Monday, October 27, 2014

ARC Review: Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Steifvater

Title: Blue Lily, Lily Blue
Series: The Raven Cycle #3
Author: Maggie Steifvater
Published: October 21, 2014 by Scholastic
(Amazon / Goodreads)

Synopsis: There is danger in dreaming. But there is even more danger in waking up.

Blue Sargent has found things. For the first time in her life, she has friends she can trust, a group to which she can belong. The Raven Boys have taken her in as one of their own. Their problems have become hers, and her problems have become theirs.

The trick with found things though, is how easily they can be lost.

Friends can betray.
Mothers can disappear.
Visions can mislead.
Certainties can unravel

*** I received a copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest view in return. This fact has not changed my opinion ***

I feel like a broken record with this series. I just keep parroting the same thing over and over again. But seriously with every passing book The Raven Cycle series keeps getting better and better. The characters are well-rounded and likable, the plot is intricate and mysterious, and the writing is beautiful and engaging.

First the characters. I have such feels for every one of them! I've said it before and I'll say it again, these characters are so real I can't help but love them. The more time we spend with them the more that they grow on me. The more that I learn about them, the more I like them. What I love about these characters that Maggie has created is that they are not perfect. They have strengths and weaknesses which makes them the kind of complex and well-rounded characters that are always more interesting to read about. It's hard to pinpoint who is the main character here. Gansey is determined and intelligent but single-minded and kind of selfish. Ronan who is tough with this hard exterior has a heart of gold and a dark sense of humor that I love. Adam is independent and hard-working but also stubborn and headstrong (side note I'm loving his development with the magical elements of the story). And Blue who is sassy and tough but puts up this wall so that others can't connect. That's sort of a theme with these characters. While they make up this great group and are amazing friends, they feel like no one understands them and won't really let others get close to them. It makes for some interesting ships (ugh, these ships are so amazing and so frustrating).

As the title may lead you to believe however, I'd say this is Blue's book. She is the focal point for the main plot thread of this book. She is the one who has to resolve the conflict for us to reach the exciting climax we have become accustomed to in this series. But that doesn't mean that Gansey, Adam, and Ronan don't get a ton of screen time too. The more time I spend with this series the more I realize that it is a coming-of-age story disguised as a supernatural adventure (I mean Maggie did use the word bildungsroman in the last book). Each of these characters have to come to some sort of enlightened development and learn who they are. In this book it was Blue who got that opportunity (plus Adam a little bit but who's keeping track). And along the way there were mysteries that were established and resolved, and tons of big reveals that led to more than one shocking surprise that left me confused and entertained.

That's one of the things that I love about this series, the plot is so intricate and expertly executed. I said it in my review of The Dream Thieves and it is less evident here but it is still true. With each book there is the larger plot that takes up the basis for the series and a specific plot to that book with a clear conflict and a clear climax. But until that climax, things are very complicated and confusing. I will say, in Blue Lily, Lily Blue, I was less annoyed by the constantly changing perspectives. It's something that I generally don't love but it seemed to work in this one. Perhaps because each smaller plotline seemed to lead to the same place. As the series winds down the steps are leading to the main conclusion of the series that began in The Raven Boys and as the focus narrows things start making more sense. I'm excited for that conclusion, especially after the way this book ended.  

But I'm also not ready for it all to end! I've really enjoyed the time I have spend in the world of The Raven Cycle and Henrietta, Virginia. It is the perfect combination of Supernatural and Low Fantasy. There is definitely magic at work here, and the magic is growing with each passing book. The focus of this magic is also shifting from the general magic within the world to the individual character's magic (and that's all I will say about that). Plus Maggie does a great job of immersing us in this world of magic and intrigue. Her writing is gorgeous and lyrical. It gives the reader this sense of pleasant unease that perfectly compliments the world of magic and mystery. And this time it was easy to just fall into the world and read chunks of the book at a time. Maybe that's because it had more action and adventure, or maybe it's because I'm more used to the style. Either way it was a great continuation to this series.

I give Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater a 9.5 out of 10

Buy, Borrow, or Bypass: Buy! I have fallen hard for this series and Blue Lily, Lily Blue is just the latest in a fantastic Supernatural Fantasy with complex and likable characters, an intricate plot full of adventure, and with beautiful writing that helps you fall head first into this world. Run to your bookstore and pick up a copy if you haven't yet!

If you have read Blue Lily, Lily Blue what did you think? Are you as hooked on this series as I am? Leave me a comment with you thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!


  1. I've not yet read a Maggie Stiefvater novel, but I've read nothing but good reviews on them! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

    Kristen @ One Chapter Ahead

    1. This was my first Maggie experience and it was definitely a good one. I'll have to check some of her other stuff out now! Hope you read and enjoy her too.

  2. I've got to start this series by her soon, I wasn't a big fan of her Mercy Falls series but this one seems more up my alley. I'm glad you loved it!
    -Kimberly @ Turning the Pages

    1. I've heard that a lot of people enjoy this one more than the Mercy Falls series. I definitely recommend it but I haven't read the other series so I can't judge them together.

  3. I keep saying I'm going to start this series and I day.

    1. One day... soon? It's really good. I suggest marathoning it next October when book 4 comes out!