Review: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Review: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Review: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Series: ,
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult, Paranormal Romance
Published by Scholastic Press
Publication Date: August 1st 2009
Pages: 390
Format: Hardcover
Buy the book: AmazonB&N



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.


My Review

Everything that I didn’t like about this book I’m positive other people love so take this review with a grain of salt.


The author tossed almost all the traditional werewolf folklore out the window, but I happen to like traditional werewolf folklore so it didn’t work for me. I love the fact that Sam wasn’t a typical “pretty boy alpha male with a perfect body”, but werewolf novels are one of the few times that type of character makes sense. He was so lanky and sensitive that I had a hard time buying that he was the future alpha of the pack. He was too sweet for words, and I liked him, but I got sick of the song lyrics he was constantly writing inside his head.


The entire book was written in a very lyrical way, and again, that is going to work for some people, but you are dealing with a girl who doesn’t really like poetry so it annoyed me. Don’t get me wrong, I like Shakespearean sonnets, and I get choked up when I read Annabel Lee, but for the most part I don’t like flowery writing. 


I like that Grace wasn’t fragile and stereotypically girly, but she still maintained a softness that came out whenever Sam was around. The fact that she became obsessed with wolves after almost being killed by them when she was a child, made sense. Instead of fearing them she worked to understand them and subsequently fell in love with them. However, that doesn’t mean I wasn’t creeped out by the fact that she fell in love with Sam when he was in his wolf form. The book is very clear that when Sam becomes a wolf, he is a wolf. Yes, he’s a little stronger and faster than your average wolf, but he’s a wolf nonetheless. And Grace somehow fell in love with him when he was still a wolf. This and a few other illogical things are explained before the book ends. But all the explanations felt too convenient.


I am willing to admit that this was a good book. The writing was not my taste, but I recognize that it was pretty. I won’t say that the mystery, romance, and fantasy elements were well written, but they would entertain a lot of people. I can’t say whether I will continue with the series or not. I liked this one enough to consider finding out what happens to Sam and Grace in the future, but I also don’t understand how the author is going to squeeze that many books out of their story. This ended pleased me enough that I may just have to leave things as they are.


If you want a different take on werewolves, enjoy flowery writing, and want a leading man who doesn’t fit the stereotypical alpha male role, then this is going to be the perfect read for you.


Because of violence and mild sexual content, I would recommend this book for ages 14 and up. There is no detailed sexual content.


3 Roses

One StarOne StarOne Star

Author Biography

About Maggie Stiefvater

New York Times bestselling author of The Shiver Trilogy, The Raven Cycle, and The Scorpio Races. Artist. Driver of things with wheels. Avid reader.

All of Maggie Stiefvater's life decisions have been based around her inability to be gainfully employed. Talking to yourself, staring into space, and coming to work in your pajamas are frowned upon when you're a waitress, calligraphy instructor, or technical editor (all of which she's tried), but are highly prized traits in novelists and artists. She's made her living as one or the other since she was 22. She now lives an eccentric life in the middle of nowhere, Virginia with her charmingly straight-laced husband, two kids, two neurotic dogs, and a 1973 Camaro named Loki.

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