I was delighted when this book was delivered rather unexpectedly into my hands (Thanks Angie!). I’d been eagerly awaiting Shiver from the first time I read about it, since it sounded so promising and I’d already been impressed by Lament, Maggie Stiefvater‘s first novel. The actual read definitely followed suit: I was recommending the book before I even finished it.
It’s September, and Grace’s junior year has started with a bang: bully Jack Culpeper was killed by wolves. While most everyone around her took notice and found a reason to be terrified of the wolves, Grace only feels worry. Grace, who ONLY happened to be attacked by the same animals six years ago, feels only sympathy. She’s been watching the woods for years from her backyard for HER wolf – the one with the yellow eyes. For some unexplained reason, she feels more attached to this wolf than her parents, who are married to their careers, and her two friends Rachel and Olivia, who are ignorant of Grace’s true feelings. But then Sam comes along, and his eyes look so familiar, and Grace feels like she already knows him.
I was surprised at how much Shiver grabbed me from the first page, when I was trying so hard not to let my expectations be sky-high, and because I had been so excited for it and it’s premise, which is right up my alley, and I didn’t want to be let down. Young Adult? Yes. Paranormal fantasy if at all erring on the realistic/scientific side? Yes(!) Romance/Love? Yes, yes, yes! With all these executed skillfully, the writing didn’t necessarily have to be great, but it was. It was beautiful. Stiefvater’s prose is lyrical, with a haunting beauty that fits the fantastical elements and her characters. My only complaints are that it ended too soon, and there were some loose ends, but *loud cheering* there’s a sequel, Linger! It is a huge relief to find out the ending you thought unsatisfactorily abrupt was actually a mini-cliffhanger.