Shiver: A Review by Natalie Liu

shivercoverDeep inside the woods of Mercy Falls, there is a strange secret surrounding a certain pack of wolves. Every summer, these wolves turn into humans and switch back in the winter. When Grace is attacked by them, she believes herself to be dead, but is rescued by Sam, both a human and wolf. Years pass, and through that time they watch each other in silence, forming an unbreakable bond. He is a quiet shadow hidden behind the woods, and she is the radiant sun that he longs to be with, but cannot. They never could have dreamed of meeting through an unexpected incident, but when they do, it is like the time they spent together had been filled with words instead of silences. However, Sam’s secret brings a snowstorm of harsh challenges and hurdles that must be fought against for Sam to stay human, and for Grace to stay by his side.  

Shiver is a book written by Maggie Stiefvater, who takes the meaning of love and bends it to its limit, testing just how far Sam and Grace, the two protagonists, can be stretched. They have such a beautiful relationship, and even though they have their own flaws and issues, they still manage to overcome those and keep their bond strong. They will do anything to stay together- even if sometimes, it means choosing between life and death.

Maggie Stiefvater paints her characters in a way that feels colourful and realistic, instead of simply black and white. They each have their own complex personality. The style that she uses is poetic, lyrical, and hauntingly beautiful. The story switches between the perspectives of both Sam and Grace, showing the lives of a wolf and a human. The werewolf component of the book is different from other werewolf books – I like the idea of how and the reason they transform, as well as the different view Maggie Stiefvater gives us on the wolves.

Honestly, this is one of my favourite books (and I’ve read a lot of books). I would definitely encourage any readers to try this book out if they are interested in the genres romance, fiction, young adult, fantasy, and paranormal. However, I’d suggest that only people ages 14 and up read this book, due to some mature language, dark themes and topics in it. Also, there is one issue I have with the book. When they met in human form, their relationship developed too quickly, and even though they’ve known each other for years, they haven’t been talking to each other in that time period. They were technically strangers, and so I thought they should have been less comfortable with each other at first. Other than that, the book was very interesting and good. The characters are unique, the bond that the two protagonists have is touching and heartwarming, and the plot is nicely balanced with a hint of action, a touch of sadness, and just enough romance. It can definitely make you shiver with anticipation.

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