I’ve just finished reading the final novel in Maggie Steifvater’s Raven Cycle: ‘The Raven King’.
Ever since I discovered and fell in love with ‘Shiver’, I have stalked Steifvater’s website to see when her new releases were coming out. When I found out in 2012 she was coming to my country, Wales, I bullied a parent into giving me a lift to the Hay Festival so I could meet her. And when I found out her new series, ‘The Raven Cycle’, incorporated the Welsh legend Owain Glyndwr (Owen Glendower for those who don’t speak Welsh), I was a bubble of patriotic excitement. Considering most Americans don’t know Wales is a country and seem to think “Is it in England?” (NO) this was very exciting.
And now four years down the line and the last book came out in April. As sad as it is, I can’t wait to read her next stuff. Steifvater is always so original, and definitely one of my all time favourite authors.
‘The Raven King’ had her usual poetic, lyrical style. The Raven Cycle in general has always had this sense of mystery about it, which is aided by Steifvater’s ambiguous writing. I have always relished the beautiful prose of these books.
Though as much as I love love love Maggie Steifavter, I have mixed feelings about ‘The Raven King’. I was so excited for this final book to come out – I even splashed out £45 so I could buy a special hard copy from the USA which Stiefvater had doodled on for an indie book store: www.fountainbookstore.com
The prose was once again beautiful; the mystery was rife; the over all writing was absolutely poetic and lyrical. Stiefvater really built up the tension well throughout the novel. I was hooked, especially the further into the novel I got. However, now that I’ve finished it, I can’t help but feel that it was rather anti-climactic.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved it and thought it was a good end to the series, but it felt like there was something missing. It might just be I’d built it up so much in my head that I disappointed myself. It just didn’t really feel like the end.
It felt like Steifvater had spent all this effort building up the tension towards something huge, and softened the overall emotional hit. As much as deep down I loved the ending she gave the characters – one plot detail in particular left me fangirling – I think it would have had more of an emotional impact without the last two chapters and epilogue.
Though it it was still awesome and Steifvater did herself justice.
But then again, that’s all there is.