The tarot is a divination system that uses a deck of cards to gain insight. Most decks are comprised of 78 cards divided into the Major Arcana and Minor Arcana, with each card being symbolic of an energy or spiritual truth. The Major Arcana are known as the “trump cards” because they impart messages of greater weight and significance than the Minor Arcana.
The Raven Cycle Tarot Tour features the Major Arcana, with each stop on the tour revealing one of the 22 cards as designed by Maggie Stiefvater, and will use that card to reveal the past, present and future of The Raven Cycle series.
You can find the full schedule (November 1st-22nd) and list of participating blogs below, be sure and check them all out for more tarot cards, readings, and chances to win!
And now, I give you Death:
Unsurprisingly, the Death card is "the most feared and misunderstood of all the cards in the Tarot deck". While that aspect of it is not part of the meaning of the card itself, I think the concept of misperception and misunderstanding plays a critical role in The Raven Boys.
Upon cracking the spine, we are almost immediately made aware of a prophecy featuring Blue and Gansey, one that foretells that she is either destined to fall in love with him or to be the one who kills him. For much of the book then we can't help but wonder about the very nature of prophetic statements, so seemingly telling but also vague and open-ended at the same time, inspiring fear and anxiety due to the sheer number of possible interpretations. Much as Death is misunderstood, telling not of literal impending death at all but rather change and transition, the prophecy concerning Blue and Gansey is feared for all its unknowns.
"Death is symbolic of the ending of a major phase or aspect of your life that may bring about the beginning of something far more valuable and important."
Each of the characters in the Raven Cycle series undergo a number of changes, some minor and others major, as the series continues, trying to come to terms with their various abilities (particularly Ronan and his highly unusual gift of being able to bring pieces of dreams into reality) while also treading lightly as the nature of the friendships within the group continues to transition with Blue in the mix.
"Death is an indication that you need to learn to let go of unhealthy attachments in your life to pave the way to a fuller, more fulfilled life of deeper meaning and significance. Death teaches you to let go of outworn and outgrown ways of life and move forward."
The four boys in particular are likely to have this card laid in front of them should they sit down down to a reading, each of them with a past they're struggling to overcome in the hopes of emerging stronger on the other side. Gansey constantly battles his privileged upbringing and the differences between his life and those of his closest friends, Adam's abusive home life and past affects his every decision and action in the present, Ronan's history has shaped him into someone dark and defiant who dares the world to come at him, and Noah is perhaps in a more constant state of flux than any of the other three.
"You may be reluctant to let go of the past or you may not know how to make the change you need. You are still carrying harmful aspects from the past that may interfere with the opportunity you have for a new beginning. You are refusing to accept change and you are resisting any element of change that may arise in your life. As a result, life has stagnated and you are feeling ‘stuck’ in limbo."
The Death card has a lot of intriguing implications for the next book in the series, forcing us to ask ourselves difficult questions about each and every character. Will they be able to overcome the the hardships or horrors of their pasts, freeing themselves from baggage that prevents them from seeing clearly? Will the misunderstanding that goes hand in hand with this card in particular be indicative of how Blue and Gansey move forward? Will they allow themselves to be caged by the words of a prophecy, or will they fight to give what has been foretold a meaning of their own choosing?
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Mystery, Romance and the supernatural combine in this series from #1 New York Times bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater.
Book 1: The Raven Boys
Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue never sees them--until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks to her. His name is Gansey, a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.
But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can't entirely explain. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul whose emotions range from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher who notices many things but says very little.
For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She doesn't believe in true love, and never thought this would be a problem. But as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she's not so sure anymore.
Book 2: The Dream Thieves
Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same. Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life. Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after....
Book 3: Blue Lily, Lily Blue
There is danger in dreaming. But there is even more danger in waking up.
Blue Sargent has found things. For the first time in her life, she has friends she can trust, a group to which she can belong. The Raven Boys have taken her in as one of their own. Their problems have become hers, and her problems have become theirs.
The trick with found things though, is how easily they can be lost.
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Entertainment Weekly has called Maggie Stiefvater, “one of the finest YA novelists writing today.” Maggie Stiefvater is a writer, artist, and musician and the New York Times bestselling author of Shiver, hailed by Publishers Weekly in a starred review as, “a lyrical tale,” and by BookPage as, “beautifully written, even poetic at times, and a perfect indulgence for readers of all ages.” There are more than 1.8 million copies of the Shiver trilogy in print. Since publication, rights to thirty-six foreign editions of Shiver have been licensed. Linger, the second book in the Shiver trilogy, debuted at #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list. The Scorpio Races (2011) was named to the following best of the year lists for 2011: Publishers Weekly, School Library Journal, The Horn Book and Kirkus Reviews. In addition, The Scorpio Races was named a 2012 Michael L. Printz Honor Book by the American Library Association and a New York Times Notable Children’s Book. Time Magazine called, The Raven Boys, Book #1 in Stiefvater’s latest New York Times bestselling series The Raven Cycle, “A flirtier kind of horror-fantasy, aimed at teens clutching tattered Twilight and Sandman paperbacks....Stiefvater’s quirky prose has ample nerdy pleasures.” Stiefvater lives in Virginia with her family.
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Thanks to the amazing team at Scholastic, I have a fantastic giveaway to share with you guys today! One lucky winner will receive a complete set of The Raven Cycle series (The Raven Boys, The Dream Thieves, and Blue Lily, Lily Blue) AND a limited edition Maggie Stiefvater Major Arcana tarot deck. To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter form below. Giveaway is open to US addresses only.