When I first set out to write this review, I kept hitting a roadblock when trying to express just what it is that I love about this series and its characters. In my head I know exactly why, but trying to put it into words has proven to somewhat difficult.
Maggie Stiefvater took a legend that we’ve all become accustomed to (from other books and some badly done reenactments done in Hollywood) and made it her own.
This story, this series really, is about so much more than werewolves and the way she writes it, you almost find yourself wondering if it could actually happen.
Shiver is about hope and love, loneliness and longing, heat and shivering.
Two of her main characters, Grace Brisbane and Sam Roth, are two halves of a whole that seemed to have been waiting for each other their entire lives. Grace is the girl who was bitten by wolves that lived in the woods behind her parents house and miraculously never shifted into one of them. Sam wasn’t so lucky. He spent his life raised by them, forming a new family when his no longer accepted him. He is the wolf she used to see outside her bedroom window with the beautiful yellow eyes, and she’s the girl that he longed to be near. After the death of one of the local boys in Mercy Falls, Sam and Grace find themselves thrust together by impossible circumstances and do everything that they can to keep them together.
The other main character, the thing they have to fight against throughout the story, is the cold. Each bout of shivers brings him one step closer to that horrible shift, the change he can’t bear to go through. Not only is the first installment of this series incredibly enthralling, it’s also beautifully written. There’s no other way of describing Maggie Stiefvater’s writing than to say it’s lyrical. Her prose his fluid and smooth, bringing to life the world that she’s created. I found myself wanting to fight off the cold and hold Sam in arms right along with Grace.
And in her second installment, Linger, she picks up right where Shiver left off. Only this time things are a little bit different, and there’s a new wolf to contend with. Cole.
If Shiver was about hope, then I think Linger was about acceptance. Written in just as a beautiful a lyrical style as the first book, Maggie Stiefvater continues Grace and Sam’s journey to understand themselves. Sam tries to come to grips with the reality that he is no longer a wolf and Grace deals with a cold, that turns out to be so much more.
She’s always been the strong one, so assured and in control. Now that Sam has to be the one, especially not knowing Beck’s fate, he’s even more lost than before.
With Grace’s absentee parents trying to step up to the plate and learning that there’s more to Cole than any of them originally thought, Linger takes you on an even more emotional journey than you could have imagined. The ending leaves you breathless and wondering just what’s going to happen next. Now I find myself longing for the final book, Forever, in this incredible series.
Waiting isn’t going to be easy, but I know that I’ll be in good company as other fan’s wait in anticipation. If you’re looking for a beautiful love story, one that’s about so much more than fantasy and destiny, then I highly recommend Shiver and Linger. You won’t be able to put them down.
To learn more about Maggie Stiefvater and her writing you can check out her website : http://www.maggiestiefvater.com/ her blogs: http://maggiestiefvater.blogspot.com/, http://m-stiefvater.livejournal.com/ and the Shiver microsite: http://www.maggiestiefvater.com/shiver/
Oh, and as a little treat I thought I’d post a couple of pictures from the book tour that Maggie did to promote Linger.