Book: Shiver (The Wolves of Mercy Falls #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

Genre: YA Fantasy

Title: Shiver

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Release Date: 1 August 2009

6068551

Summary: 

For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf—her wolf—is a chilling presence she can’t seem to live without.

Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human… until the cold makes him shift back again.

Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It’s her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human—or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever.

What I Liked:

This book had a very unique werewolf mythology that I really enjoyed. The wolves weren’t the traditional werewolves who shift with the moon, they shift with the seasons instead. I also liked the mystery of the beginning. It starts of a bit confusing, and the mythology is’t explained for quite awhile. this only served to keep me interested in the book. I wanted to know more about Sam and the other wolves.

Grace and Sam spend a lot of time hanging out, not doing much of anything, but I felt it was okay, because they have such a limited amount of time to be together. I felt each moment was precious rather than being bored and annoyed when it felt like nothing was really happening. These moments were dreamy and romantic, which matches the overall tone of the book.

The writing in this book was beautiful. The descriptions were so well thought out and poetic and vivid. I especially liked when Sam would think in song lyrics and poetry. It added an extra level of beauty to his character and was such a good counterpoint to Grace’s logical thinking. Both characters had such distinct voices and styles that I never got confused with whose chapter I was reading, which is rare in a dual POV book.

What I Didn’t:

While this book is beautifully written and possesses a unique mythology, the story itself is rather generic.  This is the most basic of YA paranormal romance stories.  This is Twilight.  This is Fallen.  Is it better written than those books?  Yes, but don’t expect anything particularly new and exciting plotwise.

Overall:

I was surprised by this book. I felt like it should have been a cheesy, boring, shifter romance, but it really was so much more than that. There was such a sense of mystery, wonder, and romance, that it transcended the typical paranormal YA romance. The mythology was unique, the writing was beautiful, and the characters were likable and interesting.

My Rating: 3.5/5

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