I feel like I would've appreciated this book much more a few years ago, when I was younger and newer to feminism. Fifteen-year-old me, for example, woI feel like I would've appreciated this book much more a few years ago, when I was younger and newer to feminism. Fifteen-year-old me, for example, would've loved this. Present-day me feels like this book didn't give me enough. Not enough substance in each chapter. Not enough actual solutions. Not anything that I didn't already know. As somebody who already identifies as a feminst and has already done my homework on the matter - I didn't actually get anything out of this.
I feel like the casual style that works well in a blog sometimes doesn't work as well in a book, and that this one is an example of that. However, it is a nice and simple introduction to a lot of double standards. And, if I could mail it back in time to my younger self, I would probably do it. So long as you're not looking for an academic work (and I was kind of expecting a more academic work) - it's a good, lighhearted book about double standards. ...more
So, this was amazing. Admittedly not quite as perfect as The Dream Thieves, but pretty damn perfect. I originally had a conviction not to give these bSo, this was amazing. Admittedly not quite as perfect as The Dream Thieves, but pretty damn perfect. I originally had a conviction not to give these books five stars until I'd seen the whole story (because they're not so much installments as one story released with painful gaps between parts), but I need to give that up. These are five star books. I have no doubt that the last book will do the series justice. (After we all wait an agonizing amount of time for it).
Things I Liked - Gansey. I love him more with each book. This seems to be a bit of an unpopular opinion - but he is my favorite character. I was fascinated by the pieces we got of his previous seven years of hunting Glendower, and how he became who he is. All those different versions of himself that he puts on and takes off had to come from somewhere - and I love every hint of how he built his various personality masks. I don't want him to die, but I understand if, for story reasons, he has to by the end of the series.
- Blue. This seemed to be Blue's Focus-Book in the sense that The Dream Thieves was Ronan's, and I liked that. I love 300 Fox Way and Blue's relationships with all of the women there. Blue as a mirror, Blue as an aura, and Blue as something just as powerful as a psychic, but different. It was all fantastic. It was all great development.
- The vision from The Raven Boys and how it fits seamlessly into Blue and Gansey's story here.
- Blue and Gansey's midnight phone calls. Just, everything about them. From the facts about the ducks, to "you're still not Congress", to Blue calling from the Cat/Phone/Sewing room at 300 Fox Way when it's empty, and Gansey taking those calls in the Kitchen/Bathroom/Laundry at Monmouth Manufacturing so as not to wake Ronan. And, of course, the heartbreak of how neither of them acknowledge it in the morning.
- Orla not wanting Blue to get hurt, but going about saying that in a pretty cruel, sibling-rivalry (well, cousin-rivalry) way.
- The Gray Man. I didn't really care about him in The Dream Thieves, but he grew on me here. I like Potential-Father-Figure Gray Man. The scenes with him and Blue were adorable.
- The potential for a Gray Man/Maura/Artemus love triangle. Normally, not a fan of love triangles, but I could go for this.
- Adam and Ronan. Adam's awareness of Ronan's crush on him. Every scene with the two of them. The staring at each other in an empty church. The plotting against Greenmantle. How Adam's narration connects the two of them through "lonesome". The trusting each other with their secrets. How they're both connected to Cabeswater. Just, everything.
- The parallels between Blue/Gansey and Adam/Ronan. So many parallels. So many great parallels.
- The recurring image of mirrors.
- Noah reading minds.
- Piper, and how she is way more scary than Greenmantle is.
- Jesse Dittley. Everything about Jesse Dittley. Every interaction between him and Blue.
- How the St. Mark's Eve List becomes relevant to the plot again. And how Adam figures out who's on it.
- Ronan and Blue's friendship. They are actually very similar people, and I want them to be better friends.
- Holy crap, the reveal about Matthew. And how Declan just drops that on Ronan and leaves town. I wanted to smack him.
- Parallels drawn between Gansey and Noah.
- Gansey and Ronan showing up at the courthouse. Great scene.
- As always, the Pig.
Things I Didn't Like
- The pacing in the first half was a little bit all over the place.
- How did Ronan get out of the caves? He couldn't cross the mirrored lake, and I was under the impression that the other way out closed after the magically awoken animals passed through. I mean, I'm glad Ronan got out, I'm just not clear on how.
- I wanted to shake Maura. But that was probably the point.
***Spoilers End Here***
As with all of Maggie Stiefvater's books, this one was amazing. I sat down and read it all in one go, over the course of a day. I skipped meals and sleep so that I wouldn't have to stop. My roommates seem to think that I've lost my mind. Totally worth it.
The problem, now, is waiting for the last book. And going back to my real life even though The Raven Cycle has consumed my brain. ...more
This was great. And sad. And hopeful. And basically everything that I wanted it to be. It rounded out the series, tied up many but not all of the loosThis was great. And sad. And hopeful. And basically everything that I wanted it to be. It rounded out the series, tied up many but not all of the loose ends, had believable stakes and tragedy, and was as all-engrossing as the other books in this trilogy.
***Potential Spoilers Ahead***
Things I Liked
- Kami. As always, I love her. I love how she is the exact opposite of reserved, how she never stops fighting, how much she cares about her family and friends, and how she always believes that they're capable of succeeding. I love how good Kami is. It's refreshing. Especially because of how popular antiheroes are recently. Sometimes you need a good old-fashioned not-reluctant hero.
- Angela. Lazy, caring, actually reserved Angela. She lost the most out of everyone - and remained strong and herself.
- Holly. I loved her when she was first introduced, and I love her even more now. She's an expert at stepping up to the plate when people need her.
- Jared. There's noticably less of him in this book - most noticibly less of his POV. But, there can't be space for everything. I normally really dislike miscommunication as a plot device - but there's so much going on that the reason he and Kami don't talk to each other is more that they don't have time. And that makes sense. As aggravating as it was.
- Ash. Oh, Ash. He's grown on me, definitely. I love that he gets to be a character outside of the alternate-love-interest position. I especially love the fraternal relationship between him and Jared. It was one of my favorite parts of the book.
- Lillian. Specifically, Lillian and Jon. They're hilarious.
- Jon. Stepping up to the plate. Much like Holly, but in a very different way.
- Martha. I love Martha.
- Claire grew on me a little bit. Tomo grew on me a lot. I've always loved Ten.
- Jared and Kami.
- Jared being protective of Ash.
- The gothic-trope nature of being burried alive.
- Finally getting some answers as to Anne-Matthew-Elinor past stuff.
- Everything about Rusty. Even the tragic end of him. (Oh my god did that hurt. Rusty's speech about how he and Kami were the kind of dream that isn't supposed to come true - that teaches you who you want to be. How much Rusty knew that he wanted to be someone like Jon Glass. How he never got to be that. I cried).
- Just the idea of a dream that isn't supposed to come true. Everything about the scene where Rusty says that.
- The "Can I?" scene. Swoonworthy.
- The imagery of Kami-and-Ash being a piece of land never built upon. The towers would've been great, but the space is great on its own, too.
- The humor, as always. I read much of this book in the middle of the night, trying to stifle laughter so that I didn't wake up my roommates. It resulted in a lot of awkward muffled snorting.
Things I Didn't Like
- Climax felt rushed. Getting rid of Rob is a blink-and-you'll-miss-it kind of moment. Like, seriously, I had to go back and re-read the paragraph because I practically missed it by figuring that Rob couldn't be defeated so quickly and easily without anyone really getting near him, moved on to the next page, realized that people seemed to be doing post-defeat-the-bad-guy stuff and had to go back. Defeating Rob should've been much harder. Or at least taken longer.
- Not enough Kami-and-Jared in the second half. I wanted to see how Kami thinking he might be dead for months would affect the way she interacted with him. That didn't seem to happen.
- How much time has passed between defeating-Rob and the scenes at the end where Jon is painting a mural and Ash is back from attending art school in London? I have no idea how long it's been. Days? Weeks? Long enough for Ash to be going to a different school, not long enough that Kami and Jared have had a chance to talk? I'm confused.
- I figured that the link between Kami and Jared would be reestablished, and so I'm not surprised or disapointed...but at the same time, part of me kind of hoped they would have to figure out how to communicate with each other without it. They made a lot of progress in Untold, and I kind of hoped they would have to continue to make that kind of progress. But, at the same time, I'm happy that they have the link back because their descriptions of never having been lonely before it was broken were heartbreaking and I want them to be happy.
***Spoilers End Here***
Great end to a great series. Read it. Cry. Laugh. (Try to do both quietly if you are like me and have roommates you do not wish to wake at 3 AM). That's pretty much all there is to say....more
This book was amazing. This series is amazing. Maggie Stiefvater's writing is as excellent and lyrical and engrossing as ever.
So, on to the specifics.This book was amazing. This series is amazing. Maggie Stiefvater's writing is as excellent and lyrical and engrossing as ever.
So, on to the specifics.
***As Always, Potential Spoilers Ahead***
Things I Liked
- Gansey. If I liked him in The Raven Boys, I absolutely love him now. I love how there are so many different versions to Gansey - each one farther than the last from the image he feels expected to maintain. I'm fascinated by the way he practically embodies duality, but has a tough time seeing it in other people (for instance - he keeps looking for the Ronan from before Niall's death, without realizing that present-day Ronan is both different and the same. He doesn't see that Adam can both care about him and resent him). I'm also interested in his most grevious faults - the way he fails to see other people's points of view particularly on matters of economic class, feels terrible about it, but doesn't know how to fix that fault.
- Blue. I love her. I love her search for something more, and how it parallels Gansey's. I love how honest with herself she is about her emotions - when she realizes that she isn't interested in Adam the way she thought she was, and that she's interested in Gansey in a way she thought impossible. The contrast between being from a family full of women and suddenly befriending a group of boys is also really interesting. Along with her vague resentment of Orla (whom she both loves and resents) for embodying a specific kind of femininity that Blue does not (not that Blue isn't feminine in ways different from Orla). Blue is a great example for how to write a feminist character in a largely male-dominated narrative and have her be unflinchingly awesome and fit in the story as much as anyone else.
- Ronan. Oh, Ronan. His grief is as familiar to me as Blue's family situation, and I've had a soft spot for Ronan since The Raven Boys. I'm fascinated by the way that he toes the line between dream and reality, but manages to tell the two apart. As somebody who was raised Catholic, his story takes on even more weight for me for the amount that I understand that aspect of his character. I'm also fascinated by the kind of duality that lies in Ronan's potential romantic relationships - and how it goes back to that quote in The Raven Boys about how there's no room for casual flings in Ronan's personal moral code. He can lust after Kavinsky with the violent and self-destructive side of himself - but it was never going anywhere because Ronan didn't want it to. His crush on Adam is much subtler, and more in line with the kind of emotion that does have a place in Ronan's moral code. Lust vs. Love, if you will, although I'm not sure that a crush is yet to the level of Love. But it could be.
- Adam. More specifically, Adam's anger. It's a really interesting aspect of his character to be explored - this idea that he has inherited some of his father's anger, and that he needs to diffuse it and not become his father. I'm always interested in the way that he thinks that other people can sense where he came from, even when they obviously can't. All the people he meets at Gansey's family's party don't think there is anything about him that is out of place - it's all in his head. I also like the parallel between Gansey and Adam - how they each would rather be part of the other's world. Adam would like to be in D.C., Gansey would like to stay in Henrietta. They are each expected to do the opposite.
- Noah. And the glittery snowglobe. And the scene where Ronan thows him out a window just to see what will happen.
- The Camero. I love cars. I love how somebody different seems to steal the Camero in each of these books. I desperately miss my car because it is back at my mother's house because my college will not grant me parking this year.
- The field of a hundred white Mitsubishi's. What a scene.
- Kind of Kavinsky - although that's more that I love to hate him. He is a terrible person, but a really interesting terrible person. Why can he steal things from his dreams? Can lots of people do that? If only Ronan is the Greywaren, how many people are Theives? I want answers! (And I don't think I'm going to get them).
- The reference to Pygmalion in regards to Aurora Lynch and the fact that she is not, technically, real.
- Calla. Just, everything about Calla.
Things I Didn't Like
- I never actually cared about The Gray Man.
- Adam's attempt to use "feminist" as an insult. It's very in-character. It makes total sense in the scene that he would say it. It just makes me mad at him. (Is this even a bad thing? It's a scene written well enough to make me legitimately mad at a character).
- What was with the Gray Man's brother? Was I supposed to find him scarier than I did? Because the Gray Man was a professional at killing people - I didn't really think his brother stood a chance.
- Who am I kidding? This book was basically flawless. I'm trying to nitpick and that's not even working.
***Spoilers End Here***
Overall, excellent book. Great continuation of the series. I desperately need book three. Like, right now. This series has taken over my brain the way Wolves of Mercy Falls did when it came out. Maggie Stiefvater is magic....more
This was a re-read for me, before I move on to the Dream Theives, but I realized that I hadn't written a review last time, and I might as well now.
***This was a re-read for me, before I move on to the Dream Theives, but I realized that I hadn't written a review last time, and I might as well now.
***Possible Spoilers Ahead***
Things I Liked:
- Maggie Stiefvater's writing, as always. She's amazing.
- The relatively slow pace. I know, people complain about slow pacing, but it's actually something I really like when it's done well. Sometimes, I want something that doesn't reveal its answers quickly, and that doesn't have everybody running for their lives every other page. This is a quest, not a battle.
- The quest. I love quests.
- Gansey. Especially when we see the insecurity behind the politican's mask he uses to influence people.
- Ronan. I like that he is kind of an aquired taste as a person, and not immediately likable. I like that it's acknowledged that he was different before his father's death, because I think that is really relatable.
- Blue and her family. There's a particular experience of living in a house full of women (psychics or otherwise) that I think this novel captures really well. After my father died but before I was out of high school, I lived with my mother, her best friend, and my older sister. And, although there weren't any rituals or creepily-specific predictions, it was quite a bit like this.
- Noah's identity. Spectacular twist.
- Adam and Ronan's relationship. They fight, but they care about each other. It's an interesting sort of friendship.
- The Camero. The BMW. Just, generally, cars that are also kind of characters. I love that.
Things I Didn't Like
- Blue's name. I know, the weirdness gets acknowledged, and I'm being nitpicky - but I'm not fond of it.
Overall, this was a great book. I can't wait to read The Dream Theives and find out what happens to Blue and the Raven Boys next.