It’s amazing how much perspectives can shift upon a re-read. When I first picked up The Raven Boys nearly two years ago, I listened to the audiobook. I loved Will Patton’s narration but had a few reservations about the book itself. Recently, I sat down with the hardcover edition, post-its and pencil in hand, determined to annotate as I revisited The Raven Boys. There were so many things I newly discovered, I grew to love it a whole lot more.
Right from the first beginning we’re told that the main character, Clementine is dead. We relive her life through her diary entries. It was evident right from the start that Blue is the Warmest Color is a sad book but it wasn’t cheapened by shocking anyone with Clementine’s death. No, this graphic novel focused on the journey. In doing so, it shed light on her hopes and dreams, and struggles and despair.
Going into The Rest of Us Just Live Here I felt very disconcerted. The main text reads like a contemporary book but each chapter starts with insights on the Chosen Ones and the gods above. There are however overlaps that can be seen when the paranormal events have an impact on the ordinary people. This makes the setting a very strange yet familiar one.
One of the books I most looked forward to in 2014 was Belzhar. When I first saw the US cover, I was taken in and when I read the short description, I was sold. I wanted to read the book. It didn’t matter to me that I had never read a word of Sylvia Plath because I had every intention to. (For the record, I read The Bell Jar before Belzhar to preempt spoilers. Hah.) The hook for me was the exploration of mental stability.