Shiver by Maggie Steifvater

August is Once Upon a Time...
August is all about fairy tales retold. Ancient stories that have been brought up to date in modern times. These are a great way to get lost in a romance, an adventure, breaking the spell, or finding your true home. Back-to-school doesn't have to mean back-to-boring.

One of Grace's first memories is of the wolves. They attacked her, but all she remembers is the piercing yellow eyes of her wolf. Despite their rough treatment, she survives, and continues to be enraptured by the wolves, especially her wolf.

Years later, when a student at her high school is attacked and killed, Grace sticks up for the wolves. It's their nature, and knowing Jack Culpeper, he provoked them. Feeling desperate when she learns a hunting party has been sent out to kill them, she rushes into the woods, unsure of what she hopes to do. Witnessing one wolf get shot, her wolf, she is amazed to watch him transform into a teenage this really happening? He begs her not to let him change back, he is Sam.

Without much more thought, she rushes him to the hospital. Finally alone after his wound is stitched up, he begins to explain. His werewolf blood accelarates his healing process, so they have to get out of the hospital before someone figures it out. The "change" between human and wolf is facilitated by temperature, the colder it is, the more likely he is to change. Grace takes him back to her house, not knowing what else to do, and not willing to let him out of her sight. The wolf, her wolf, is Sam...this desire she has always held is real. He is real.

The biggest question is when - when will he change again? The tenuous nature of his existence does nothing to alleviate the very real feelings they have for each other. It's as if a dream has come true for both of them. He has always watched her, just as she has watched him. Their devotion develops in a way that seems meant to be. His respect for her is admirable and refreshing, without being too chaste.

Jack, it turns out, is not dead. He has changed, just as those before him. As a new wolf, he is unstable. He is showing up at the school, at home, threatening to expose their secret. Sam confronts him, only to learn that Jack is convinced that Grace knows the cure. She is the only one who was bitten, but didn't change. As the winter grows ever closer, the inevitable change in Sam becomes a tangible obstacle. Will Jack's insistence that Grace knows the answer turn into violence? Will Jack's sister Isabel expose their secret? Are Grace and Sam doomed to know love, only to lose it?

This book is what Twilight should have been, in my humble opinion. Highly recommended, which means a lot coming from a person who generally dislikes romance.

"Dull orange-brown leaves, dry and dead, clung to the branches and fluttered in the wind, waiting for the gust of wind that would knock them to the ground. That was what Sam was: transient. A summer leaf clinging to a frozen branch for as long as possible. 'You're beautiful and sad," I said finally, not looking at him when I did. 'Just like your eyes. You're like a song that I heard when I was a little kid but forgot I knew until I heard it again,'" (Steifvater pg. 208, 2009).

*Library Link*

If you liked this, check out:

Linger by Maggie Steifvater
New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow

Steifvater, Maggie. (2009). Shiver. New York, NY: Scholastic Press.

1 comment:

  1. Loved this book! Thanks for telling me about it!