YMMV: The Raven Cycle

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Adam as of The Dream Thieves has been getting this. Is he struggling with the anger and emotional backlash from an abusive father and taking on Cabeswater, or is he a selfish, misogynistic tool with anger issues that are never dealt with? Also Blue: strong independent woman with a judgmental streak, or cliche, hypocritical author avatar for psuedo-feminist speech?
    • The author has stated that Blue's judgmental attitude is an intentional flaw, so her hypocrisy in some areas (such as claiming to be a feminist while being dismissive of her cousin Orla) is likely deliberate.
      • Given that Gansey views Orla in a similar way Blue does, it could be a way of the author showing that Blue's Not So Above It All and is more similar to the Aglionby boys than she'd like to admit.
      • It's also worth mentioning that the diving contest, one of the most notable scenes of Blue and Orla disagreeing, is actually from Gansey's point of view. So, was the scene actually misogynistic, or was it evidence of Gansey's misogyny and Unreliable Narrator qualities?
      • Blue's relationship with Orla is also contentious, as some fans claim it's evidence of Blue's internalized misogyny while others claim it's The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry and not a representation of Blue's relationship with women in general.
      • Is Blue actually unfair to Orla, or are her feelings about her cousin justified given that Orla is something of a bully to her?
    • Is The Gray Man largely another victim and just a weapon in Greenmantle's hands, or is he a willing murderer who's too easily forgiven by the narrative and the other characters?
    • Is Kavinsky unfairly vilified for his behavior, or was abusing Ronan and kidnapping Matthew enough of a Moral Event Horizon to justify his unsympathetic treatment by the narrative?
  • Awesome Moments: Ronan punching Adam's dad at the end of The Raven Boys.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Kavinsky's treatment of Ronan was explicitly written (and confirmed by Word of God) as an abusive relationship, including stalking, harassment, homophobic insults, manipulation, drugging him, violating his personal space, touching him without his consent, and kidnapping and trying to kill Matthew to punish Ronan for rejecting him. He also drugs his own mother without her knowledge, believes that "consent is overrated", and is the main villain of the second book. Nonetheless, he has a vocal fanbase who ignore, excuse, or outright romanticize his behavior. This is a controversial topic in the fandom, so let's leave it at that.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Kavinsky gained quite the following after The Dream Thieves.
    • A case of Draco in Leather Pants, given the fact that he, among other things, kidnapped Ronan's brother Matthew as a way to attract his attention.
    • Tad Carruthers is a better example of this trope, given that he's had one scene in the entire series and still managed to garner a fanbase.
    • Henry Cheng also qualifies, although he's not a wholly straight example as Maggie Stiefvater has confirmed on her blog that he'll play a major role in The Raven King.
    • The "dream pack" (Kavinsky's friends Prokopenko, Skov, Swan, and Jiang) are probably the strongest example—none of them even have any lines, and in fact the only things The Dream Thieves actually says about them are their names, what cars they race Ronan in, and that Prokopenko was killed and replaced by a Living Dream. In spite of that, they're almost as popular as the main characters and have entire fanfictions solely dedicated to them.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Let's just say lot of readers became big fans of Kavinsky after The Dream Thieves.
  • Funny Moments: "Gansey! This is the countryside. Where bees live!"
    • A lot of Gansey and Blue's early interactions fall under this category:
    Gansey: How much do you make in an hour? I'll take care of it. And I'll talk to your manager.
    Blue: ...I am not a prostitute.

    All this time she'd been wondering how Gansey might die and it turned out she was going to strangle him.
    • The Greenmantles may be nightmarishly awful human beings, but it's absolutely hilarious seeing them bicker, passive-aggressively snipe at each other, and eat cheese like any other married yuppies while facing down hitmen, committing murder, and searching for supernatural forces of evil.
    • Ronan throwing Noah out of a window for fun in The Dream Thieves.
  • Foe Yay: In spades with Ronan and Kavinsky. Not even spades, really. More like shovels.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: While it was a funny exchange in the first place, fans love to point out how much better this exchange becomes after reading The Dream Thieves.
    Gansey: From now on I need everyone to be straight with each other.
    Ronan: I'm always straight.
    Adam: Oh man, that's the biggest lie you've ever told.
  • Love Makes You Crazy: Kavinsky's... complicated feelings for Ronan seem to have a lot to do with his breakdown at the end of The Dream Thieves.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Ronan's nightmares themselves. Especially when crow monsters start coming out and trying to kill him.
    • In Blue Lily, Lily Blue, Adam finding a bloody copy of Ronan's dead body.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Tad Carruthers appears for only a few paragraphs, in which he acts completely insensitive to Adam's disability and past abuse (coming up on his deaf side and cuffing his head), makes homophobic comments at Adam's expense, and in general acts like a complete ass. He's so hilariously obnoxious that he and the scene became a fan favorite.