UPDATE: If you want an autographed copy of The Dream Thieves, buy it here before September. Her other books are available there, too!
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Psychic's daughter Blue has always known that when she kisses her true love he will die, but so far she's avoided temptation - until she finds herself entangled with the "raven boys" whose quest may bring more than one prophecy to pass.
The so-called "raven boys" attend an elite boarding school where the power brokers of America send their scions. Except their leader, Gansey, is unhappy with his charmed life, and wants to prove that he is worth more than his trust fund. He ropes his friends - and eventually Blue - into a quest for a mythical king whose resting place may lie along lines of spiritual power in the heart of Blue's hometown.
Blue lives in a house full of women, and she is the only non-psychic among them. Instead, her gift is to focus the power of others. Similarly, she acts as a catalyst for the lives of the raven boys. Her presence makes things happen quickly. Blue is drawn deeper into their tight-knit group by her knowledge that in one year, Gansey will die.
Stiefvater proves herself skilled at orchestrating scenes with multiple characters, each person hiding and revealing themselves in turn. She can also create with moments that are truly chilling: even with glimpses into the future we receive, the course of the next two books is anyone's guess. (The second book of The Raven Cycle, The Dream Thieves, comes out this fall and it'll be high on my list!) The last line of the book made me go "What?!" and wish for the next novel, immediately. It's definitely a book that needs to be understood in context of its companion novels.
Stiefvater is the author of other popular series, including the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races. Now's a good time for fans of paranormal YA. For your next read until The Raven Boys' sequel, I suggest Libba Bray's A Great and Terrible Beauty for the perfect combination of paranormal and boarding school elements.