Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle #3) by Maggie Stiefvater

I was excited to be able to get a review copy of Blue Lily, Lily Blue via NetGalley and dived into it right away. But technical issue on the site and life intervened and I haven’t been able to post my thoughts. Until now!

What is book #3 in the Raven Cycle about?

Blue Lily CoverThere 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 have to say, I really enjoyed getting back into this world and the characters Stiefvater creates. This third book seemed more atmospheric and character driven rather an action and plot driven. Very little happens, for long sections, in fact.

Instead of lots of action there is a general sense of suspense and mystery, if not dread, hanging over everything. The characters are all basically wrestling with “What now?” Given the events of the past, and the reality that is sinking in as a result, what happens moving forward?

Each character is finding out who they are and who they are becoming; how these relationships are structured and how they might move forward. But until then end when some of the threads start to come together there isn’t much of a plot. As one Amazon reviewer put it, the book feels like a really long epilogue to the Dream Thieves. Because of the author’s prose and the strength of the characters I enjoyed reading it but you really have to have read the first two books to enjoy this one, IMO.

The story’s drive picked up toward the end and, of course, leaves you wanting to read the next book more than ever. “Leave them wanting more” is a good strategy for an author I guess …

PW gets it right again:

As in the previous books, Stiefvater’s razor-sharp characterizations, drily witty dialogue, and knack for unexpected metaphors and turns of phrase make for sumptuous, thrilling reading. Curses, grisly secret plots, and romantic uncertainties leave Blue and company’s future feeling more fragile than ever. A brutal cliffhanger ensures that readers will snap up the final installment the second it’s available.

If you haven’t yet experienced this wonderful series, start with The Raven Boys and get cracking.

Kevin Holtsberry
I work in communications and public affairs. I try to squeeze in as much reading as I can while still spending time with my wife and two kids (and cheering on the Pittsburgh Steelers and Michigan Wolverines during football season).

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