The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater
Maggie Stiefvater is one of my favorite YA authors for lots of reasons. She blends the real and the fantastic in a way that makes you believe that amazing things are hiding beneath the surface of your own life too. She can write a love scene with no kissing that’s as hot as any erotica, because she fills every word with longing, and with the knowledge that love is forbidden and life is short. The Dream Thieves is the second in a series, and it builds on the first book and takes it to a new level. We learn a lot more about Ronan, the broody guy who gets into a lot of fights and has a raven for a pet. There’s also a hit man, some really scary nightmare creatures, and 100 white Mitsubishis.
Stiefvater is one of very few YA writers I can think of who even mentions class issues in her novels. In this series class issues reflect the most pressing problems of today: the extreme differences between the super-rich and everyone else. In this book we meet Gansey’s mother, who’s running for office, at an opulent party for donors. Adam, the scholarship student, repeatedly refuses his friend’s financial help and has a bit of a meltdown. Golden boy Gansey actually looks outside himself to see that poverty (and to him middle/lower middle class = poverty) does not, in fact, cause moral deficiencies. A few of the richest characters are revealed to have ‘earned’ their money through literally dreaming it into existence.
I heard that there’s a movie deal on these books, and I’m glad. I can’t wait to read the final novel!