The Dream Thieves – Maggie Stiefvater

This is the book that cemented this series into the favourites pile. Because as soon as I was done, I went back and reread parts over again and I realised how much I loved it.

BTW, there are a few spoilers for the book, so you’ve been warned. Enter at your own risk.

Cons

I can see this book having negatives for some people, because it’s not fast paced. You’d think, as it’s kind of a realistic fantasy, it would be fast-paced and action-packed, but it’s got the pacing of a contemporary novel. Personally, I loved the pacing, but I can see some people not enjoying it if they went into the book for a plot-oriented story.

Pros

The Kiss and The Almost Kiss

These two scenes broke my heart.

I don’t what else there is to say.

Just… the context from which they’re formed and the way they are built up to… it’s just all so painful and beautiful and lovely and awful.

Realistic

You don’t realise how obviously fictitious something is until you read something like The Raven Cycle where everything feels so completely normal. It convinces you that this world must exist, because everything is so plausible and the characters are fully formed and their actions make sense and I don’t even know how Maggie Stiefvater does it every time but I completely fell into the world. I believed it all.

I guess it’s because it doesn’t rely on sudden, unexpected plot twists. It’s not like “And then, Blue realised that Adam was in fact… DUN DUN DUN … Gansey’s long lost twin sister.” The story always remains grounded, and whatever twists there are make sense in the scope of the story.

Characters

I don’t even know where to begin.

I could probably talk about all of these wonderful (and not so wonderful) people.

Maybe I will.

But two really need to be mentioned.

“And Ronan was everything that was left: molten eyes and a smile made for war.” 

This is a Ronan Book. Right from the Prologue all the way to the end, the main plot line is Ronan and this ability. While I felt the Raven Boys was definitely more of a Blue book, this is where Ronan really shines. The interesting journey of the reader and Ronan is that from the beginning of the Raven Boys, he’s not that likeable. Fun to read about, sure, but also a massive douchenozzle. But by the end of the Dream Thieves, I found myself unable to hate him. There is so much depth to his character that I won’t even begin to go into because I could write an essay on Ronan Lynch and how great a character he is.

Part of the reason for this would be Kavinsky.

Oh man, Kavinsky.

This kid.

This. Kid.

I suppose, in some way, he makes Ronan more likeable because Ronan is no longer the most crude and violent character in the novel. Oh no, Kavinsky wins that quite easily. This kid makes Ronan look like a tame little kitten in comparison. He’s this uncontrollable hurricane of a person, and you’re never sure what he’s going to do next. And he was so great to read about, because he was so unpredictable and dangerous and interesting. I guess that’s why his fate seemed sealed from the beginning.

Oh man, Kavinsky just can’t be described. You’ll have to read the book to see what I mean.

Another thing to mention: the scenes with Ronan and Noah are so sweet and adorable. They didn’t get much interaction in the first book (for good reason, since Noah was a bit preoccupied), but I really liked their friendship playing out in between Gansey and Adam’s phone calls.

Writing Style

I know I mention this in every Maggie Stiefvater review but I am completely falling in love with her writing style. It’s just so freaking gorgeous.

Quotes

  • Want and need were words that got eaten smaller and smaller: Freedom, autonomy, a perennial bank balance, a stainless-steel condo in a dustless city, a silky black car, to make out with Blue, eight hours of sleep, a cell phone, a bed, to kiss Blue just once, a blister-less heel, bacon for breakfast, to hold Blue’s hand, one hour of sleep, toilet paper, deodorant, a soda, a minute to close his eyes.
    What do you want, Adam?
    To feel awake when my eyes are open.
  • “All that mattered was that something had struck the match, and Gansey was burning.”
  • “Boys like him didn’t die; they got bronzed and installed outside public libraries.”
  • “Dying’s a boring side effect.”
  • “Because Niall Lynch was a forest fire, a rising sea, a car crash, a closing curtain, a blistering symphony, a catalyst with planets inside him.
    And he had given all of that to his middle son.”
  • “I am being perfectly f*cking civil.”

If I don’t stop adding quotes now, I never will.

Overall

5 shuriken stars, easily. A realistic fantasy story about five kids searching for a dead welsh king. What else could you ask for?

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3 responses to this post.

  1. I really liked this one, but like you said earlier, it was a little slow for me. It might just have been because I read it on a long car ride, but The Dream Thieves kind of dragged. I also wished it had focused on Blue a little more since I actually liked her character and really didn’t particularly like Ronan. I’m not trying to say that he wasn’t well written, but I found myself hating his character about halfway through. It also made me dislike Adam, which was sad because I really loved him in The Raven Boys. Anyways, I can’t disagree with your love of the writing style. Maggie Stiefvater is AMAZING. 🙂

    TRQ @ We’re All Mad Here

    Reply

    • It was a VERY Ronan-centric book, but I think the next ones will probably cover Adam and Noah in more detail. Yeah, I did notice it was pretty slow, but I think I was too busy drooling over the writing to really care.
      I just really love her writing style.
      I’ve always felt bad for not liking Adam that much. I think he’s great, but the way he treated Blue in this book did make me dislike him more than the other boys.
      And Noah is still my favourite. I mean Gansey is a very close second but I smile every time Noah appears.

      Reply

  2. You’ve explained why I liked The Dream Thieves better than I did! I can’t wait for the next one 🙂

    Reply

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