I wanted to read this book for so long. Everyone in the book blog community seems to have read it already and they all love it. So there was plenty of anticipation.
And to make this short, I adore this book. I devoured it in one evening because I needed to know what will happen next to Sam and Grace.
I definitely had no problems getting into the story. I was already completely and utterly hooked after reading the prologue. Grace is such a sweet and caring character and she is very lonely. She does have good friends at school but her parents on the other hand are neglecting her by just not being home, not caring, being oblivious. Grace has one obsessions, the wolves which, in winter, live in the woods and which she does watch endlessly. She was attacked by wolves years ago (interestingly she is still not scarred of them) and still clearly remembers one of them with bright yellow eyes.
After an attack the wolves are hunted and Grace finds a wounded, naked boy at her backdoor. A boy with yellow eyes. Without any doubt she helps him and takes him in. When she discovers his secret, she offers him shelter and most importantly warmth. Soon we get to know that Sam is as fascinated by Grace as she is with the yellow-eyed wolf. Now they get to know each other as human beings.
I was very fascinated by the whole concept. There are so many shapeshifter/werewolf stories published at the moment that I was kind of sure that I read it all. But Maggie Stiefvater proofed me wrong. The idea that the shifting is activated by temperature is genial. In addition the longer you are a wolf the shorter the time every year you will be human form.
From the beginning of the book it was clear that Sam and Grace are both spell bound by each other for years. Without knowing each other. But finally the time has come to be together. But it is fall, temperatures a declining and Sam's human time is running out. Maybe he will never shift back into his human form. This gives the whole book an enormous feeling of melancholia, almost hopelessness and a lot of tension. I was reading how Sam and Grace grew together, written in such beautiful words and at the same time a was sad for them because there seemed to be no hope, no happy ending. But as my grandfather always says: Hope springs eternal! And like every other human being I did hope for them.
The love story between Grace and Sam is one of the sweetest, most loving and also almost most desperate I have ever read. It makes you feel great and sad at the same time. And I wanted more of it. The book could have gone on endlessly for me.
I loved that the POV alternated between Sam and Grace. You get to know the inner feelings, fears and hopes of both of them. And they got more and more precious.
Overall this is one of the best paranormal young adult book romance books I have read. I loved everything about it (sorry I tried finding a fault), especially the two main characters. There is more going on than just Grace's and Sam's story but this was my main focus. I know that Shiver (A very accurate title!) is the start of a series, but I'm not sure I want to read the following books. There is enough closure to the story to make me happy and I fear reading more will me me rather unhappy (I saw some spoilers about the 3rd book). Sometimes less is more. Do you agree or not?