The Raven King (The Raven Cycle #4) by Maggie Stiefvater

The_Raven_King_Cover_OfficialNothing living is safe. Nothing dead is to be trusted.

For years, Gansey has been on a quest to find a lost king. One by one, he’s drawn others into this quest: Ronan, who steals from dreams; Adam, whose life is no longer his own; Noah, whose life is no longer a lie; and Blue, who loves Gansey… and is certain she is destined to kill him.

Now the endgame has begun. Dreams and nightmares are converging. Love and loss are inseparable. And the quest refuses to be pinned to a path.

I think I had a bit of an emotional let down with The Raven King. After all, it is the fourth and final book of a hugely popular series and one that I have enjoyed and favorably reviewed.  I think I was looking for more of an impact; more “wow” or something.

I listened to this last book in the Raven Cycle series in the car. And frankly am not sure what to make of it. I enjoyed the prose and imagination of Stiefvater as always. In fact, as I was listening I would catch myself marveling at the wordplay and creativity.

And there were some interesting twists and turns. But perhaps because I was listening to it in 20-30 minutes spurts (the length of my commute usually) it didn’t seem to all come together for me in a satisfying way. It was like I enjoyed the parts but felt like the whole was somehow less than it should have been.

It would probably would work better if I read the whole series again so that I could put the book into context of the other books.  But I am not sure I am ready for that level of dedication.

Plus, lets be honest, this is a book for teens and much of the emotion and connections (romance, angst, etc.) don’t resonate with me in the same way they might readers of that age and perspective. So take that into account.

Add in the listening versus reading part and it just came off unfulfilled.  Not bad just not great or amazing or along those lines.

Still, I recommend the series as a whole for those who have not yet experienced it.

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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