Maggie Stiefvator | 2009 | 392 pp
Listen, before we start, allow me to manage expectations – this book isn’t going to win any grand literary awards. Its a YA novel in the vein of Twilight.
To be fair to both series, I’ve never read Twilight. 💁🏾♀️🤷🏾♀️😂. It was only happenstance, while I was home doing some heavy relaxing, with nothing qued up to binge, when some cable channel showed all the moves in succession. Oh lucky me, YA vampire smut. I didn’t hate it but, I didn’t make any plans to rush out and get the books either. And though I’m poking fun at the fantasy-romance genre, folks love this shit to the tune of tens of millions purchasing books and movie tickets for the Twilight franchise. The Wolves of Mercy Falls (Shiver series) has its own millions of followers as well, though greenlit, the movie never made it off the ground. So, in other words, there is something here worth reading, pick fun all you want. 🙄😏
Im not sure how I came across Shiver. Cruising Libby late at night while attempting to manifest my Hold books taking less time and becoming instantly available, I’m sure. Nevertheless, the book was a hit with me. I was in the mood for something quick, fast paced, and outer worldly- this did the trick!
The story revolves around Grace and Sam. As a child, Grace was pulled from a playground by a pack of wolves and bitten. Before she could be hurt further, a young wolf, Sam, steps in and protects her from his pack. Afterward he watches over her closely, waiting for her to ‘change’ into a wolf. She never does and he never stops watching over her. Fast forward to current day and Grace is 17ish, a senior in high school and is obsessed with watching the wolves in Mercy Falls. This becomes especially true when ‘her wolf’ Sam, ends up on her back porch, in human form, bleeding out of a gunshot wound in his neck. Like Twilight, the main plot here is the developing romance between Grace and Sam the wolf. Other things happen, but to be sure, its all about how we keep Sam and Grace moving forward.
Pros: Its the romance between Sam and Grace for me! Its really touching and beautiful and takes you back to that first teenage puppy love. That all or nothing love. Alas, Sam is a whole wolf so we know any long term relationship between him and Grace will be problematic, how are they going to overcome? The pack is against humans learning about them so how will they respond to Grace and her friends learning the truth?
To add to the excitement, the pack has attacked and killed another young boy and now he is a wolf. The young boys sister is searching for the truth and the young wolf is reckless. Sam needs to find him to connect him with the pack.
Cons: As with all YA, the unrelenting issue is how do these kids manage to move around so freely and get into so much shit? I find authors either make them orphans of some sort, or never address it. This author decides to tie all issues into a ultra neat bow. Grace is incredibly independent and mostly cares for her seemingly immature and absent parents, instead of the other way around. Cold weather, and not the moon, brings on the wolf action so for just over half the book, I’m thinking, why not just run away to California, weird Missouri teenagers? Eventually, the author will explain that one away as well. I think I found the explanations too neat. On the other hand, we would still be here if she had left the loose strings so..yea. No win situation here.
Overall, good story. I loved the romance between Grace and Sam and the ending was beautiful. There are several side plots that keep the action moving so you feel like its a fast paced race to the end. There are 3 more books to the series, published from 2010 through 2014. I’ll likely pick them up and stash them for when I want a quick, fun, non triggering, light read to bun up with on the deck or next to the pool. ✅ GoodBook 37 of 46
For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf–her wolf–is a chilling presence she can’t seem to live without. Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human . . . until the cold makes him shift back again.
Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It’s her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human–or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever.