Rating (out of 5): 4 stars
What would you do if the one you loved was forced to leave you? How would you spend your days with him or her?
This is how Shiver’s Grace and Sam enter their relationship — with an expiration date already stamped upon it. To say it’s a new romance wouldn’t be fair. The two have been drawn to one another and eyed each other longingly for the last six years. This year, however, is the first time they have ever talked. Before now, Sam was always a wolf when Grace saw him; he was her wolf.
It is easy to become emotionally invested in the lead characters Maggie Stiefvater crafted in this first Wolves of Mercy Falls book. Both have flawed home lives (Sam’s pre-wolf backstory is heartbreaking and shocking), which adds to the desire to hold on to one another and need for an alternative family/support system. Both Sam and Grace feel real, a necessity in any novel, but particularly vital in a young adult title. Stiefvater elected to alternate points-of-view between the two leads. A very smart choice that allows readers to be consumed by Grace falling for Sam, but also ache as Sam deals with the growing cold that will take him from her.
Our hope for fated love kept us flying though Shiver. We were swept away by teenage love and the need to hold on to it.
The last third of the novel moves quickly, but for those needing plots that charge forward from the beginning may have a hard time getting into the book and will find the mid-section drags a bit.
The lag in pacing wasn’t enough to stop us from enjoying Shiver. We already have the recently-released sequel Linger on our bookshelf.