Saturday, December 7, 2013

DNF: Shiver (The Wovles of Mercy Falls #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Wolves of Mercy Falls #1
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Werewolves, Paranormal
Rating:  DFN
Published by Scholastic Press on August 1, 2009
Pages: 390
Amazon | Barnes & Noble
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.
I guess it's not really a DNF since I've read it once before, but still... I simply couldn't continue on with this book. When I was 10 and I first got my nook, Shiver was one of the first five books I got. I don't know what was up with me then, but it seemed like the only thing that I wanted to read about was love--no plot, no characterization, no action, just love. Let's just say that over the past four years, a lot has changed. For example, my rating for Shiver is no longer four stars on Goodreads. In fact, it's now one.

I only picked up this book to read it again because Lindsay read it, thought it was good, and I didn't remember what happened other than the fact that this girl named Grace falls in love with a werewolf named Sam. I'm just going to say that I wish I never read this book again. I wish I just left it on my nook, allowing myself to still believe that I thought Shiver was a good, solid book. One-fourth through the book, I already wanted to rip my freaking hair out. It's so brain cell murdering, this book is. I asked Lindsay if it's just me that hates this book so much, and she said that it's just not for some people. Slow books, that is.

She's wrong. Shiver might be slow, but so are John Green's books, and I love John Green's book. They're deep and meaningful. I read in several reviews that Shiver is a tear jerker and that it's heartbreaking and wonderful but I can't agree. I just can't. The writing just drags on and on. And where one of my favorite reviewers says that the writing is absolutely beautiful, I'm over here just like 'no.'

Sam, who's the werewolf, doesn't know how to speak or think words while he's in his wolf form and so when he becomes human he doesn't really know how to control or use the influx of words that pour into his mind. Therefore, naturally, he resorts to song lyrics. Just no. Those lyrics sucked. No. Just no.

And Grace. Don't even get me started on her. Sam is clearly trying to be portrayed by the author as some magnificent creature of great beauty and emotions when really he's just annoying, obsessive, a little creepy, and a sap. Grace on the other hand...she's just plain flat. I can't find anything I like about her. She's obsessed with wolves because of one particular wolf's eyes that she saw while the other wolves were mauling her face. I don't know about you, but if wolves were mauling my face I'd be screaming bloody murder, not paying attention to the wolf with yellow eyes. Oh, and whenever Sam or Grace use the term 'yellow eyes' to describe Sam's eyes, I always think that his eyes look like piss.


I also hated Sam and Grace's relationship together. In my opinion, it was disgusting as hell. For instance, Grace watches Sam for years as a wolf and gains an obsession over him? Unlikely. And the fact that she fell in love with a wolf because of his eyes is absurd. Then literally one day after they meet in human form, he kisses her. Big no-no. I don't care if they've known each other (hypothetically...) for six or so years. Just no.

The supporting characters were very 2-D as well. Don't tell me that I just didn't read enough to realize that they had a soul, because I read half the book. The beginning was monotonous and uneventful. Why would I want to read more when there are other books I could reading? The only character that didn't fry my brain is Isabel. From the few encounters that Grace had with her, I liked her.

Other than Isabel the only saving grace (no pun intended) in Shiver was the werewolf world. The world that Stiefvater created for her wolves was amazing. She completely banished the other stereotypes for wolves and created her own. I'd give Shiver two stars because of her creativity, but because of everything else wrong and boring in this book, I simply cannot do that. I enjoyed pretty much nothing while reading this and two stars would suggest that I enjoyed some components and was about to persevere through.

Honestly, I think this is just one of those books that you really have to get into. I can't really recommend this to anybody because clearly I loved it before but hate it now. And plenty of my favorite reviewers on Goodreads loved this book, so I'm not really sure.

It's up to you whether or not to read it. I just suggest that you save your money and borrow this from the library, and if you like it, then by all means go and but a hard copy. But I have to admit that maybe I'll try to reread it for the third time sometime in the future when I don't have as many books on my immediate TBR as I do at the moment. Maybe I'll enjoy it more as a fifteen, sixteen, or seventeen year old? I just hope that The Raven Boys is better, because I bought that book too.

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