Sparrow's Reviews > Shiver

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
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Dec 04, 10

bookshelves: young-adult, reviewed, audio
Recommended for: Bertrice Small
Read in November, 2010

The bestiality was definitely the most beautiful part of this story. It may seem obvious to you that such would be the case, but it was not obvious to me. I am not typically a fan of falling in love with dogs. There was truly something surreal and creepy about that part of this story that grabbed me, though. If only this had been a short story about one girl’s creepy obsession with wolves, I think I could have really liked it. It starts out with a ghostly beauty that is legitimately respectable. And it ends with the same stark, Midwestern haunting feeling. But, the middle of this story is really, really douchey. It’s like when your friend falls in love, and it’s fun to talk about the boy she likes for a little while; and then your eyes glaze over, and she’s still talking; and then you get a little uncomfortable about the obscene level of detail she’s giving you (about what they ate for breakfast and how their elbows touched like fifty times, nothing exciting), and she’s still talking; and then you realize that both she and her boyfriend are morons, and you were wrong to have been friends with her to begin with. But didn’t she say something pretty about trees once?

I just wanted these kids to get a room, and then they did get a room, but kept telling me about everything. Gag. It was like being the third wheel in a makeout session that lasted foooooreeeeveeeer. One of the most boring, boring, boring stories ever. And, man, the guy is such a douchebag. He’s, like, composing douchey poetry while they’re making out and stuff. Like, just make out if you’re going to make out. I don’t want to know about any of these things. And I certainly don't want to hear your douchey poetry. Talk about a Shelley complex.

And, I listened to it on audio, so I couldn’t skim. The audio wasn’t bad, other than how boring this story was. I mean, I wanted to read my administrative law cases sometimes while I was listening to this. That’s how boring it was. Then there was a really douchey interview with the author at the end of the CDs. Oh, man. She was talking about how she wrote this book to make her audience cry. Fail. For me, at least.

So, the narrative in the book goes back and forth between the boyfriend perspective and the girlfriend perspective. That kind of makes sense to me as a device, but I always get caught up in thinking about narrative voices. Like, in first-person narratives, I have to create a background story in my mind for how the characters decided to write the book. It just seems like such a douchey thing for a boyfriend and girlfriend to impose their sappy story in the world and think it’s a good idea. Also, in this case it doesn’t really make sense because they make it out like the girl practically doesn’t speak English and only understands numbers, but her narrative has the more beautifully written moments in the book. That’s a petty complaint, but it’s true.

There is a thing about evil parents in here that I like, though. I liked how the kids reacted to the horror of their parents but didn’t seem to hold it against them. All of the parents were interesting to me, and they actually came off as nuanced. They were very villainous, but I think I like villainous, unreliable parents in stories. They are interesting to read about. If only this whole book had been about the parents. Because, as it was, this experience was like only reading about the pastoral couple in Anna Karenina. So. Boring.

Did I mention that this is a boring book? That is your takeaway message.
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Comments (showing 1-50 of 97) (97 new)


message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

So you're telling me this story was boring?


Sparrow Well, kinda. But mostly it was boring.


Sparrow Also, douchey.


message 4: by [deleted user] (last edited Dec 04, 2010 02:32PM) (new)

I thought the best part about this book was the color of the text. So pretty!

And I thought the absolute worst part was the awful emo lyrics by Mr. Douche.

I'm curious why you decided to read this.


message 5: by Eh?Eh! (new)

Eh?Eh! just make out if you’re going to make out.

Hahaha! Kids these days, no focus.


message 6: by Sparrow (last edited Dec 04, 2010 02:39PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Sparrow Ariel wrote: "I thought the best part about this book was the color of the text. So pretty!

And I thought the absolute worst part was the awful emo lyrics by Mr. Douche.

I'm curious why you decided to read this."


Well, my friend halfheartedly recommended it. I think she was talking about it when she first started it, but then was saying worse things about it later, and I forgot to listen to the bad things she said. I was driving a bunch of places, and I like to listen to silly books when I'm driving, or to books I know will be good. I don't like to listen to contemporary literature.

Anyway, I heard about the text, but I didn't get to see it because it was on audio! The readers had nice voices, though, so that was good.

ALSO, no joke about the lyrics! They were SO AWFUL. I had to stop the CDs a couple of times.


Sparrow Eh?Eh! wrote: "just make out if you’re going to make out.

Hahaha! Kids these days, no focus."


Right? Youth is wasted on the young


Aileen I forgot all about the douchey poetry!

I read it on the kindle, though, so I was able to skip over all of that.

In other news, I read the wikipedia about Cassandra Clare. Clockwork Angel has the same basic premise as City of Bones, so you're probably right to steer clear.


Mariel She wanted to make her audience cry? Bored to tears?


Sparrow Yeah, I can't handle her. The wiki's pretty funny, right? Funny, like, I want to hang myself this woman is so weird. Not funny haha.

The douchey poetry was pretty douchey on audio. I didn't fast forward because I didn't think of that.

Does Clockwork Angel have the creepy brother/sister romance? Because that is gross. I mean, it's okay in Star Wars and He-Man/She-Ra because hinting at twincest is creepy enough to be edgy. But just brother/sister romance is gross and lame.


Sparrow Mariel wrote: "She wanted to make her audience cry? Bored to tears?"

If so, success. I don't know. Everything she did to try to make people cry was kind of gimmicky, I think. Like, they are soul mates, but WILL THEY END UP TOGETHER?! Or will they be doooooooomed to lives of loneliness and wanting? I think if this book proved one thing, it's that I do not believe in soul mates. Being soul mates with a dog is just too lame.


Mariel It was creepy she would let herself die but a boy mattered more.

I don't believe in soul mates either. People change too much.

Bets on the font colors for the next books? I wanna see orange.


Sparrow When did she let herself die? I don't remember.

I bet it will end with a black cover.


Sparrow or rainbow colored.


Mariel And a pot of gold for all who managed to finish it.


Mariel And a leprechaun boyfriend.


Sparrow romaaaaaaantic!


message 18: by Penny (new) - rated it 1 star

Penny Mariel wrote: "And a pot of gold for all who managed to finish it."

Even if this offer were for real, I'd still stand by my decision to not finish this book. So Boring.

I might be interested in reading a Leprechaun/human romance though. I mean, why the hell not, amirite?


Mariel It would be different. Teens dig dating old dudes, dogs and little people.


message 20: by Penny (new) - rated it 1 star

Penny P.S. And I thought this would interest you: http://www.bestweekever.tv/2010-12-01...


Sparrow Penny wrote: "P.S. And I thought this would interest you: http://www.bestweekever.tv/2010-12-01..."

Okay, what? I have a problem with that. I DO NOT UNDERSTAND. This is making my brain reel even more that thinking about why a boyfriend and girlfriend would write their dog love story together. What does the marriage accomplish? Spiritual union? Can dogs own property in Australia? Well, according to wikipedia, bestiality is legal in Australia, so maybe he just wanted to express that their relationship isn't only based on lust.


Aileen Meredith wrote: "Yeah, I can't handle her. The wiki's pretty funny, right? Funny, like, I want to hang myself this woman is so weird. Not funny haha.

The douchey poetry was pretty douchey on audio. I didn't ..."


Her brother is still missing, so there hasn't been any interaction....yet.

She keeps pining over the stupidly arrogant main male character. It's irritating because she latches onto the littlest bit of positive attention and dwells.


Mariel The kids in my neighborhood staged a dog wedding. But between two dogs. They didn't marry the dogs.

The weirdest ever dog/girl romance? The Fire Rose


Sparrow Aileen wrote: "She keeps pining over the stupidly arrogant main male character. It's irritating because she latches onto the littlest bit of positive attention and dwells."

Yeah, the arrogant one was the brother (*spoiler alert*) in the other one. Gag.

So, we're good law students, huh? At least we know almost no one else is studying either.


Sparrow Mariel wrote: "The weirdest ever dog/girl romance? The Fire Rose"

Ew, that sounds weird.

And why aren't there any boy/cat romances, I'd like to know? Or, actually there probably are and I don't want to know about it.


Mariel Those are probably all animes.


Sparrow Somebody should do a romance between a werewolf and a werecat. They can fall in love, experiencing a strange attraction, at first. And they will always be the were- version of themselves at the same time and the human versions at the same time, at first. Then, as they get used to each other, their were-cycles will start to un-sync and they will start to grow apart as they see each other in human form less and less. It'll end on kind of a 'meh' note, with one of them talking about how love is all about timing, or something cliche like that.


Mariel Jason could do it. They would look expressively melancholic and sweet.


Sparrow Oh, he looks cool. Are his books good?


Mariel Yes! They are wonderful.


Kat Kennedy Does Clockwork Angel have the creepy brother/sister romance? Because that is gross. I mean, it's okay in Star Wars and He-Man/She-Ra because hinting at twincest is creepy enough to be edgy. But just brother/sister romance is gross and lame.

No, it doesn't - but please don't read it. It's really, really painful.

Also, whilst it doesn't have a brother/sister romance, it has one of those, "Are you my father?" moments from Star Trek that Clare is so fond of.

*Shudders*


message 32: by [deleted user] (new)

The font of book two is green! It is beautiful!

I never read the actual words themselvess so I can't speak to them. But ooooh the green.


message 33: by Sparrow (last edited Dec 04, 2010 05:49PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Sparrow Kat wrote: "Also, whilst it doesn't have a brother/sister romance, it has one of those, "Are you my father?" moments from Star Trek that Clare is so fond of."

She needs to let the Star Wars thing go. It's got the most recognizable story elements possible, and EVERYONE has seen it. (I know, there's that youtube thing of the girl who never saw it, but yeah right. She's probably a spy.) Clare uses all of the wrong ingredients.

We should have a Top Chef: Writers panel of judges on here. We could say things like, "It has very strong flavor, but it's not a flavor I like." Or, "There's a reason no one combines ingredients from Gilmore Girls with ingredients from Star Wars. It's just a mess!"

Anyway, yeah, I'm kind of lurking in your review of Clockwork Angel, Kat. It's fun to watch the haters. I love haters.


Sparrow (also, Congrats!! I heard your news through a weird grapevine, but didn't see the thread it is on. Exciting!)


Kat Kennedy Oh thank you! Yeah my Clockwork Angel thread has some great haters! Love to watch and participate in that trainwreck!


Sparrow I haven't participated because I'm not so educated on the topic of Clare. But, it is always hilarious to me how venomous the haters are on paranormal romance threads. Like, you can talk all the shit you want about Dickens, but GOD FORBID you don't find dogsecks and hints at incest sexy.


message 37: by AH (new) - added it

AH Meredith wrote: "Somebody should do a romance between a werewolf and a werecat. They can fall in love, experiencing a strange attraction, at first. And they will always be the were- version of themselves at the s..."

I just read a book with that - It was one of the Kitty books -
Kitty Goes to Washington. She is a werewolf named Kitty (go figure) and she dates a were jaguar. Interesting scene with a vibrating bed due to the purring.


Sparrow Yeah, after I started typing that, I realized that there was no way that doesn't already exist. I hear the Kitty books aren't bad, though. It all sounds like too much, but people seem to like them.


message 39: by AH (new) - added it

AH Meredith wrote: "Yeah, after I started typing that, I realized that there was no way that doesn't already exist. I hear the Kitty books aren't bad, though. It all sounds like too much, but people seem to like them."

Apparently they are OK if you skip the first one. The vibrating purring bedroom scene was funny.


Mariel I hated the first Kitty book.


message 41: by Penny (last edited Dec 04, 2010 07:28PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Penny I read books 1-7 of the Kitty series last January out of lack of anything else to read at the time. This was after a year of being told I should give the series a try.

You know, the Kitty series isn't so bad. I mean, I definitely have read so much worse. It killed some time--read a book a day during a hellacious week in which my kids were really ill. I'd say it's almost as good as Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Underworld series. There are times in which it's better then WotU, but book two Kitty Goes to Washington, while important to the series, seems kind of like it doesn't belong. Same with book three, although I remember liking that one quite a bit.


Sparrow I might give them a try. A lot of times I find myself reading books (like Shiver) because someone said something like, "I don't know, it's OKAY," and then I wonder why I'm not reading one of the books someone recommended because they absolutely loved it. Too much pressure with the beloved books? That seems like a wussy reason, though.


message 43: by [deleted user] (new)

Meredith wrote: "I might give them a try. A lot of times I find myself reading books (like Shiver) because someone said something like, "I don't know, it's OKAY," and then I wonder why I'm not reading one of the b..."

I have to say that I was troubled by this decision when it showed up on my feed earlier.


message 44: by Penny (last edited Dec 04, 2010 07:30PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Penny Have you read Blood and Chocolate? I think you have but I can't quite remember if it was you that wrote a review about it recently, or someone else.


message 45: by AH (new) - added it

AH A lot of people hated the first book of the series. I'm not an OCD read a series in order kind of person, so I skipped book 1 because I couldn't find it.

The Kitty series is not great literature, they are an entertaining read when you need a filler series or something to fit a book challenge. They are really quick reads. I think that after the second book, she does get a werewolf boyfriend. Too bad, the jaguar was hot.


message 46: by Penny (last edited Dec 04, 2010 07:43PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Penny Try them pick them up when you have nothing better to read. January is one of those really slow months when it comes to book releases.


Sparrow Ariel wrote: "I have to say that I was troubled by this decision when it showed up on my feed earlier."

Yeah. It wasn't the best use of my decision-making skills ever. But, I hate to ruin a perfectly good book with the first experience being audio. Sometimes that happens. I often choose ones I think will probably be silly and awful.

Penny wrote: "If you want to try them pick them up when you have nothing better to read. January is one of those really slow months when it comes to book releases."

But, the thing is I have a stack of, like, fifty books that I actually do want to read for one reason or another piled up right in front of me as we speak. They are all kind of smart books, though, and sometimes smart sounds awful.


message 48: by Penny (last edited Dec 04, 2010 07:42PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Penny P.S. It was Ceridwen's Drunk Book Review of Kitty and the Midnight Hour that finally got me to pick it up.


Sparrow Yeah, I thought about it when she first read it and then it sounds like she basically liked the second one, too. She is a trustworthy person. But the main character's name is Kitty. So, I don't know if that balances out, or what.


Flannery I'd definitely read the book about the weredog/werecat relationship. Also, if you are looking for a SUPER incest-y creep show, check out the Grave series by Charlaine Harris. Not only is it totally bizarre but she describes the stepbrother as tall, thin, pock-marked, and with a ponytail. If that isn't hot, I don't know what is.

And I beg to differ with the font people--the best part of this book is the cover.


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