“Shiver” by Maggie Stiefvater
So my first question with this book was how the heck to you say the author’s last name? Thankfully, she has a fantastic FAQ section on her website, and the answer is steve-otter. So there’s that bit of helpfulness for when you go request it (you should have seen me stumbling over the name to the B&N salesguy as I juggled a bag full of children’s picture books, two kids running around and a squirmy infant… one of those awesome mom moments where I wonder again why I don’t just bite the bullet and get a stroller…but the salesguy found it for me. Thanks Mr. Man!)
This is one of those novels that I’ve been hyped up about, mainly because I follow Maggie’s blog and was SO impressed by her own production of her book trailer (which includes hand-cut stop-motion awesomeness). Watch and enjoy:
As you can imagine, the hype had me excited but a little worried. I’ve been aware of this book for a few months, but would it actually be as awesome as I had been led to believe? When Anthony finally bought the book for me last weekend, I had my answer:
The story is about an introverted, independent girl named Grace who was attacked by a wolf pack when she was a child. But she was rescued by one of the wolves who dragged her away from the pack and brought her back to the safety of her yard. Through the years, Grace has never forgotten her yellow-eyed hero and sees him every winter as he continues to guard her in the woods surrounding her house.
What Grace doesn’t know is that her wolf is actually a werewolf named Sam who wants nothing more than to have a normal, human life with Grace. But when the werewolf pack is attacked by hunters, Sam (as a human) is thrown into Grace’s life, and that is when love begins to grow.
What I loved about this book:
- Stiefvater’s prose is beautiful, elegant and unique. I very rarely want to re-read lines/paragraphs in YA novels, but I was frequently going over sections in “Shiver” again thinking “how in the world did she come up with that line?”. Maggie is to my writing what beautiful women are to my self-esteem: humbling!
- The dialogue is very realistic and believable.
- There’s plenty of kissing, and only one sex scene that is very tactfully (cleanly) written (meaning, if it was a movie, you’d see them get in bed and then the camera would pan to the curtains… no graphic details)
What I didn’t love:
- Grace’s parents are hopelessly out of touch with their daughter’s life. There’s a period in the novel where Grace has virtually no contact with her parents for an entire week. A week in which her car breaks down and she buys a new one because she has her dad’s checkbook with her. Huh?
- Towards the end of the book, one of Grace’s friends is bitten by another werewolf, which seems like that should be a really big deal (at least I wanted more details!), but it just happens and she goes on her (not so) merry way. I would have loved more about it, but maybe that will come up in the next book. (I really hope it does!)
But my overall impression is that this is a fantastic novel. I was totally entertained and now I really can’t wait until September when the second book in the series, “Linger”, is released!
Have you read this book? What did you think? Does this sound like a book you’d like to read? Please leave your comments!