ABOUT THE BOOK:
Title: The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle #2)
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Publishing: September 17, 2013 (Scholastic Press)
Format: Hardcover, 439 pages
Source: Self-purchased finished copy from Barnes & Noble
“While I’m gone,” Gansey said, pausing, “dream me the world. Something new for every night.”
The second installment in the all-new series from the masterful, #1 NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater!
Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same. Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life. Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after…
First, little background…
A few months ago, a good friend of mine (that happens to be an avid reader) advised me to literally drop everything and get The Raven Cycle immediately! I, of course, listened to my trusted friend/book buddy and ordered the full hardcover set from Barnes and Noble online. Once it arrived, I made the plan to work my way through the series one book per month until I finished (*note: I try really hard to savor highly recommended series rather than binge read them, as to not regret or miss anything). My friend also told me that I would love the four main guys in the books, but probably more so like brothers or best friends, as opposed to the book boyfriends she and I typically oogle over. I began The Raven Boys in late-April and adored it. I rated The Raven Boys a 4-star on Goodreads. It was not my typical taste, but I loved it thoroughly nonetheless. As my friend suspected, I felt a fondness towards the boys, especially Gansey. I also love Blue’s sassiness; she and I would probably get along well. I came away from The Raven Boys feeling fulfilled.
Onto The Dream Thieves…
The Dream Thieves picked up where The Raven Boys left off. However, I quickly discovered that the second installment of The Raven Cycle primarily focuses on the story of Ronan Lynch. The reader continues on the mission to uncover the mysteries of Henrietta and Glendower, but the point of view shifts to mostly that of Ronan. I started off reading this book slowly because, to be frank, I was not the biggest Ronan fan in The Raven Boys, but I learned to love him by the end of this book.
What do I love most? I know the streets of Henrietta and the trees of Cabeswater. I know the sounds and smells of the Pig. I know the unique personalities of the boys of Aglionby Academy. I know the chaos of the ladies of 300 Fox Way. I know the twisting history of Glendower. I feel this way not because it is a reality, but because Maggie Stiefvater has the distinct capability of describing the people and places in her works so fully that I walk away from her books feeling like it could be a reality.
Henrietta and Cabeswater became characters themselves, and there is emanating personification of the two throughout the book. I felt concern and relief for them, as I did Adam or Ronan, and began to know them as if I had actually been there myself or as if they were people in the book, too. The Pig became nostalgic. Broken down or wrecked Pig became customary. I feel like I KNOW each of the boys; truly know them. They have each experienced things in their lives that have made them who they are, and without those experiences, I don’t think they would be Blue’s boys; I don’t think the story would have ended the same way. Blue is the best kind of firecracker! Light her up and she goes flying in a stream of heat and embers. I think Blue found a bit of herself in this book that she didn’t know existed before, and it took a little of each of her Raven boys to lead her there (there was also a scene with Noah was so so sweet — and I will not spoil it — that had me grinning but still feeling sorry for her at the same time). I also think the chaos and protectiveness of Blue’s family played a key role in this book, especially with the elusive Mr. Gray. Lastly, Glendower has brought this group together and, at times, nearly torn them apart. More continues to be revealed, and I find myself wondering if Glendower is worth it.
As a final thought, Maggie has this uncanny ability to create malefactors that surprise me, and The Dream Thieves had several. Mr. Gray had quite a few characters revolve around him, which made the plot very intriguing. I could not bring myself to dislike him at any point, although, I found myself questioning Maura Sargent’s parenting a time or two during scenes involving him. On the contrary, I did easily dislike Joseph Kavinsky. His character, though, helped reveal a few key plot elements, so I am thankful to his character for that.
Overall, I really enjoyed The Dream Thieves. I grew to like Ronan more by the end, but I think the book being largely about him and my lack of an inclination towards him is what kept me from giving this a 5-star rating. It was well-written and a good follow-up to The Raven Boys.