The Raven Cycle Reread: 1.24


This chapter is short but my fingers are still tired after typing out the summary of the last one so I’m going to make the summary even shorter. We skip a lot of stuff: the deciding to leave the forest, the leaving of the forest, the getting back to Helen. When we pick the story back up the siblings are arguing the helicopter, because Helen was mad the excursion took them seven minutes and Gansey’s stance is that she should be happy the ley line bent time, because they were exploring for over half an hour. Everyone else takes off their headphones. I wish I could, too.

We take some time to briefly explain why the ley line would be playing with time. Is there precedent? How does that even work? What the hell was that thing in the tree? The answers turn out to be yes, there is precedent (specifically in Scotland, where it’s called being “pixie-led”), the ley line plays with time because of “energy” and the thing in the tree was, um, really something, wasn’t it? Gansey thinks it was Glendower but Glendower is a sleeping person and not a rotting psychic tree. Just because they’re both on the ley line doesn’t mean it has to be him, you know? There’s probably plenty of other magical beings, the Welsh don’t have a monopoly on that particular market.

But the boy’s excited, so I’m going to let him have it. Especially since this causes him to demand they all get in the car so they can go hang out somewhere, and while Blue is demanding they get her home sometime “reasonable” (whatever that means), he comes up with THE SINGLE GREATEST NICKNAME IN THE WHOLE SERIES. In all caps so you PAY ATTENTION because this part is AN AMAZING WAY TO SHOW A BUDDING FRIENDSHIP.

Gansey asks if Blue is a nickname. She responds and he spends some time ruminating on how right she is, and on how she completes their group and how empty his life would be without her. Classic romantic stuff. And then…

He says, “I’ve always liked the named Jane.”

Blue’s eyes widened. “Ja—what? Oh! No, no. You can’t just go around naming people other things because you don’t like their real name.”

But that’s exactly what he does and that’s exactly why we love him.

They all go to gelato. They are loud, obnoxious teenagers. I was already in love with them as individuals, but this? This is the moment I fall in love with them as a group.

They drove to Harry’s and parked the Camaro next to an Audi and a Lexus and Gansey ordered flavors of gelato until the table wouldn’t hold any more bowls and Ronan convinced the staff to turn the overhead speakers up and Blue laughed for the first time at something Gansey said and they were loud and triumphant and kings of Henrietta, because they’d found the ley line and because it was starting, it was starting.

Thoughts and Feelings:

I mean, come on. That last paragraph. That’s full on poetry there, you can’t tell me it’s not. It’s like a punch to the face to every English teacher I’ve ever had who was like “that sentence is a run on” and then when I replied with “it’s creative license” they told me “grammar is more important.” No it’s not, you liars! I wish I had kept a printed out copy of this quote in my back pocket so I could whip it out and shove it in their face and prove them wrong. This is the way sentences were made to be written! Far too long and emotionally devastating!!

Frankly, I loved every word I read in this chapter. It’s short and sweet in every sense of the phrase, what with Gansey calling Blue Jane (on par with him calling her “sweetie” or “lovebug” or “you asshole,” frankly) and the references to Scottish fairy stories and Blue making fun of the Pig because it always smells like gasoline.

But mostly because: it is starting. It. Is. Starting.

Best character moment:

He smiled tolerantly at her. Rubbing his smooth chin with his recently assassinated chin hairs, he studied her. She barely came up to Ronan’s shoulder, but she was every bit as big as he, every bit as present.

Best turn of phrase:

They were loud and triumphant and kings of Henrietta, because they’d found the ley line and because it was starting, it was starting.

Action: We leave the helicopter behind but we gain a sense of group identity, which is honestly a huge plot development that should not go unnoticed. 8/10

Magic: Not much tree magic, but, I mean… wasn’t the real magic the friends we found along the way? 10/10

Comic relief: This chapter was hilarious. Blue begs to differ, to which we say: “who’s Blue? I only know Jane.” 11/10

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