ARC Review: Teen Titans: Raven by Kami Garcia & Gabriel Picolo

Teen Titans: RavenTeen Titans: Raven by Kami Garcia
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

When a tragic accident takes the life of 17-year-old Raven Roth’s foster mom–and Raven’s memory–she moves to New Orleans to recover and finish her senior year of high school.

Starting over isn’t easy. Raven remembers everyday stuff like how to solve math equations and make pasta, but she can’t remember her favorite song or who she was before the accident. And when impossible things start happening, Raven begins to think it might even be better not to know who she was before.

But as she grows closer to her new friends, her foster sister, Max, and Tommy Torres, a guy who accepts her for who she is now, Raven has to decide if she’s ready to face what’s buried in the past…and the darkness building inside her.

Warnings: automotive accident, death of parent

Firstly, this volume brings us Raven’s origin story so don’t expect to see the other Titans yet. Raven moves in with her foster mother’s sister and her daughter after an accident, and now, with her empath powers awoken she is overwhelmed by everyone’s emotions. Thankfully, her new sister Maxine is there to help her out. Raven is still uncertain about her origins (having been told that her mother had given her up because of an abusive father) and her nightmares keep growing. Max’s mom is trying to divine what the circumstances around Raven are, but she keeps it from Raven itself.

The plot initially feels divided into different parts – there’s Max’s mother trying to find out the mystery of Raven, Maxine’s secret, Raven’s uncertainty about whether her powers are real and her memory loss, and the romance with the new guy Tommy. They come together to make sense by the end, but it still leaves us with a lot of questions. Among the characters and their relationships, I loved Maxine’s and Raven’s sisterly bond that snaps in place so easily, the former caring for the latter and helping her navigate her newfound powers (providing her with the headphones, taking her to a diviner, standing up for her). The bully situation, meanwhile, felt shoe-horned in just to demonstrate Raven’s growing powers.

The artwork is, in a word, interesting. The character design is good, but the coloring style has me a bit on the fence. The mostly monochromatic style has dashes of colors added in randomly (but mostly focused around Raven) in a loose ink-wash style, which is sorta different from what I have seen of the artist’s work on his social media. Nevertheless, the overall effect is still beautiful.

Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review from DC Ink, via Netgalley and Edelweiss.

View all my reviews

Buy links

The Book Depository | Wordery

Released on July 2, 2019

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