by Maggie Stiefvater
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Reading level: YA
Grace has been watching the wolves for years, ever since she was almost killed in an attack. She feels especially drawn to the wolf with the yellow eyes. One night, a yellow-eyed boy shows up, bleeding, on her back porch. Grace knows right away that it is her wolf.
When a classmate goes missing and is assumed killed by the wolves, Grace discovers that there has been a lot more going on in the woods around town than she could have dreamed. As her feelings for her yellow-eyed boy, Sam, grow stronger, she is forced to confront some troubling possibilities. And those possibilities could have dire consequences for those she holds most dear.
When I read a book that's had lots of hype, I'm always a little bit wary. Will it live up to my expectations? Or will I end up tossing it aside, wondering what all the fuss was about? I've had Shiver in my TBR pile since Halloween 2009... and I only just got around to reading it now! I'm glad I was pleasantly surprised by what I read.
While this is essentially another paranormal romance (it's a werewolf book), the author did some interesting things with the mythology. There are no full moons, silver crosses, or wolfsbane in this rendition of the tale. I quite enjoyed this variation, as the author was able to make it fairly original (and that's not easy to do with all the paranormal titles on the market).
The story is told in alternating first-person points of view, so we get to see the story through Grace's and Sam's eyes. To be honest, I wasn't a huge fan of this technique in this book because I found it a bit confusing. Sam's character seemed consistent, whether he was the storyteller or the subject. Grace, on the other hand, didn't work as well for me. I felt like her character was a bit different when she was telling the story as opposed to when she was being described by Sam. My other complaint with the characters in this novel was with the parents. Why were they all so uninvolved? I don't think I've ever read anything like it. While this sort of characterization may be convenient for the plot, I found it to be very unrealistic. One set of lousy parents, sure... But it seemed like every parent in Mercy Falls couldn't care less what their children were up to!
The book was a page-turner, though, and I had a difficult time putting it down at times. I did like the writing style (descriptive without being overly flowery) and the author knew how to write dialogue properly.
So, all in all, I can see now what all the fuss was about, and I'm glad I dug this one out of the bottom of my TBR pile to read it. Unfortunately, now I need to get my hands on Linger and Forever. Darn addictive trilogies...
Overall: 4.29 out of 5