Saturday, November 8, 2014

Blue Lily, Lily Blue - Maggie Stiefvater (+ Tarot Card Reveal: The Chariot)

[This is the third book of the series, so there may be spoilers for the previous ones. Go check out my reviews of The Raven Boys or The Dream Thieves instead, if you like.]

Blue Lily, Lily Blue book cover
Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Raven Cycle #3
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Publication Date: October 21, 2014
Source/Format: NetGalley (Thanks!) || e-galley
[I received this book for review. This is no way affects the opinions expressed in my review.]

There is danger in dreaming. But there is even more danger in waking up.

Blue Sargent has found things. For the first time in her life, she has friends she can trust, a group to which she can belong. The Raven Boys have taken her in as one of their own. Their problems have become hers, and her problems have become theirs.

The trick with found things though, is how easily they can be lost. (from Goodreads)


Every single time I indulge in a Maggie Stiefvater novel, I find myself content to linger among her words. There’s a special sort of satisfaction derived from reading one, savoring the twisty, fascinating combinations of plot and enjoying the time you spend with her colorful, memorable characters. Blue Lily, Lily Blue, the third novel of The Raven Cycle, is easily another feather in Stiefvater’s writer hat. Written with her signature wordiness and humor, Blue Lily, Lily Blue takes readers one step closer to the final act of the tale of Blue Sargent and her Raven Boys. 

Every novel in The Raven Cycle takes readers one step closer to the end of it all. Will Blue’s vision of Gansey’s death come to pass? Will Adam ever learn everything about his connection to Cabeswater? What will become of Ronan’s ability as a Greywaren? Will Noah be stuck forever? Will they find Glendower? These questions, and many more, twist around and around in Blue Lily, Lily Blue. If there’s one thing Stiefvater is skilled at, it’s leading her readers on a merry chase as she drops bits and pieces that fit together at the end with a surprising cohesiveness. 

What more can I say about Blue Lily, Lily Blue that I haven’t said previously about this series? The characters are alive, garish and flawed and passionate and real, and each one of the main gang needs a much needed hug or word of encouragement. Their relationships are developed perfectly, from friendship, to something a little more than friendship (note: I may or may not have swooned over the tiniest of gestures), to familial bonds. And Stiefvater moves each player around on her perfectly set stage, bringing to life this tale with every movement of choice. 

It’s so easy to slip back to Henrietta, so easy to get caught up with Blue and the Raven Boys, so easy to fall back in love with The Raven Cycle. Stiefvater has, again, managed to craft a complex, fascinating read that fits perfectly in with its predecessors. Blue Lily, Lily Blue is a solidly written third installment for the cycle, one that fills in the blanks but also leaves room for the gigantic sweeping climax that readers know is on the way – and I can’t wait to see what Stiefvater pulls out of her hat for that!

I'm really excited to be a part of the The Raven Cycle Tarot Tour

ABOUT THE TOUR
The tarot is a divination system that uses a deck of cards to gain insight. Most decks are comprised of 78 cards divided into the Major Arcana and Minor Arcana, with each card being symbolic of an energy or spiritual truth. The Major Arcana are known as the "trump cards" because they impart messages of greater weight and significance than the Minor Arcana.

The Raven Cycle Tarot Tour features the Major Arcana, with each stop on the tour revealing one of the 22 cards designed by Maggie Stiefvater, and will use that card to reveal the past, present and future of The Raven Cycle series. Here's a calendar featuring all the stops on the tour, and you can visit the This is Teen Pinterest page daily for each post!
Find out more here:

My card is:
represents victory and emotional control
PAST

- Ronan was formerly tormented by his ability to pull things out of dreams. It is through sheer willpower that Ronan finds some semblance of control over his abilities as Greywaren. He now has a connection to Cabeswater, an affinity that makes him ever more aware of what he is capable of.

- (for upright Chariot) Gansey has succeeded in getting closer and closer to his goal of finding Glendower, with the help of his friends. He has managed to surround himself with people that have various strengths, all drawn to him because of his confidence and control. While he occasionally doubts the task he is undertaking, he feels driven to keep going.

- (for downright Chariot) Blue starts out feeling tossed around in the sea of fate, particularly when it comes to her lack of any other ability than amplifying other people's psychic powers and the fact that she will kill her true love with a kiss. It appears that her life is not her own, which is always stifling.

PRESENT

- Adam is highly volatile, mostly because of his home situation and his own pride. Over the course of the story, he has slowly learned to control his emotions and come to terms with his aggressive impulses. While he's still prone to being prickly and proud (old habits die hard, of course), his transformation by the time of the third book is pretty solid.

- (for upright Chariot) Blue has managed to find that she does have the ability to control her abilities through sheer will. She can amplify energy and power, but she can also control the scope with which she chooses to amplify it. This control over what she can do proves to be very useful.

- (for downright Chariot) Noah's very existence is pretty much out of his hands. He requires a certain amount of energy, and doesn't always receive it. Plus, strange emotions take over him at times, causing him to lose his self-control.

FUTURE

Because the gang is fast gaining control over their abilities and emotions, whichever might require the most from them, they are managing to hone themselves to the point where they are like the finest of weapons. Smart, sharp and stubborn enough to continue in search of a sleeping king, they are going to emerge victorious in the end. The only question that remains is: is there someone else that might just lose control of themselves?

And now, it's time for a giveaway!
One winner is going to receive The Raven Boys, The Dream Thieves, and Blue Lily, Lily Blue, as well as a limited edition Maggie Stiefvater Major Arcana tarot deck!
(Prizes courtesy of Scholastic, open to US addresses only)


95 comments:

  1. One of my favorite things about TRC: the setting. Maggie's words just paint a picture and that picture is beautiful and can I just live in Henrietta please?

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  2. Favorite thing about The Raven Cycle is the characters and their friendship. I don't think there's a single other book out there with the sort of relationships we see in TRC, with the same complexities and depth of feeling - at least, for me anyway. It's so completely unique and I love it so much.

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  3. GANSEY. <3 <3 And I mean, everyone else too, I guess. :)

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  4. I've the characters, the world, the cars, the Welsh mythology... I love everything about this series!

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  5. I haven't read it yet, but everyone insists that I do! I hear so, so many amazing things that I just have to read it for myself!

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  6. After reading your review, I want to read the Raven Cycle Series!!

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  7. My favorite part was in The Dream Thieves when they had to go the lake and none off the guys would but blue and her cousin but she was just taking her time and Ronan didn't want to go because he didn't want to messy up his hair.

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  8. Christina R. in the rafflecopter


    LOVE her concepts! LOVE all her characters, that's why I want to read it.


    Just in case rafflecopter shows a location outside US, I'm doing a semester abroad and would use my regular US address :)


    thank you so very much :)

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  9. I love how reading the Raven Cycle is an ever-evolving journey. Each time more of the plot is revealed, I remember back to something at the beginning that seemed totally insignificant at the time, but NOW means a whole heck of a lot. I feel like I'm in time fluxes with the characters, and it makes me so happy

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  10. Super excited to enter this. I loved the Shiver trilogy, but never have been able to get into this series.

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  11. The magic, it actually feels possible when reading this series.

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  12. I haven't read this series yet, but I've heard great things about it. It sounds right up my alley, too.

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  13. I love all of Stiefvater's characters. In this books, I love Gansey and Blue the best, and of course Blue's quirky family.

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  14. It's so deep and layered and dreamy and amazing. I recently reread the first two, and they were even more amazing the second time. Reading BLLB now :)

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  15. I just love of different it is than books I've read. It's very interesting and cool and words cannot describe how much I love these books.

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  16. What I love about this series is that in each book, the characters take center stage. It's more about their character development than it is about the plot itself—but the plot keeps you reading, too!

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  17. I love how unique the series and the books are! :D

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  18. The thing that I love the most about TRC are the characters, for sure. Mostly because they're "real", I don't know how to put what I think into words, but I like how they all have realistic reactions,the fact that they're growing during the series and they have strengths and weakness and they're not stereotypical teenage characters as it usually happens in most of the book of this genre.

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  19. Great post! This is definitely one of my favorite series!

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  20. I think that Stiefvater's trademark is her incredibly realistic and compulsively likable characters- even though (actually because really) they have very many flaws and are not always very good people, the reader can connect with them and get drawn into their stories. The Raven Cycle has, in my opinion, the strongest cast of characters yet.

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  21. Let's see, my favorite thing about TRC... wow, it's so hard to pick. I would say the atmosphere. I know Maggie's very particular about her atmosphere, and it definitely shows. I clearly remember that first moment I knew I was hooked on these series -- in book 1 when they enter Cabeswater for the first time and learn that it will create things just because they want them. I got goosebumps all over! I thought, 'this is real magic.'

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  22. My favorite thing is Ronan. Well, he's my favorite character. My favorite other thing, is the tension between Blue and Gansey!

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  23. My favorite thing about The Raven Cycle is Maggie's humor and the subtle way she "moves around my mental furniture" so that I don't even know that i understand something until it hits me right in the face. In a good way.

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  24. My favorite thing about the series is Ronan and Noah. I also love (spoilers:) Piper. I'm really loving BLLB so much. With each book it gets better and better. I'll be sad when the series is over.

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  25. RONAN!! no but really it is just Maggie's beautiful prose. She is a unicorn!!

    ~Brittany T

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  26. I love all the characters and how they play off each other so WELL. And Of course I love Ronan, but I love Ronan with all the other characters :)

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  27. the characters are so full of depth and so realistic. It's rare to find a book where nearly every character is so well developed.

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  28. The Raven Cycle books are fantastic for
    lots of reasons! The writing style is uniquely its own, which makes it quite
    interesting to read. The story line is amazingly complex, yet understandable if
    one reads with care. Although the characters have extraordinary circumstances,
    and there is magic floating about, they are all still very relatable. Each
    character is completely and utterly human in the most honest sense of the word.
    None of them are perfect, no matter how much we might deny it, and that's what
    makes them such brilliant characters. When reading this series one actually
    stops and says ‘these kids are people with problems and imperfections just like
    everyone else.’ Overall I'd have to say my favorite character is Ronan, but I
    also love the others (main four boys is all I'll get into right now) for their
    own characteristics. I love Gansey because he is so complexly done and
    intriguing to look at because sometimes I'm not sure which face to see (if that
    is understandable). I love Noah because, let’s face it, he is absolutely adorable
    and needs lots of cuddles (I know that wasn't a very whimsical answer, so sue me.
    I think he's a cutie). I also love Adam because of his character development
    which has made me feel amazingly mixed feelings for him as the series has
    continued. Overall, this series is just tremendously
    well written, the plot is complexly delicious, and the characters are a
    wonderful bunch of relatable humans.

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  29. I love the raven cycle and all of maggies books (sans Ballad has thus far been the only one I haven't been able to get though perhaps I'll give it a third go after being around ronan so much) shes such an insperation and I love the boys so much <3
    I also love her artwork and winning the deck would be amazing to have some wonderful art in my hands

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  30. My favorite thing about the raven ccycle is the dynamic relationships between the characters.

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  31. My favorite thing about the Raven Cycle is the awesome characters!

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  32. I've heard nothing but good things about these books, I just haven't had the chance to pick them up. Definitely on my To Read list!

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  33. My favorite thing about the Raven Cycle is the bond between the main characters, and watching it become stronger and stronger with each passing book as more happens and both they and we the readers get to know each other better. And of course Maggie Stiefvater's writing is just fantastically evocative.

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  34. My favorite things about The Raven Cycle are Maggie Stiefvater's beautiful writing and all of her wonderful characters.

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  35. I love this series because of the beautiful writing and the magical atmosphere.

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  36. My favorite thing about The Raven Cycle is the wonderful way Maggie Stiefvater creates four main characters instead of one.

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  37. my favorite things about the raven cycle are the quality of writing, the way it's written with 4 main characters, and the central idea of cyclical myths.

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  38. My favorite thing about The Raven Cycle is Maggie Stiefvater's amazing writing style. Her voice and the language in her books is so incredibly unique that they could not have possibly been written by anyone else. I hate reading a book where every sentence sounds like I could've written it, her voice is distinctive and interesting.

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  39. My favorite thing about TRC ? I LOVE the relationships between the boys and Blue. How much they care about each other. And Maggie's writing.

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  40. so pretty! I think one of my favourite quotes from BLLB is "they were all a little bit in love with each other"; I think that's how friendships should be.

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  41. Every book I fall a little more in love with the Raven boys.

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  42. The relationship between the characters is my favorite thing. Maggie writes them so well and I just love it.

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  43. I love the sense of longing that is present troughout the story. They all want, are looking for something more. They all have a sense of wonder.

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  44. I love the relationships between the characters and the writing.

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  45. totally agree about the sense of longing and wonder!

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  46. I love Maggie's prose, she's so sharp.

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  47. I love reading what the group is going to run into next and where all the relationships are heading to next.

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  48. I think out of everything I love about the Raven Cycle... I love the characters the most. How they interact with one another and their surroundings. Watching their relationship(s) evolve and solidify... it's all so REAL. :)

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  49. I'm on board with the gushing about recurring characters however, to me Piper et al seemed to come a little out of left field. Thoughts?

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  50. Poor Noah! I love him so much, and I hope that in the last book something is figured out so he can at least stay visible and keep hanging out with the gang :)

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  51. Favorite part is the character development!

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  52. I love the way that the mythology is intertwined with the story.

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  53. Honestly I love everything about the books. The storyline is enthralling, the characters are believable, and every little detail just fits so perfectly into place!

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  54. Love the books, love the cards!

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  55. tbh i just love the teenage aspect of the novels... maggie got it so right

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  56. i love the broken-glass characters

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  57. I haven't read this series yet, mostly because I haven't been able to snag it at my local library and the local bookstore doesn't have the first book, just the second. (Typical, I know.) However, I started reading Maggie's books when I stumbled across The Scorpio Races, it was fantastic and has managed to claim a spot as one of my top 10 favorite books. Then I read the Shiver/Linger/Forever trilogy (still waiting for a copy of Sinner to get to me through the library) and I enjoyed them as well. It was in the midst of Shiver that I discovered The Raven Boys and I heard from friends that it has a plot that I will love so I am eager to see if they live up to the hype.

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  58. My favorite thing about the Raven Cycle is the fact that it's so brilliantly unique, and the characters are so realistic yet lovable.

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  59. My favorite things about the Raven Cycle are Maggie Stiefvater's writing, and the interactions between the characters.

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  60. My favorite thing about the Raven Cycle would be the writing! Maggie has such a way of wrapping you up into the story with her beautiful writing!

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  61. I adore this series. Maggie ' s writing is amazing and her art compliments the fiction so well.

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  62. I love Maggie's writing and Blue and her family. I love the dream sequences in Dream Theives and Ronan Lynch.

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  63. I love all of the magic behind it!!

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  64. My favorite things about the Raven Cycle are the characters, especially Ronan, Maggie's writing and how unique this series is.

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  65. I love the magic! I love the characters and the story line! It is so amazing! I can't really decide what my favorite thing is because it's all just amazing!

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  66. I had no idea what I was reading when I first picked up The Raven Boys, but I ended up loving the magic and the characters!
    I STILL need to read BLLB, but one of my favorite things ever, are the Noah & Blue moments. I adore Noah! .


    Thanks for the giveaway!

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  67. I love the magic and the characters,
    and especially that Cabeswater is sentient and has a tree language

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  68. My favorite thing is the characters

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  69. My favorite thing is all the things. I cannot pick a favorite thing. My favorite thing is reading anything Maggie Stiefvater writes.

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  70. I love how layered and complex the writing is. I truly do not think there is one single word in any of the books that is not tremendously important and relevant to the entire plot. I think that Maggie doesn't just write books, I think she very sneakily CRAFTS them- and I LOVE IT.

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  71. I love how the magic of the story is written as very fantastical and dreamy, yet at the same time, it is very real and grounded. Nothing is impossible in the search for Glendower but the magic doesn't act as an easy shortcut.

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  72. I love Maggie's writing--the natural wit, the subtle humor, the dry sarcasm, and the magical feel of the way all three books are written. Then I also love the characters and their interaction and I especially love the friendship between the boys and Blue.

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  73. What is there *not* to like about the Raven Cycle? I love the writing, the depth of the characters, the fact that the story keeps me on my toes. I can read it again and again and still get something new out of it.

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  74. That it's inspired by the Dark is Rising Sequence. And Ronan & Adam. Naturally.

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  75. I love it all, but I'd highlight the depth and complexity of the writing... I've reread most of her books many times and always find new layers-- foreshadowing, clever metaphors, links between themes or plotlines... her writing is just smart, plain and simple.

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  76. The characters are my favorite, Maggie always writes such interesting characters!

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  77. I've only read the first one, but I love the supernatural elements in that one.

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  78. LOVE & care for all of the characters in The Raven Cycle

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  79. I love the Shiver trilogy and have read the first book of the Raven Cycle. I'm looking forward to reading the rest!

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  80. I have this on my kindle. I can't wait to read it!

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  81. I have not read the books yet. I plan on reading them. The summary and reviews make me want to read these books so bad.

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  82. I love how different the whole series is and Maggie's characterizations are inspiring and an education in character writing. RAVEN CYCLE is a nice break from the pieces about dystopian worlds and love triangles and such in that we're focused on friendships and a key adventure and paths that'll affect everyone involved. Bravo, Maggie!

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  83. The thing I love most about this series is the characters. They are just so full and rich and beautiful. This series is definitely in my top 5 favorite - which is a big deal considering how many series are competing. I really want to reread them soon and probably will.

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  84. The thing I love most about this series is that Maggie perfectly captures the element of real emotion and the fine details of life and combines them into a world of fiction and magic. It is haunting, dark and yet can connect with you in such a way that it surpasses almost every series I have ever read. Maggie's work has always inspired me and it is exactly why she is my favorite modern author.

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  85. My favorite thing about this series is the characters. Always, always the characters.

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  86. I read this nearly a year ago and it still stands as one of my most favorite series ever. It doesn't seem to get nearly enough attention so I love the passion behind your review! I hope more readers find this one and see the same amazing story in it.

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  87. My favorite thing would have to be the writing! It really just ties in my love of the characters, plot, setting, basically everything, and it's all due to Maggie's wonderful writing!

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  88. My favorite part of the series are the characters, they all have such amazing personalities.

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  89. I love so much about this series that it is hard to narrow it down. I could say the writing, because no one does prose like Maggie Stiefvater. However, I think the GROUP is my favorite part. I love the part in Blue Lily when Orla is talking about Blue being in love, and instead we see that everyone in the group is a little in love with one another. The dynamics and loyalty - it just makes me so happy and, I suspect, before this is over will also break my heart.

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  90. I just love how weird this series is, how unique the concepts and characters and style is.

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  91. I love the relationships in this series. They are complicated and strong, even at their weakest points.
    I love every single characters because of their faults and not because of strengths. And I love that I can find a piece of myself in everyone of them.

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  92. I am constantly stunned at how talented Maggie Stiefvater is in all branches of the arts: music, drawing, writing, fast cars (lol).
    With each card reveal, I want this deck more and more. I hope they will become commercially available if I am not the winner.

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  93. I love how Maggie weaves the fantasy in with real life drama. She easy goes back and forth between the two in the books and creates a world where the fantasy just naturally fits.

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  94. My favorite thing is the style and skill in which Maggie writes the story. Totally unique and atmospheric. You get sucked in to every character's mind, to a point of no return. I haven't read any other series like it! I can re-read it and discover new things every time.

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  95. THE SHIPS, ALEXA, THE SHIPS. (Also, the prose, but, SHIPS mostly.)

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Thanks for leaving a comment! I love seeing what you have to say, and will try to reply (here or on Twitter) as soon as I can :)

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