Nostalgic Book Review: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

As a forewarning, this is definitely going to be a lot different from my regular book review format! I was tagged to participate in this challenge by the wonderful Kat from The Impossible Girl Blog (who you should check out when you get a chance!), and oh, what a challenge this is! The first part was to pick a book that I read over three years ago of which I even remember some vague plot points, then to actually commit myself into doing this! BUT here we are, so let’s do this.

But wait, you may be asking yourself, what exactly is this? Well, dear reader, here comes your answer:

The Nostalgic Book Review is a tag where you review a book you read at least three years ago entirely from memory. The review will be broken down into a summary where you summarise the book from memory, your thoughts on the book and an epilogue where you look up the book’s summary and compare them to what you remembered.

And the rules!

  • Please link back to Read Think Ponder’s post, so that the original rules are always accessible to anyone who is curious and wants to participate!
  • Remember: do not look up your book when writing it’s summary and thoughts.
  • Acknowledge the person who tagged you in your post.
  • Tag your friends and fellow bloggers – it’s up to you how many!

After sitting in front of my bookshelf, then scrolling through my Goodreads library to determine which one of my books were definitely read more than three years ago, I decided to settle on Maggie Stiefvater’s Shiver. I read it the summer between my junior and senior year of college, which was a little over three years ago, so it definitely qualifies. Furthermore, I’m about to start the Raven Cycle, which made this challenge a good way for me to get back into Stiefvater’s works before I do so! Time for a stroll down memory lane!


In Mercy Falls, Minnesota, it doesn’t take long for the summer season to transition quickly into freezing fall temperatures. With the change of the season comes a plethora of changes for Grace, the heroine of the story. She’s what one might call “a lone wolf,” so to speak; in her youth, she was attacked by wolves in her backyard and has found herself drawn to the local pack ever since. Despite having a few close friends she keeps around, Grace always finds herself looking toward the wolves — especially one she’s labeled “her wolf” with the haunting eyes. However, one chilly autumn night, Grace finds a boy her age lying injured and bloody on her back porch, but he just so happens to have the same eyes as the wolf she’s been watching for years. With his sudden appearance, coupled with the coincidental disappearance of a different boy at her school, Grace finds herself suddenly thrown into the den of the wolves in more ways than one.


I’m going to be honest, it definitely was a struggle trying to piece together this plot, but I do have fond memories of this book. I was planning on doing a reread of it soon anyway because I’m finding myself in more and more of a wolfy mood lately, especially as we get further into the fall. Shiver drew me in from the first page and, while there definitely is a romantic element to it, I do remember getting a warm and fuzzy feeling — wolves aside — from the blossoming relationship between Grace and Sam. Additionally, I think part of the reason why I liked it so much was because my partner’s name is Sam and he’s particularly wolfy in that he has a giant beard and is perpetually warm! Stiefvater is also a local girl; we lived in Harrisonburg, Virginia at the same time and I didn’t know what kind of a treasure I had within a few miles from my apartment! I was impressed by her creative take on the werewolf lore, where those affected by lycanthropy go through the change once their surrounding temperature falls below a certain level. It definitely makes for an interesting tale. I can’t wait for my reread!


Here’s the summary from Goodreads; let’s hope mine was somewhat close:

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.

Aaaay, and it was! Sort of! I forgot that the book switches between Grace’s and Sam’s perspectives, which the official summary kind of subtly touches on. I know that there are a ton of intricacies about the plot at large that I’ve definitely forgotten, but they ultimately didn’t make it into the official summary, for which I am glad. It just makes me wish, sometimes, that my Sam could be here so I could snuggle up on him like Grace gets to do all throughout the book.

Consider yourself tagged:

If you’ve done this tag already, it’s all good! Let me know what you’ve posted because I’d love to see what you did! If you don’t want to do the tag, please do not feel obligated to do so. Of course, if you’re not tagged here, but you want to participate — because it is a fun challenge! — go ahead and do it! Let me know what you’ve done and post it here!


6 thoughts on “Nostalgic Book Review: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

  1. Awesome review, Amber! 🙂 I really like how you integrated your personal thoughts and feelings about the book – which was what I was really trying to evoke from this tag! I haven’t read this book before; I have read The Raven Boys, but this sounds gorgeous. I’ll definitely have to check it out sometime! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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