Happy One Year Anniversary to The Raven King and Maggie Stiefvater!

April 2016 was our most successful month page views wise.  We had 589 views, which beat our previous record of 552 in December 2015. It made me wonder what were we writing about a year ago to get so much traffic.  Well, The Raven Cycle and Maggie Stiefvater.  It’s hard to believe that the The Raven King came out a year ago.  That it has been a year since we found out if Gansey, Blue, Ronan and Adam would find the sleeping Welsh King and If Blue and Gansey would kiss and if Gansey would die.  Those mysteries have been solved.  Thankfully, we know that we haven’t read the last of the Gang as Maggie is working on a trilogy about Ronan. Whee!!!

And we have another Maggie book coming in October.  So we have a lot to look forward to but let’s take a moment, in honor of the 1 year anniversary of the release of The Raven King and the end of the The Raven Cycle, to look at everything we have ever written about the series.

What I’m Listening to Now: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Public Service Announcement

What I’m Thankful for

Cover Reveal: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

Books that Rocked My Face off, Part two

Let’s Do Some Reading: Goals for 2015

Cover Reveal: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

Discussion Posts: Re-reading series before the new installment comes out

Books that Rocked My Face Off in 2015

What I Can’t Wait to Read in 2016

First Listen of The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

Countdown to The Raven King!

What I’m ReReading Now: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Observations on The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Observations on The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

Observations on Blue Lily Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

My To-Read List for the next month or so

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 1

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 2

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 3

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 4

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 5

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 6

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 7

What I’m Reading Now: THE RAVEN KING BY MAGGIE STIEFVATER

What I’m Listening to: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

Review: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

Our Top 5 Posts of 2016

My Top 10 Books I read in 2016

Top Eight for 2016!

Th Raven Cycle as a TV Show Yes Please

Th Raven Cycle as a TV Show Yes Please

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SQUEE!  This is the most fantastic news!  I’m so happy that it’s being adapted for TV and not a movie because  a 2 hour movie could never hold the likes of  Gansey, Blue, Ronan, Adam and Noah.  This would be perfect for as a Netflix show or even maybe AMC.  I just hope they do it justice.

Thanks to Library-Mermaid on Tumblr for the gif.

In Memoriam of all the Series that Ended in 2016

In the tradition of award shows every way, we at Stacks would like to recognized those series that are no longer with us.  They have ended.  They and solved all their mysteries and tied up any loose ends.  We were said to see them go but they will always be remembered for the joy that brought to our lives.

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My Top 10 Books I read in 2016

I will say this about 2016, I read a lot of good books this year.  It was hard to narrow it down to just 10.  So without further ado and in no particular order.

  1. hammer-of-thorHammer of Thor by Rick Riordan – So it was hard to pick between this one and his other book Riordan wrote, The Hidden Oracle, but I choose this one because of the characters.  I love that Rick has added diverse characters to his worlds.  Not to mention his characters get sassier with every book.
  2. A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir – A cross between historical fiction and dystopian novel.  It’s quite a thrill ride and it left a real cliffhanger as to how the series is going to end.
  3. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas – After a so-so first book this one was a real game changer for the series as a hole.  It delved into matters trauma and emotional abuse but still keep the story flowing.
  4. The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater – It’s Maggie and It’s Gansey, Blue, Ronan, Adam and Noah.  It’s the perfect ending to a perfect story.
  5. Half LostHalf Lost by Sally Green – It was as beautiful as it was heartbreaking.  Nate didn’t have an easy life and nothing about this book was easy too.  It was very true to life.  It doesn’t always turn out the way you expect and in war there are always painful loses.
  6. Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard – Now this is a fun series.  It’s a dystopian fantasy with X-Men qualities.  Mare is not perfect.  She’s complicated and conflicting but she means well and the writing only gets better with each book.
  7. Pyromantic by Lish McBride – This book doesn’t actually come out until next year so I’ll wait to tell you about it but let’s just say you are going to love it.
  8. Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo – It’s a crime caper and a fantasy.  You root for the the thieves and the con men to win.  It’s wonderful.
  9. Ms. Marvel No Normal by G. Willow Wilson – likable and charming, Kamala Khan is worthy addition to the Avengers.  She proves that it doesn’t matter where you come from and what you believe, you can still be a superhero.
  10. The Midnight Star by Marie Lu – Another great ending to well thought out series.  I may have qualms about who the real villain was but I think it was heartbreaking as it was beautiful.

Our Top 5 Posts of 2016

2016 was a mix bag of a year but let’s focus on the positives,shall we?   This year was a banner year for us at Stacks.  In the last weeks of the year we are going to take a look back of some of our highlights.  So here are our most viewed posts of the past year.

  1. Review: Half Lost by Sally Green Who knew this was going to be such big crowd pleaser?  This book really broke my heart.  The ending was so beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time.  I originally reviewed this back in January but we are still getting views.
  2. Preview of the Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan So this post is originally from 2015 but the excitement over Riordan’s new book carried over into 2016.  It’s views more then doubled my review of the book.  I’ll try not to read too much into that.  😉
  3. Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 1 My excitement over the The Raven King was subtle.  Okay, not so subtle.  This was the first of a week long celebration of Stiefvater’s The Raven Cycle series.  I examined different aspects of the series and tried to predict what was going to happen in the final book.
  4. Review: Endure by Sara B. Larson Another surprising addition to the list.  This review from January about the final book in Sara B. Larson’s book was a pretty good series.
  5. Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 2  and rounding out our top five is Part 2 of my The Raven Cycle love fest.

2016

Review: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

the raven kingOkay I’ve been trying to write this review for days now.  How do I put into words how much I loved this book? How much I loved this series? And how much I’m going to miss these characters? I’m not sure I can. On so many levels this was everything I wanted it to be. It was atmospheric. It was at times intense. It was romantic. It was creepy. It was surprising. It had happy endings and ambiguous endings. It answered a lot questions but asked some more. In true Maggie fashion, she closed the door on some story lines but kept others open to interpretation.  It had a little bit of everything.  I was left wanting more because I am not ready to say goodbye but at the same time I’m satisfied with how she ended it.  It’s been over a week since I finished it and I still have so many Feels!  I guess I’m not going to write about the plot or the characters because I written about both many times and I don’t want to spoil anything but I will say this. This series should be read by all.  Not just by Teens or adults who read YA.  It should be read by fantasy lovers even though it’s not a straight fantasy.  It should be read by literary fans even though many might turn their nose up to that.  It should be read by history lovers, especially those Anglo Saxon fans. It should just be read!.  So that’s it.  I say see you later to Blue, Gansey, Ronan, Adam, Noah, Maura, Calla, Mr. Gray, Henry and Persephone.  This may be our last visit but here’s hoping we will meet again some time down the road.

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 7

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Tomorrow’s the day!  The Raven King is finally going to be out in the world and all of our questions will be answered.  It’s exciting but also little sad.  I really don’t want this series to end. I’m not sure I’m ready to say goodbye to Blue, Gansey, Ronan, Adam, Noah, Maura, Calla,  The Gray Man or even Orla.  All things must come to an end so how will it end?  How will Gansey die and how long will he be dead?  Will one of the favors they ask of Glendower be to bring him back? What about Noah, will he still be dead after this?  Will any of them get their happily ever after?  Will Ronan live out his life at the Barns with his brother and Mother?  Will Adam leave Virginia behind?  Will Blue go off to college and travel the world?  Will Glendower be everything they were hoping he would be?

Here’s what I think.  I don’t think that Gansey will stay dead for very long.  I think he will die and Noah will sacrifice his chance to live again for Gansey’s chance to live again.  Finally allowing him to cross over to where you go after you die.  I’m not sure how the third sleeper will play out but I think that they will have to wake Glendower to help fight it.  I do think Adam and Blue will go to college out of state but will always come back every summer to hang with Gansey and Ronan who will want to stay.  That’s what I think but who knows.  I’m probably completely off.  The Good news is that it’s only one more day until we’ll find out.

Part 1: The Role of New characters

Part 2: The Role of Characters who are not new but new to Henrietta..

Part 3: The Role of Persephone’s death.

Part 4: The Role of Ronan

Part 5: The Role of Gansey

Part 6:The Role of Love and Relationships

Discussion: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater Part 6

the raven kingLet’s talk relationships.  Honestly I think the friendships are the most important relationships in the series but I think most people focus on the romantic relationships.  There is Bluesey aka Blue and Gansey and Adnan (or is Rodam? I’m not really sure what their ship is called) aka Ronan and Adam.  Obviously, Blue and Gansey are a go.  We started to see their relationship bloom in Blue Lily Lily Blue.  They tried to keep their attraction a secret as they didn’t want to upset Adam and honestly that was good call.  Though, I wonder how hurt Adam is really going to be knowing that they can never kiss.  I guess it will still hurt anyway that she would chose Gansey over him.  I think now he can handle it as he seems to be in a much better head space than where he was at the beginning of the book.  We also know that Blue and Gansey will kiss.  We knew that was going to happen since The Raven Boys. We got a glimpse of what it’s going to be like when Blue stepped in the tree and saw them kiss.  She saw how Gansey knew what kissing Blue would mean but wanting to anyway.  I think this goes back to what I said yesterday.  Gansey knows he’s going to die, he might as well go out doing what he wants.  But when will it happen?  Early on in the book? Right before they find Glendower?  Will they only get that one kiss?  Will it end in tears? I’m pretty sure it’s a yes to those last questions.

What about Ronan and Adam?  We know that Ronan is gay.  I do love his coming out or really his lack of one.  I like that Maggie wrote his sexual preference the way she wrote the others.  It didn’t need to be a big reveal because if you were following his arc, you would have seen his preference.  Adam on the other hand is not so clear cut.  He was fully infatuated with Blue in The Raven Boys.  I think in The Dream Thieves it was more just him wanting to be loved.  Wanting to be wanted and he thought Blue was the person who was going to be that for him.  By the end, they sort of realized that wasn’t going to happen.  Things were a little awkward in Blue Lily Lily Blue but I think by the end they found a balance between the two of them.  Adam also starts to suspect Ronan’s feelings for him and is flattered.  Ronan is a rich, attractive guy.  He could have anyone he wanted so for him to want Adam, made him special.  Made him feel wanted. Which is what Adam wants.  I think Ronan has hope that Adam will reciprocate his feelings.  He shows that in the hand cream he gives Adam and the trust he has in Adam when he tells him about Matthew.  He shows Adam his vulnerability, which is not easy for someone like Ronan.  Now, Maggie has said on twitter that she wrote the two kisses that fans have been waiting for.  I can only assume she means these two since the only other couple is Maura and the Gray Man and they have already kissed. So how will Ronan and Adam’s kiss go down?  Will it be a moment of shared grief over loss?  A moment of curiosity on one or both of their parts? Will it be the beginning of a relationship or the realization that they are just friends?  All we do know is that they are going to be a lot more kissing in this book then probably in all the other books combined.

Part 1: The Role of New characters

Part 2: The Role of Characters who are not new but new to Henrietta..

Part 3: The Role of Persephone’s death.

Part 4: The Role of Ronan

Part 5: The Role of Gansey