My finals are
mostly over and this review has been long overdue! I hope to get into regular blogging by next week, so bear with this choppy review of Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater for the time being.
Once upon a time, 12-year-old me stumbled across an article in a teen magazine. An older Cedric Diggory and a pretty girl were pictured on it, holding each other in a way teens might find it 'sexy'. Reading the article, little me quickly became interested: it was about vampires falling in love with humans. Back then when little me just got out of my weeaboo phase, I loved just everything supernatural-related - and with Twilight being at its height of fame, little me was bound to fall in love with the saga. So little me immediately devoured and obsessed about all five of the books, without even spending a thought about any of the many flaws of Meyer's writing.
Now, being an adult, I wish I could slap the hell of little me. Because after rereading the saga so many times, I find that I discover more and more flaws and problems in the books. At some points in the book I wanted to smash my head into a wall. Or Stephenie Meyer's.
So after reading Shiver, I wish I could've given little me this book to read instead of Twilight.
By all means, no, Shiver is not perfect. But it succeded in most cases Twilight managed to fail (and there are a lot!).
First, the plot: It is your typical mousy girl living in a rainy town in good ol' Merica. Suddenly she finds herself in the live of a supernatural creature living with some kind of adoptive family.
Sounds familiar? It is basically the same plot as Twilight. But that's the point in Stiefvater's writing: It's very character-driven. Even if not to an extend as The Raven Boys, Stiefvater succeded to make the story being controlled by the characters, rather than the characters being controlled by the story, albeit its cheesy clichéd plot.
The story mainly focuses on the two protagonists Grace and Sam with their respective POVs. Grace is the kind of heroine, who does everything by herself and is independent
kind of. Her parents are always either away or straight out ignoring her, because they are supposed to be 'childish'. But I find this portrayal of parents quite unrealistic; sure there are some parents who ignore their kids, but not to this ignorant, selfish extend as Grace's. Otherwise Grace is pretty much bland, but still has more personality than some *ahem* other YA heroines will ever have. Sam on the other hand does have more personality, but I'm not sure if it is for better or worse. He trails on the border between romantic and downright cheese-creeps. This may be my personal opinion, but do boys really make up song lyrics everytime they do a thing? Because that's what Sam does; even when he's picking up some clothes he reveals his inner Ed Sheeran. Shudders.
Like previously said, the book is not perfect. Although we are introduced to quite a few characters, we never really get to know anyone besides Sam and Grace. There is a good amount of girl-bitching and shallow female relationships. The main character's parents are as good as non-existent.The ending was satisfying enough to read Shiver as a standalone book, but did not make me want to read the sequel.
It is still a better option for twelve-year-old me.
3.4 out of 5 stars.