Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Reading Level: Young Adult
Location: YA Stiefvater
Sam has the unique ability to turn into a wolf during the winter and a human boy during the summer. He lives with others like him in a house as human and in the woods as a wolf. During the winter, Sam longingly watches a girl he saved from his pack years earlier. Grace is obsessed with the wolves that live behind her house. Even though they attacked her as a child, she will never forget the beautiful wolf with yellow eyes that allowed her to live. When the wolves are hunted by a group of men from her town, Grace encounters a wounded, suddenly human, Sam at her doorstep. Their mutual attraction is immediate and intense. Sam knows that if he turns back into a wolf, he will most likely never become human again. As Grace attempts to find a cure for him, Sam begins unearthing some dark secrets about his pack and their yearly activities. Can Sam come to terms with his upbringing and his adopted family? Will Grace and Sam beat the odds and find a way to be together?
Although the plotline of shiver is relatively familiar, the author’s writing made it special. She really immerses the reader in the story. I felt like I could actually smell the woods in the winter as the cold seeped into my bones. Normally, I would say that the relationship between the two characters was shallow, but she does a wonderful job of developing their relationship slowly along with the story. This book is by no means perfect, and in some instances, the parallels to Twilight are far too obvious. The enthusiastic gushing over Sam’s eyes really started to wear on me by the end. However, the storyline was well executed and the ending satisfying, making it an enjoyable read.
The Bottom Line: If you love Twilight, give this one a shot. I think it’s perfect for fans of that novel, particularly ones who enjoyed the romance factor. If you are tired of the basic Twilight-esque plot, pass this one up. There are more creative stories to enjoy in this genre.