the Gray Man, who is a hit man. There are the psychics, Maura, Persephone, and Calla who offer an integral part of the story line this time around to different characters. Joseph Kavinsky, who is incomprehensibly destructive and an unforgettable player in this installment. And finally, there is Noah whose fading presence is the result to the disappearance of a place. That’s all I can say to not spoil! Sorry.

world-building:

I really loved the further development of the world Stiefvater created. There’s a little bit more knowledge of the inner workings of the ley line. But most of the book is centered around Ronan, his ability and the inner demons that plague him. We discover how he pulled Chainsaw out of his dream, and the secret that got his father murdered (and who murdered his father). We also discover the extent of Adam’s sacrifice and what it entails.

romance:

When it comes to romance, it involves Blue, Adam, and Gansey. Not necessarily together. C’mon people! – Blue’s fate of not being able to kiss her true love complicates her relationship with Adam. Meanwhile, Blue’s inner turmoil over her feelings towards Gansey is a slow progression. At the beginning of this installment she can’t see herself in love with him. But that slowly changes and it’s really nice to see this particular part of their relationship flourish and blossom. This book also contains one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking kisses in the history of literature! The kiss is fueled by longing and is sweet and delicate. It’s also important (in a different way) for both of the characters, which makes it all the more heartbreaking.

writing style:

I’m a huge fan of Maggie Stiefvater’s writing style. It’s beautiful, lyrical, and filled with symbolism that is subtle and powerful, metaphors that will melt into your heart, and personification that I haven’t read in a story in ages. Some of my favorite quotes entail some of Stiefvater’s beautiful writing.

The gold links of the chain around his neck glittered a grin.

While I’m gone, dream me the world. Something new for every night.

And Ronan was everything that was left: molten eyes and a smile made for war.

His eyes were frighteningly alive, the curve of his mouth savage and pleased. It suddenly didn’t seem at all surprising that he should be able to pull things from his dreams.

It was mint and memories and the past and the future and she felt as if she’d done this before and already she longed to do it again.

I could write an entire essay of how beautiful, cleaver, and captivating Maggie’s writing is, but that would take eons. Eons, I tell you! Trust when I say that it’s absolutely spellbinding and one of a kind.

finale:
The ending completely blew my mind. I stayed up finishing this book because 1) I couldn’t put it down and 2) I just really wanted to finish and see what was going to happen. I stayed up until midnight knowing that I had to get up in 5 hours for work. Yet, I couldn’t bring myself to sleep so I finished and the conclusion left my mind utterly speechless. Stiefvater does it again with a completely jarring cliffhanger that fuels endless theories of what on earth happened. It was unexpected and I cannot wait to see what Stiefvater has in store in the next installment.

I. NEED. THE. NEXT. BOOK. NOW. LIKE. I. NEED. AIR.

Overall, this book was purely magic. Maggie Stiefvater is a master story-teller – The Dream Thieves is addictive, filled with mystery, one of a kind characters, clever humor, and intrigue that will keep you wanting more with every page. I highly recommend reading the sequel, if you were iffy. If you haven’t read this series, then what are you waiting for?

Fret not. If you have not read this series, I am giving away a SIGNED copy of The Raven Boys, first book in the series. Giveaway will be up for the next couple of weeks! For more information, check out my Giveaways page!

P.S. How do you like the break down of my review in sections? I’m kind of iffy about it. What do you guys think?

Emma

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  1. Goodbye September, Hello October | Books Forget Me Knot

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