This is one of three books I chose to read after doing the Try a Chapter tag. Blue Lily, Lily Blue is the third installment in a young-adult fantasy series by Maggie Stiefvater called Raven Boys, which is about a group of teenagers searching for the grave of an ancient Welsh king. I read the first book, The Raven Boys, last year as part of a readathon and enjoyed it. I read the second novel, The Dream Thieves, earlier this year but didn’t like it as much as I did the first. Blue Lily, Lily Blue isn’t as great as the first but it made me curious about how the story will end.
The search for Glendower continues. I have to say that because, to me, the search paused in The Dream Thieves so Ronan could deal with his dreaming abilities and Adam could show that he’s an ass sometimes.
But in this installment, Ronan and Adam try to put a lid on their shit and not blow up all the time. Mallory hops the pond and joins Gansey and his friends on their search and the psychics try to be more helpful though their hints are still vague.
Noah still hangs around, but is a little creepy now, and Blue is trying navigate life as best she can despite her mom’s disappearance. Blue and the boys do succeed in waking someone, but the new villains also succeed in doing so too and now it’s anyone’s guess what the hell will happen in the end.
I’m not great at summing up stories. I would have included the Goodreads summary, which is the same as what’s printed on the book’s cover, but it doesn’t say much and it confuses me. There will be minor spoilers in this section so jump to the Overall section below if you’d rather avoid them.
Like the previous two books, this one also has a slow build up at the beginning. It took a while for me to get into the story though once the pace increased, I still wasn’t hooked. My interest in the story decreased after reading The Dream Thieves because it didn’t have the magical atmosphere that initially captivated me. Neither was I interested in reading about Ronan or Adam or Blue. The characters really annoyed me in that installment.
However, the story gets back its mystical atmosphere in this installment and the eerie undertone that’s hinted at in the first book is kicked up a notch in this one, especially when Noah acts more like a ghost than a human. We also get a stronger impression that magic and supernatural occurrences are common in Henrietta, Va. I both would like to visit there and stay far away from it. The psychics at 300 Fox Way add to this feeling and I like that they are featured more in this story. I also like that in almost every book, we discover someone new who happens to live at 300 Fox Way. How many rooms does the place have?
The story didn’t leave much of an impression this time and neither did the writing, which seems to be in two different styles. At times, it was written in the descriptive prose I love that’s seen in the first novel, and other times it had a sort of folksy* style that wasn’t apparent in the first two books. It’s probably only me who thinks this though and maybe it has more to do with my internal reading voice than Stiefvater switching writing styles (I hope so), but I didn’t like it.
I also didn’t like the new villains. Well, they aren’t exactly new. Greenmantle and his wife decided to make an appearance but they weren’t impressive and didn’t seem dangerous or capable of doing anything. Well, that’s a bit unfair to say of his wife but even so, they seem more like caricatures of evil villains than believable threats, which disappointed me. I was hoping for a villain that’s not so easy to thwart. Also, Neeve’s random appearance confused me. Was that where she was this whole time??
Though Blue annoyed me in the first two books, I started to like her more in this one. I also like how her relationship with Gansey is developing and also her friendship with Ronan. I do wonder what will happen when Adam finds out about Blue and Gansey. I don’t think it will pretty. Is that when Gansey dies?
The series seems to have lost the oomph that hooked me when I read the first book, but I am curious to see how it will wrap up in the end.