We are-two crazy teenagers-Raven and Beez and on this blog we hope to enlighten you with our hilarious comments on the countless books we have read ;)

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Raven: The Raven Boys 

A novel by Maggie Stiefvater

Publication date: September 19th, 2012
Publisher: Scholastic
Pages: 421
Targeted Audience: Young Adult
Genre: Supernatural/Welsh Mythology/Fantasy

Blurb: Blue has spent the majority of her sixteen years being told that if she kisses her true love, he will die. When Blue meets Gansey’s spirit on the corpse road she knows there is only one reason why – either he is her true love or she has killed him.

Determined to find out the truth, Blue becomes involved with the Raven Boys, four boys from the local private school (lead by Gansey) who are on a quest to discover Glendower – a lost ancient Welsh King who is buried somewhere along the Virginia ley line. Whoever finds him will be granted a supernatural favour.

Never before has Blue felt such magic around her. But is Gansey her true love? She can’t imagine a time she would feel like that, and she is adamant not to be the reason for his death. Where will fate lead them?

{Blogger's Note: This book was read last year but I was so lazy and caught up with school that I never came around to writing a review... so here it is.} 

I had never heard about this author before or this series but when I came across this book in our school library I just had to read it. The blurb was so exciting and the cover was beautiful! (And as you know I'm a sucker for covers) As soon as I started this book I knew I was in love. So this is me, trying to do justice to this wonderful book.

The story is of a girl named Blue who comes from a clairvoyant family but she herself doesn't have any powers. She can't see the souls of the dead unlike her mother. So when she sees the spirit of a boy named Gansey at the crossroads on St. Marks Eve, Blue is a lot more than just surprised. 

"There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark's Eve, Blue. Either you're his true love...or you killed him."  

And hence begins the journey of Blue Sargent into the lives of the four boys from the school Aglionby- Adam Parrish, Richard Gansey, Ronan Lynch and Noah Czerny. They go on a personal quest to uncover the ancient, lost and buried, Welsh King, with the sole knowledge that he is somewhere along the Ley lines and whoever finds him will be granted a favour. 

You see how interesting this is?? Because it is absolutely the most beautifully written supernatural/fantasy novel in a long long time. Maggie Stiefvater's style of writing will sweep you away, her way of wording the surroundings will take you on a journey you never even imagined in your wildest dreams and her characters are bigger than life itself. I've never been in love with every character in a book but Maggie (She is my best mate) has made me fall in a deep abyss of torture because I want these characters to be real. I wish it so badly. If I ever find the buried Welsh King, you know what my wish will be. 

It is slightly slow-paced in the beginning but the characters and the mystery will keep you going forward.The book builds this beautiful atmosphere that makes you want to be one of the people in the books. Maggie's writing has an adult feel to it. The characters are not silly teenagers, they have this aura of purposefulness around them. 

Every character that was introduced in the book felt so real. I don't understand how she does it. It's not just the protagonists that are amazing, it is literally every bloody character. Maggie plays with dark magic... that is the only possible answer to how this book is so fantastic.

And the plot! It's so unique and amazing and so refreshingly new! After all the usual vampires, werewolves, fairies and magicians, Welsh mythology is just a wonderful change of atmosphere. She has explained everything about the ley lines and the Welsh King with just the right amount of mystery. 

As a last note, the last line of this book will haunt you forever.

A fabulous unicorn for a fabulous book

Lots of love and mystery,

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Raven: The One Plus One

A novel by Jojo Moyes

Publication date: July 1st, 2014
Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books
Pages: 537 (Paperback)
Target Audience: Adults
Genre: Women's fiction/Comedy/Family

Blurb: One single mum.
With two jobs and two children, Jess Thomas does her best day after day. But it's hard on your own. And sometimes you take risks you shouldn't. Because you have to...

One chaotic family.
Jess' gifted, quirky daughter Tanzie is brilliant with numbers, but without a helping hand she'll never get the chance to shine. And Nicky, Jess' teenage stepson, can't fight the bullies alone. Sometimes Jess feels like they're sinking...

One handsome stranger.
Into their lives comes Ed Nicholls, a man whose life is in chaos, and who is running from a deeply uncertain future. But he has time on his hands. He knows what it's like to be lonely. And he wants to help...

One unexpected love story.

I read this book because I had loved Me Before You and also because Beez recommended it to me. I must say that I loved it. I loved how "normal" and beautiful the characters were. I loved that it made me cry at the end.

At times the plot was very slow paced but the humor always made up for it. In fact, I think I will put up a few excerpts from the book at the end of this review.  

About the plot: We have Jess Thomas, a cleaner, bartender and mother of two children and a ridiculously big, slobbery, useless dog called Norman, who I loved. Tanzie, her little daughter is a math genius and Nicky on the other hand, is constantly bullied by the neighboring Fishers. He has lost all joy at such a young age and only finds comfort in gaming.

It all started when Tanzie, the little math genius was given a scholarship to go to a prestigious school. Despite getting an almost 90% scholarship, the registration fee, uniform and transport cost a huge fortune which Jess cannot afford. Her useless husband who lives with his mother and always makes excuses about why he isn't working is obviously of no help. 

When Tanzie's math teacher tells Jess about a math quiz in Scotland that is offering a grand cash prize for the winner, Jess is ecstatic. Finally, there is a chance that her little Tanzie might still make it into that school.
Meanwhile, Jess and her friend are cleaning rich people's houses and they come across a rude rich guy named Ed Nicholls who is already in some deep shit due to insider trading. 

One night, Jess finally decides to haul her kids and the dog in their fake Rolls Royce and drive to Scotland. Note: The car isn't insured, Jess hasn't driven in ages, Norman farts a lot and Nicky does pot. They were made to pull over by the police and 'rude-rich-guy' who just happened to drive by helped them out. All Ed Nicholls did was drop them off at home but he found himself wrapped up in the drama between Jess and Tanzie where Tanzie refused to get out of the car because she really wanted to go to that school. And that is how Ed Nicholls ended up driving this crazy family all the way to Scotland in his Audi at 40 miles per hour cause obviously Tanzie starts puking if they go faster.

 As you can see this book is bloody amazing! I loved every bit of it. There was not even one part that I can complain about. Not one... except that it was slow paced at times but like I said the humor made up for it. I was surprised with the amount of incidents that happened in this book but with a family like this it's completely possible.

"I don't understand how our family can basically do the right thing and yet always end up in the crap."

I could connect with Jess, a mother, even though I'm just an 18 year old idiot. I just felt her problems and I could sympathize with her. I loved all of the characters because I could connect with them and I am including the dog here. It's a fantastic read. The romance that develops between Jess and Ed is so beautiful.

I'll warn you that it does have a LOT of rom-com cliches but I haven't read cliches in a loooong time and so this felt nice. 

I would definitely recommend it if you are looking for some craziness and some sweet romance and a sad but beautiful ending. 

Now for the excerpts that I promised: 

'Are we staying here?' Tanzie said, rubbing at her eyes and looking around.
'Mr Nicholls is. We're going to stay in the car. It will be an adventure!' Jess said.
There was a brief silence.
'Yay.' said Nicky.
I realized something when Dad sat down and told me it was good to see me and his eyes got all moist: my dad might be an arse, but he's my arse, and he's the only arse I've got.

Lots of love and pasta,