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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » Shiver (Wolves of Mercy Falls) » User review

Haunting, lyrical and satisfying paranormal teen fiction

  • Mar 2, 2012
Rating:
+4

The cover’s cold. The red dot stares from its center. And the title, Shiver, feels hauntingly frozen. Even without knowing what this book was about I knew I wanted to read it.
Author Maggie Stiefvater's writing is haunting as well. Two voices tell the tale. One, a teen girl, fond of wolves, remembers how she was bitten as a child. Oddly, it didn’t make her scared and her not being scared rings perfectly true. She’s sensible, logical, warm and kind—summer's daughter as winter draws near.
The other voice is that of a slightly older boy. Honest, insecure, wary and true, Sam becomes a faithful but wounded friend to Grace. Devoted to poetry, listening with heightened senses, he knows things others may never understand. And winter calls.
When a boy at school is killed in a freak wolf attack, Grace’s beloved wolf-pack comes under threat. And when Sam meets Grace, that threat takes a personal turn.
These teens have plenty to be angst-ridden about, but the author makes them lively and real without the endless introspection of some other teen books. They stretch moral boundaries with their choices, but their motivations ring true. I want to hear Sam sing. I want to read more of his poems—another thing the author does really well, with Sam's lyrics as natural as his actions, never reading like an author’s intrusion.
I really enjoyed this book, admiring the author’s skill, delighting in complex characters,  and hoping against hope that the unlikely “cure” would succeed. I know there's a sequel and I'll read it sometime, but for now, the story feels pleasingly complete and I'm glad I finally got around to reading it.
 
Disclosure: I got this book for my birthday and saved it for a reading treat.

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About the reviewer
Sheila Deeth ()
Ranked #42
Sheila Deeth's first novel, Divide by Zero, has just been released in print and ebook formats. Find it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, etc. Her spiritual speculative novellas can be found at … more
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Wiki

Brenna Yovanoff and Maggie Stiefvater: Author One-on-One

Brenna Yovanoff is is the author of The Replacement and has published in various journals. She lives in Denver, Colorado. Recently she sat down with Maggie Stiefvater to discuss Stiefvater's Ballad and The Wolves of Mercy Falls series. Read the resulting interview below, or turn the tables to see what happened when Maggie interviewed Brenna.

Brenna Yovanoff

Brenna: Even though we all know that characters are not authors, we also know that characters sort of are their authors (at least a little bit). Which of your characters would you say is most like you as a person?

Maggie: Well, most of my characters are delightfully single-minded, because that is what characters do. So if I were arguing a high-level thesis paper, I’d probably declare that, in fact, all of my characters are really me, just exaggerated, stripped of gray areas and less than crystal clear motivations. Even the evil ones. Maybe especially the evil ones. >br/>
That said, I’ve been told I’m quite like Isabel from the Shiver [Wolves of Mercy Falls] series and James from Ballad.

Brenna: If Cole from the Shiver trilogy and James from Ballad had to fight each other in a snark-off, who would win?

Maggie: James, I’m afraid. Cole has learned to rely far too much on his appearance to win these things and sometimes, my friends, a finely crafted chin will just not get you ahead in life.

Brenna: When your characters are romantically involved,...

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Details

ISBN-10: 0545123275
ISBN-13: 978-0545123273
Genre: 4-for-3 Books
Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks

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