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Bending the Spine

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Review: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

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.

mp3 file
Published August 1st 2009 by Scholastic Audio (first published January 1st 2009)
ISBN: 0545165083 (ISBN13: 9780545165082)
series: The Wolves of Mercy Falls #1
literary awards: British Fantasy Award (2010), An ALA/YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers (2010), ALA Teens' Top Ten (2010), Children's Choice Book Award Nominee for Teen Choice Book of the Year (2010), Pennsylvania Young Readers' Choice Award YA Nominee (2011) Pennsylvania Young Readers' Choice Award YA Nominee (2011), Florida Teens Read Nominee (2010), Teen Read Award Nominee for Best Read (2010), Voya Perfect Ten (2009), The Inky Awards for Silver Inky (2010)
How can I express my love for this book?  “It made me feel giddy like a school girl,” is hardly an accurate description.  This may be one of my favorite reads (umm, listens??) of 2011!
Grace, oh Grace, perfectly flawed, adorable, loveable.  Sam, awkward, love-struck, tortured.  I could not imagine two more perfect lead characters!  And the fact that they become a couple…YES!  Although, I didn’t understand the whole love-at-first-sight thing until WAY later in the book…you know, when it was blatantly pointed out.  I was like, “Oh, gah I’m an idiot not to see that.”  So, yeah, makes total sense, so just go with it. 
I even love the supporting characters: Beck, Isabel, Rachel.  I grew to love Olivia by the end of the book.  Even Jack has a special place in my heart.  Stiefvater did an amazing job of writing them.  Depth, growth, insecurities—I felt all of their emotions with them.
Now, with all the hype over this book, I was suspicious.  However, it did not disappoint as other overly-promoted-and-recommend books (ahem, Twilight et al) have.  Shiver could have been sappy, cheesy, awkward with the love-at-first-sight element.  But, this is no Bella-Edward mess.  We are talking about a well thought-out, thoroughly developed plot line.  Stiefvater is a rock star!
There was some angst, which I expected since this is a YA book.  Normal teenage stuff like dating, friendship issues, homework, all overshadowed by ware wolves and the perceived threat of them.  Though much of the book is spent in the thoughts of Grace and Sam, it is not boring, or dull, it is very suspenseful and intriguing.  I looked forward to being in my Tribute just to listen to a few more minutes.  I craved Shiver; like a moth to flame it drew me in.
The ending was completely beautiful.  Satisfying. Quenching.  I am sad now that I’m finished *insert super sad face here*.  Linger and Forever are going on my TBR, if they aren’t already!
5 Stars: I would stand out in the cold shivering to get the rest of the series!
Many Adventures,


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