Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

ShiverShiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Publication: August 1st 2009 by Scholastic Press

Series: The Wolves of Mercy Falls #1

Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance

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the cold.

Grace has spent years watching the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf—her wolf—watches back. He feels deeply familiar to her, but she doesn’t know why.

the heat.

Sam has lived two lives. As a wolf, he keeps the silent company of the girl he loves. And then, for a short time each year, he is human, never daring to talk to Grace…until now.

the shiver.

For Grace and Sam, love has always been kept at a distance. But once it’s spoken, it cannot be denied. Sam must fight to stay human—and Grace must fight to keep him—even if it means taking on the scars of the past, the fragility of the present, and the impossibility of the future. 

If you’re still a bit confused about Shiver’s premise, it’s basically about werewolves and the seemingly redundant theme of forbidden love.

Take note though that this is NOT TWILIGHT. People need to realize that books are entirely different worlds. It’s not the same in every book. And I think it’s kind of lame that people stereotypically associate these kind of books to Twilight.

Enough of the ranting.

Like I was saying, the novel is all about wolves, but there’s a pretty interesting catch. Instead of full moons, the wolves in this world change because of the temperature. That’s a pretty interesting concept, and I think one of the reasons why I was encouraged even further to read Shiver. Because to be honest, I was disappointed with what I was reading.

The writing style was a bit wordy and cliched for me. There were also some unnecessary phrases used in the dialogue which annoyed me every single time. But Stiefvater’s evocative prose is something of a hidden gem here. It was all very expressive and thought-provoking.

The biggest problem I had with Shiver is the main character: Grace Brisbane. Oh man, that girl just pissed me off numerous times in the novel. I felt like she was being a flirt when she was alone with Sam. I JUST UGH I CAN’T STAND HER.

The pacing was pretty slow for me. I found myself bored with some chapters, and I think there was a point where the story was in its climax and then in the next chapter, it just dissolved. WHAT THE HECK???

Onto the more positive traits of Shiver, I found the story to be well-aimed. It wasn’t going in different directions, but it takes time to build the world and to leave some questions behind for the future.

I really like Sam’s character. I both sympathize and emphatize with his character. I also really liked the random lyrics he’ll create out of the blue. Maggie really shaped his character excellently.

The ending was beautifully tragic, although it was pretty much predictable. Overall, Shiver was pretty much a letdown, but I’m still going continue on with the trilogy.

2 stars

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