The magic of Cabeswater and the author’s lyrical writing draw you into this quartet of books. They are infused with magic and trickery and mystery but what I enjoyed the most was the delicate way in which the author wrote about the feelings and actions of Blue, Gansey, Adam and Ronan.
This a series for lovers of fantasy and suspense – the complicated storyline makes it difficult for readers to predict the ending. However, if you are thinking of fantasy in terms of fairies and vampires, think again. The fantasy element that pervades the story and the lives of the characters is tied to legends and ancient spiritual beliefs, making it almost tangible and believable.
To me, the real beauty of these books is the language, the descriptions, the way a few words conjure up the depth and beauty of the character’s feelings.
Book 1 – The Raven Boys
Blue has always been told that if she kisses her true love, he will die. It’s one of the problems of growing up in a house of psychics. When she meets a group of boys from Algionby High, the Raven Boys, she becomes involved in their search for the ley lines that run through the town and things become complicated and mysterious and dangerous.
Book 2 – The Dream Thieves
Central to the story is Gansey’s search for the mythical Glendower, but in this book each of the characters is also facing their own personal issues. Blue struggles with her feelings for the boys, unsure of whom she cares for most, Adam worries about the sacrifice he made in order to open the Ley Line and Ronan is caught up in more and more dangerous dreams. At the same time other people are circling, interested in the same things as the boys and violently determined to grab their power and magic.
Book 3 – Blue Lily, Lily Blue
Gansey seems to be getting closer to finding Glendower but there is still plenty for all the group to understand and uncover – not only about the mysteries of Glendower and Cabeswater, but about themselves. Blue takes a more central role in this book – her mother is missing and her feelings for Gansey are growing, as is her need to understand her own power. Adam is learning how to work with Cabeswater and the Ley Line and his new role helps him to come out of his shell a little more. Ronan is still a difficult character but he appears more at peace. The group’s adventures lead to them to more exciting and dangerous discoveries, but no solutions.
Book 4 – The Raven King
The final book in the Raven Boys Quartet follows Blue, Gansey, Adam and Ronan as they battle a force of evil that threatens to destroy Cabeswater and their lives. The search for Glendower continues but the hovering darkness and the danger it promises overshadows everything. New characters come to prominence and the relationships of the four main characters are a core focus of the story.