A Rogue Librarian's Reading List

{September 28, 2010}   Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Plot: When she was 11, Grace was dragged into the woods by starving wolves. She somehow survived and since then she has been obsessed with the wolves living in the forest behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf fascinates her especially; she thinks of him as her wolf. When a high school boy is attacked and killed by wolves, the town starts to hunt them down. After one such hunt, an injured, yellow-eyed boy appears on Grace’s porch and she knows instinctively that he is her wolf and that she must protect him.

This novel is very different from your typical werewolf story. Stiefvater creates a very unique and surprisingly deep mythology. There is nothing supernatural about her werewolves. They are simply people who become wolves and only as monstrous as they were when they were human. The exploration of the motives of the different wolves and the search for a cure make for a nice little mystery though this is first and foremost of romance.

Shiver is slow paced and not very action packed (so if you are looking for adrenaline and gore, look elsewhere) but it is a very sweet love story. I find that the romance starts quite abruptly but it develops nicely and the forces trying to separate Grace and Sam makes it quite bittersweet. I also, quite simply, like Sam. The typical werewolf boyfriend (I can’t believe I can actually write that statement), is macho, controlling, driven by lust and animal urges. Clay from Kelly Armstrong’s Bitten is a good example of this. But Sam is shy, sensitive and artistic. He’s a nice counter-point for the stoic, pragmatic Grace and his struggles to remain human are quite poignant.

There is currently a movie in the works. I’m curious to see how that will turn out.

Watch the book trailer:


[…] this book 2 and a half years ago, so I won’t do it all over again. You can read my review here. But I will say that after all this time and all the books, Shiver is still my favorite werewolf […]

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