Grace is fascinated by the wolves in the forest behind her house. And when she meets Sam, she has a feeling that she has seen his eyes before. He’s her wolf, who she’d been watching since she was little. But when one of the boys in school gets killed by wolves, the town turns their attention to killing the wolves.
Shiver, is a young adult romance focused on Grace as she falls in love with the human side of Sam, before the winter comes and he’s forever transformed into wolf. Mixing both a mediocre plot with Maggie Stiefvater's flowing narrative voice.
The plot itself felt boring and hard to actually get through. If it weren't for the fact I have a schedule to finish books, I might've not finished this one. The plot just never caught me until the very end. It was the same old junk that we've seen in millions of other young adult novels. Average athletic boy falls in love with strange unsocial girl. That's summarizes the plot with all of the catchy words they stamp on it.
The characters come off as if they are trying to be real, but they fail. Grace’s parents are your kind of parents that don’t give two craps about what Grace does. That’s all I know about them, and they are shown in only a handful of scene , and I’m happy because most of their dialogue seems basic. Grace herself doesn’t come off as original. She falls in love so fast with, Sam, it feels unreal and unnatural. Sam isn't a werewolf in the true sense of killing people for fun that ruled the earlier days of werewolves. He's your caring werewolf, who doesn't believe in killing people. Doing the same thing Twilight did to vampires.
But even through it’s lack of central elements of characters and plot, Shiver brings new elements to the table. At the start of each chapter you get the temperature of the scene. That felt new and clever since the only way for wolves to change form is for the temperature to be too low. This brings something new to the table.
Maggie isn’t a bad author. She only chose the wrong plot. Shiver has a bad plot that’s hard to actually get into and the characters are hard to care about, but Maggie’s narrative voice is strong and she gives the description in the scenes a sort of life of their own that makes them seem natural, knowing exactly how much description to add without weighing down an entire scene, which is hard.
The only thing that made this book even worse is that I bought, The Raven Boys, a novel also by Maggie Stiefvar. It's plot wasn't basic and were actually filled with surprises. The characters weren't basic and felt static, but felt lively. So coming from reading such a good book by Maggie, and I wanted to read one of her earlier works. Shiver, was a let down, but I would probably continue reading the other two novels in the Wolves of Mercy Falls series when time permits.
I would only recommended, Shiver, to someone who loves super natural young adult novels, but even then you might be disappointed.