Call Down the Hawk by Maggie Stiefvater (Dreamer Trilogy #1) / ★★★★★
“Do you understand? For you, reality is not an external condition. For you, reality is a decision.”
I loved every single part of this. This sequel series to The Raven Cycle is shaping up to be even more than I realized I needed from that universe. Not only was it a fun re-introduction to characters that I love, but it was an incredibly entertaining story all the way through.
I hesitate to compare it to The Raven Cycle, because this is completely different from the Raven Cycle. The mood, the atmosphere, the story, the characters- are incredibly different. I positively loved it. We meet lots of new characters, and revisit several characters from The Raven Cycle that really get their time to shine in this book that didn’t in The Raven Cycle (Declan. I’m talking about Declan). This book was more concrete, darker, and spooked me out in a genuine way that the Raven Cycle never achieved. I just loved it.
Call Down the Hawk had some great new characters. It’s the Ronan show now, and the cast is full of lots of new members. And wow, I loved them. We get the thieving and forging Jordan Hennessy and her girls, and Farooq-Lane and her deadly mission. Sometimes, it can be hard to accept new characters in a place we feel comfortable with the old ones, but these ones fit right in, and brought so much more. It wasn’t hard to grow invested in their personalities and motives as they unfolded. I loved stepping away from Ronan and discovering what they had to add to this universe. And I gotta say, it was great to have a healthy does of female characters. The only new character – and possibly aspect of this book – I wasn’t feeling so much was Byrde, but he feels a little ambiguous right now. Mostly, he just talked too much and didn’t seem to be saying a whole lot.
And old characters! The Lynches. I loved Ronan before, and Declan and Matthew I liked well enough, but – and I feel like I keep saying this – this book just added so much more that I didn’t realize I needed from them. Declan, especially. I have so much I want to say about Declan that would be way too spoilery for a review, but man. The growth and nuance in his character was fantastic. I love Declan. Returning to Ronan was wonderful, especially since his story was so obviously not over at the end of the Raven Cycle. I’m already loving the growth there, and I can’t wait to see where he ends up at the end of this series. And Matthew- Oh, Matthew.
As for the plot! It was full of intrigue and action and mystery that genuinely unnerved me. There are dreamers, and there are people hunting dreamers, and there are things in dreams that must be hunted. There wasn’t any point in this book that I got bored. It was entertaining, and fun, and funny, and dark. The only thing I’m sad about is that when I finished, I couldn’t move on to book 2.
I loved The Raven Cycle, but honestly, I think this is the story Maggie Stiefvater has really been meant to write. This story is her sweet spot, and it’s my favorite book by her so far.