Once again, Maggie Stiefvater rises above all expectations and current fads to deliver her own unique werewolf saga featuring her charming writing style and unique usage of her sprawling fantasy knowledge. I enjoyed every second of Shiver-from the very startling first page, where we are ushered into the breathless, deliciously fast-paced romance that is the story of Sam and Grace. I loved the way Maggie can keep the story at a very swift pace while still holding back to let the romance take its time. She also added little touches to the design of the book itself, like the Fahrenheit readings at the beginnings of each chapter, and the light blue ink color, which made the whole story that much more exciting. (Though I wouldn't recommend reading this in low light, if you want to avoid a brain-splitting headache.) ;)
I spread this book out over several days so it wouldn't finish too quickly! It was that good.
Grace acted exactly how you'd expect a seventeen-year-old girl to. She showed a lot of maturity, especially when it came to situations when her bf needed to be taken care of IN A JIFFY!! At other times, she said things that made me laugh out loud in their childish-like quirkiness.
"Dad, still watching the TV, felt around in the cabinet for a mug. His fingers found my favorite-a robin egg's blue mug that one of Mom's friends had made-and pushed it and the coffeepot across the counter to me. The steam rushed into my face as I poured.
'So, Grace, how's school?' I asked myself.
'Oh, it's fine,' I continued and Dad made a mumbling noise of agreement. I added, 'Nothing special, aside from the load of pandas they brought in, and the teachers abandoning us to cannibalistic savages-' I paused to see if he'd caught his attention yet, then pressed on. 'The whole building caught on fire, then I failed drama, and then sex sex sex sex.'
Dad's eyes abruptly focused, and he turned to me and frowned. 'What did you say they were teaching you in school?'"
Sam, on the other hand, was unabashedly and very refreshingly flawed (there's no perfect Edward Cullen in this vicinity, no Sir). He provides a perfect compliment to Grace-the two of them fit together like a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice latte on a cold day. I enjoyed watching them move through the first stages of their romance (though some of it was gag-inducing, in a sweet sort of way. They're cuties).
The wolves themeselves were woven through the story in a beautiful manner. It was almost like I was watching a pack of them moving throughout their daily lives in my backyard. Which, after reading this story, I really wish they would, and that one with pretty yellow eyes would take a special interest in me. ;)
The final plot twist and resolution was crazily brilliant, and beautifully executed, though bittersweet. (Hey, I do feel sad when minor secondary characters die, I won't lie.)
I most absolutely can't wait to see what Maggie has in store for the next installment.