Okay, I'm just going to say it...I've been becoming a wee bit tired of "my boyfriend is SOOO dangerous he wants to kill me, but I love him anyway..." and tired of wimpy female protagonists. Which is why I was hesitant to pick up Shiver by Maggie Steifvater. Before I tell you what I thought of the book, I'll tell you more about it:
From Publisher's Weekly: For years, Grace has been fascinated by the yellow-eyed wolf that saved her from its pack when she was a child. Sam, bitten by a wolf as a boy, is that wolf. Long obsessed with each other at a distance, they finally meet after a wolf hunt (inspired by the apparent death of a local teen) sends a wounded and temporarily human Sam into Grace's arms. Their young love is facilitated by Grace's hands-off parents (“Once upon a time, I would've leaped at the rare opportunity of curling up with Mom on the couch. But now, it sort of felt like too little, too late,” Grace muses), but threatened by two linked crises: the fact that Sam will soon lose the ability to become human and the instability of a new lycanthrope.
My review: I loved this book. LOVED IT! I was pleasantly surprised by the beautiful, fresh descriptions, and the honest-to-goodness good writing. I loved that Grace knew who she was and what she wanted, and wasn't afraid to be strong. I loved that even though Sam was a wolf, he had a very tender side. As for the "werewolf factor" I was so relieved that it wasn't werewolves-as-superheroes. It was a very realistic take on what turning into a wolf would mean to a human, and what sacrifices it would require. If I had to think of things to complain about, only one comes to mind. There were times when the plot lagged ever so slightly, and I wished it would move a bit faster. But overall, THIS ONE IS WORTH BUYING. (And I don't say that lightly!)
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Drugs and Alcohol: None
Sexuality: Mature but tastefully alluded to
Violence: Some, but surprisingly tame for the subject matter
Book-a-likes: The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan (both are beautifully written) and The Dark Divine, which is also has a main character named Grace who falls for a werewolf.