Review: The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

Genre: Paranormal Age Level: YA Series: The Raven Cycle #2
Genre: Paranormal
Age Level: YA
Series: The Raven Cycle #2

If you could steal things from dreams, what would you take? 

Ronan Lynch has secrets. Some he keeps from others. Some he keeps from himself.

One secret: Ronan can bring things out of his dreams. And sometimes hes’s not the only one who wants those things.

Ronan is one of the Raven Boys – a group of friends, practically brothers, searching fro a dead king named Glendower, who they think is hidden somewhere in the hills by their elite private school, Aglionby Academy. The path to Glendower has long lived as an undercurrent beneath town. But now, like Ronan’s secrets, it is beginning to rise to the surface – changing everything in its wake. Of the Raven Boys, Entertainment Weekly wrote, “Maggie Stiefvater’s can’t-put-it-down paranormal adventure will leave you clamoring for book two.” Now the second book is here, with the same wild imagination, dark romance, and heart-stopping twists that only Maggie Stiefvater can conjure.


“In that moment, Blue was a little in love with all of them.
Their magic. Their quest. Their awfulness and strangeness.
Her raven boys.”

Dream Thieves was one of my most anticipated sequels and though I did not love it as much as Raven Boys, I still love this book. Last year, I fell in love with the boys and their quest for Glendower. I fell in love with Henrietta and Blue’s crazy family. In love with Cabeswater and the magic. The writing and pacing. I loved every thing about Raven Boys, but I sadly cannot say the same for Dream Thieves. I desperately wanted to love this book as much, or more than I did the first one, but I couldn’t.

Maggie Steifvater is a brilliant writer. Her characterization is realistic to the point where it feels more like a window into the character’s lives than an actual story. You get to a point where you can easily imagine the characters lives beyond the story from their clothing to expressions to dialogue. And because you know them so well you become emotionally invested in them as well. You can’t help but care for all of the characters because you know them inside and out, their flaws and their moments of pride.

Both the topic matter and character focus takes a slight shift in Dream Theives. Instead of Gansey and his quest, we have Ronan and his dreams. And the problem is, for me at least, that part of the reason I loved Raven Boys so much was because of Gansey and his quest. I missed Gansey’s determination and resourcefulness and the exhilaration of the hunt.  I wanted to know more about Gansey’s home in Monmouth Manufacturing and his notebook. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy hearing about Ronan’s powers, I just wished I could have continued to follow the quest for Glendower, which gets put on a back burner.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have everything you desired? Or what it would be like to control your dreams completely? How about both? I’d never have thought of putting the two together but it makes a ton of sense when you think about it. Ronan’s ability also exists on a metaphorical level because the question of what happens to dreams when the dreamer dies is brought into question. The central mystery of the story surrounds this power and the extent to which it can help Ronan regain control over his life.

We get to find out about Ronan’s past and the person Gansey befriended. Hearing his backstory makes him more human and less psychotic than he first appears. He is flawed but strong and such a unique and interesting character. Ronan’s world is one of late night car races, battles with Kavinsky, crazy parties and even crazier family relationships. However, I was unable to truly connect with him and didn’t care much about all his antics.

I love Noah more than ever now; his quiet demeanor and easy going nature. Gansey is the same as ever – meaning both predictable and unpredictable at once. He is not a complicated character but there is always a bit of mystery that remains about him and he always ends up surprising me. Adam. Well. He is damaged, possibly beyond the point of repair. Somehow Gansey ends up farthest away from the ley line, not physically but mentally which is ironic because it is the sole focus of his life. Noah is directly linked to the line, Adam as well through his actions, Ronan through his dreams, while all Gansey has is his facts and equipment.

The boys’ relationships are strained and tested. Most of this conflict is left unresolved but handled extremely well. They do fight, they do get mad at each other, they do say horribly things to one another, but that’s what friendship is all about – helping one another through the bad times. And sometimes, the friendship breaks, though I hope it doesn’t happen to the boys because they are so much stronger together. 

Blue is as spunky as ever and along with Orla, Maura and Persephone she has got to have one of the craziest families ever, but we don’t see that much of her. In the few chapters dedicated to her, you get to dig a little deeper into her character and learn about her insecurities and ambitions. The whole ‘if you kiss your true love they will die’ thing is still there and I loved the small hint of romance. Then there’s the Grey Man who is a character I have never seen before, nor will likely see ever again and because of this he’s awesome. He adds mystery and dangers to the plot and unexpectedly romance.

The plot was great, but not as twisty as the first book. There were a few twists, but none of them were shocking. I wish there was less crazy teenage behaviour and more magical quests for I’d have loved the book so much more. Overall, The Dream Thieves was a solid sequel, and I highly recommend this series.

Other quotes:

“A secret is a strange thing.

There are three kinds of secrets. One is the sort everyone knows about, the sort you need at least two people for. One to keep it. One to never know. The second is a harder kind of secret: one you keep from yourself. Every day, thousands of confessions are kept from their would-be confessors, none of these people knowing that their never-admitted secrets all boil down to the same three words: I am afraid.

And then there is the third kind of secret, the most hidden kind. A secret no one knows about. Perhaps it was known once, but was taken to the grave. Or maybe it is a useless mystery, arcane and lonely, unfound because no one ever looked for it.

Sometimes, some rare times, a secret stays undiscovered because it is something too big for the mind to hold. It is too strange, too vast, too terrifying to contemplate.

All of us have secrets in our lives. We’re keepers or keptfrom, players or played. Secrets and cockroaches — that’s what will be left at the end of it all.”

dream 1dream 2

Have you read this book? What did you think? 


6 thoughts on “Review: The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

  1. I had the opposite reaction – I loved Dream Thieves even more than Raven Boys. I think it’s because I really grew to love Ronan. By the end of Dream Thieves, he was cemented as my favorite character.

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