“You can hear a miracle a long way after dark.”
How could I not love a Maggie Stiefvater book? Every scene, character, aesthetic, or setting is gorgeous and original. All the Crooked Saints is no exception. Its romantic and mysterious. Owls and roses and cacti and tumbleweeds and Elvis and cockfights and miracles. It was very different than her usual books, though. The Wolves of Mercy Falls series, The Raven Boys series, and (my personal favorite) The Scorpio Races were all AMAZING, but All the Crooked Saints brought something new and interesting and I really enjoyed it.
Obviously Stiefvater's specialty is magical realism, and this book is a great example. Set in the dusty Colorado desert, the Sorias run a ranch where they produce miracles to those they call the pilgrims. They give them the miracle, the miracle exposes their inner darkness, and then they have to deal with it. But the pilgrims usually take a while to figure out their darknesses, and during that process, they can’t contact the Sorias, which gets a little difficult when they’re all living in such close quarters.
I really loved the point of views in this book. It is told in third person and, though the description on the inside cover mainly focuses on Beatriz, Joaquin, and Daniel, the story itself stops in on the lives of people all throughout this story, throwing in a few flashbacks and really deepening the characters. It felt almost like a story was being told to you by some old man, it keeps making pit stops and is told in a slow almost rambly unorganized way that works SOOOO well, and leaves you feeling warm and homey.
My only real complaint is that I wanted more. I wish this were a series rather than a stand alone so that we could have a chance to learn more about some of the characters, but the epilogue did a really great job of closing out the story. That doesn’t however mean that I’m not going to wonder forever about Daniel’s childhood, and Beatriz and Pete’s romance, and how Joaquin found his love for music, and my lord, WHAT HAPPENS TO DARLENE AND HER ROOSTER? But that’s just because I have a mildly concerning obsession with Maggie and with books in general. But that’s beside the point.
This was a warm, folksy, quirky, and wonderful read, and it is definitely worth your time.
Published by Scholastic
Ages 14 and up
To find out more about the author: https://www.maggiestiefvater.com/
Grace C., EO Smith Blogger