Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Now THAT is how you end a book. The ending was vaguely reminiscent of another YA novel where you know the thing is coming but you’re not prepared for the abrupt cut off. Or maybe you were, maybe you like to read the last line before the first line or something odd like that. I read Shiver as part of a three book series set on my Kindle, which means I had no idea when this particular book would end and the next book would begin.
It’s an interesting way to read a book, not being able to see the end in sight. You get to feel the swell of the climax a little more. You go along with the ebb and flow and it connects that much deeper. At least it did with me.
Now, Shiver isn’t reinventing the wheel here. Grace and Sam have fallen in love under strange circumstances. There are werewolves involved and in this iteration, their changing is dependent on the cold weather and not the moon. It’s a different twist obviously, and it definitely adds to part of the setting of the novel. I actually missed that they were in Minnesota somehow, my southern brain saw Duluth and thought of Georgia.
What I liked most about this book was that there wasn’t a ton of worrying involved. A lot of the time with YA novels, the authors go for the overly anxious overthinking teenage brain. This one was a nice change of pace in that regard. That’s not to say there is no worrying at all, but there isn’t an overly manic sensation to what is portrayed.
Despite the predictability of the plot, the story was still enjoyable. I still found myself caring about the characters and what was going to happen to them. I wasn’t sure what the point of some of the ancillary characters were, it was almost as though the author started out thinking they would be a bigger part of the story and then let them drop off when nothing dynamic was found within the character. It wasn’t detrimental to the story though.
The only real complaint is that they bothered to attempt to involve any science. Injecting the human form with meningitis-tainted blood from a random stranger was a huge stretch. Also, if the pack leader has been able to hold off turning permanently for twenty years, why does Sam only get eleven? They kind of explain it away as "no one knows why", but I feel like it's a cop-out and a half finished idea.
I’m moving on to the second book, I do enjoy a quick brain candy read so I’ll likely have that review ready soon.
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