[The Dream Thieves: The Raven Cycle II] Maggie Stiefvater

So I’ll be honest. I read the rest of the series after The Raven Boys in about a week. It’s that good and addictive.

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The Dream Thieves picks up where The Raven Boys left off, with a focus on Ronan. After revealing that he can take things out of his dreams in the last book, the others are a little in awe of Ronan’s abilities. Ronan begins to take more fantastic things out of his dreams, things that don’t exist in the real world until he wills it. When things from his nightmares start showing up, he realizes that he needs to gain control over his abilities before something worse moves from his nightmares to reality. As Gansey and the others continue to use the ley lines to search for Glendower, others are searching for dream things, leading them to Henrietta and the boys. The search for Glendower has never been more dangerous.

Like the first book, the narration is divided between the raven boys, Blue, and a few others. Even so, this book is very much about Ronan. I really enjoyed that there was a focus on his secrets and how he came to terms with them by the end of The Dream Thieves. Ronan was my least favorite of the characters after reading the first book, but by the end of this one I found that I really liked him. He’s possibly even my favorite character now. Like all of Stiefvater’s characters, he was slowly and realistically developed. She has an incredible talent at showing who her characters are, including their motivations and desires–even the ones they hide from themselves. And the ones they hide from themselves are the more interesting ones. They’ll make for some good interactions when they finally come out.

What’s interesting about the first two books of The Raven Cycle is that there’s romance, but it is absolutely not the focus. I thought there’d be more in this one since it’s a second book, but not so. It is an ultimate slow-burn romance. Stiefvater gives her characters and readers a little taste, but not enough to distract from the quest. Again, there’s more of a focus on friendship and family relationships. I really enjoy this part of Stiefvater’s character writing. These are the relationships that are around you before romance comes into the picture. I love that we can really see how the friendship between Blue and the raven boys is developing in an in-depth way.

Another character who had a little more growth in The Dream Thieves was Adam. After the events of The Raven Boys, the others don’t quite know how to interact with him. Adam himself doesn’t really know how to interact with them. Things have changed and no one knows what to do about it. Adam discovering his own talents parallel to Ronan discovering his was a nice touch and set them up to mirror each other a bit. They both have abilities that stem from their relationship to the magical side of Henrietta and their role as caretakers of a sort.

Although this is a part of the larger narration of finding Glendower, I felt like this one almost had stand-alone qualities, or at least a side-quest feel.There seemed to be so little of the Glendower quest in this one, which meant that it was basically a character building book. Of course, Ronan and the others’ lives are woven into Glendower’s and Cabeswater, so it’s never really apart from them.

Again, The Dream Thieves ends on a cliff-hanger which drives the reader toward the next book. I’m so glad that I didn’t pick these up as they were being published because I would have died a little if I’d had to wait long between the second and third books (and the third and fourth). I highly recommend this for readers who like paranormal/fantasy young adult books set in the real world. If you like a little bit of poetry with your writing, you’ll likely like this series.

5 stars.

More Summer Reading: My August Books

August is a good time to read a ton of books. My work placement is very unique in the sense that although I have to go to work, I don’t actually have much work until it starts up again in mid-September. So, that means lots of reading. I’m going to try to remember to read and review on time (instead of reading a lot of them and then realizing that I haven’t reviewed any, oops!) this time around.

In addition to books, I have some backlogs of reviews and a post about seeing The Cursed Child in London (!!) to do. I also am excited about doing an author interview. I’m really hoping that it works out!  Right now I’m working on reviews–but I also have The Dream Thieves open on my kindle because I can’t resist. So without further ado:

*・゜Finishing Up*・゜

I really love this series. I thought that I’d get to the third one too, but I ended up putting this one last on my list and am only getting to the end now.

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Over halfway through now, the only downside of this book is I kind of feel that it’s very much a middle book–things happen, but not as much as I feel they did in THE RAVEN BOYS.

*****

*・゜Coming Up *・゜

Books, books, books. So many books. Some are newish, some are getting up there, and others are brand new from NetGalley!

I'm going to move on to this one immediately after THIEVES because I imagine it'll be a cliffhanger again.

I’m going to move on to this one immediately after THIEVES because I imagine it’ll be a cliffhanger again.

Finally got my hands on a copy. It's a love story, I think? That's all I know about it, really. Interested in checking it out!

Finally got my hands on a copy. It’s a love story, I think? That’s all I know about it, really. Interested in checking it out!

 

Flynn's girlfriend is missing. And he doesn't know the answers to the cops' questions. It sounds like a little bit of a mystery! I've had it on my kindle for awhile, so I'd like to get to it this month.

Flynn’s girlfriend is missing. And he doesn’t know the answers to the cops’ questions. It sounds like a little bit of a mystery! I’ve had it on my kindle for awhile, so I’d like to get to it this month. October 2016.

 

When prejudices were high, it was forbidden to fall in love with certain people. This sounds like a tense read because of that and because it's set up with a disaster looming in the background.

When prejudices were high, it was forbidden to fall in love with certain people. This sounds like a tense read because of that and because it’s set up with a disaster looming in the background.

 

Recommended to me by an author friend, this is a series of episodic novellas about a homeless woman and her friend, a dragon. I'm intrigued to see how fantasy tropes play out in the streets.

Recommended to me by an author friend, this is a series of episodic novellas about a homeless woman and her friend, a dragon. I’m intrigued to see how fantasy tropes play out in the streets. October 2016.

*****

I hope that I can get to more (possibly The Raven King) but I’ll have to see how August plays out. Happy summer reading~! Now I’m off to binge read!