Monday, May 3, 2010

Book Review: Linger By Maggie Stiefvater

When I finished SHIVER (read my review), I remember thinking I could be happy if the story were to end there. As a standalone, it works (with a couple of plot threads hanging, but no biggie). And then when I started hearing that at the start of LINGER, Grace feels her long-dormant wolf nature calling, I was flat out terrified – how cruel would it be to tear Sam and Grace apart now that they’ve finally found a way to be together?

Well, I put my reservations aside and gulped down this second installment in a few hours after I got it at the Bologna Children's Book Fair over a month ago. I was going to wait to review this until closer to its July 20th release date, but I’ve been hearing more and more chatter from readers with fears similar to my own and I just wanted to assure everyone that with LINGER, you are in very good hands. Maggie deepens the story and creates a new sense of urgency for the characters that will carry into the third novel FOREVER. I won’t lie and say it’s not painful, but it makes sense, and now that I’ve read it, I couldn’t see it ending any other way.

LINGER adds two new POVs – that of icy, totally human Isabel and former rock star/newly turned wolf Cole. I liked the way the POVs sometimes changed right in the middle of a scene so that we could literally “see both sides”. And I also liked the way the characters played off each other – the grudging attraction Isabel feels for self-absorbed Cole, the conflict between Sam who never wanted to be a wolf and Cole who chose to be a wolf, and the three-way truce between Isabel, Grace and Sam as they try to keep their dangerous secret.

What I didn’t like so much was the interference of Grace’s good-for-nothing parents. After their years of neglect, their sudden interest in Grace’s welfare seemed very much like an artificial author way of creating a dramatic obstacle between Grace and Sam.

In any case, I can’t wait to be wowed by FOREVER next year. I totally trust you Maggie! Find out more about the series at the author’s website.

40 comments:

Shweta said...

Loved Shiver so can't wait to read this one. I want to see them together and I can't bring myself to think what Maggie has instored for them in Linger and Forever :)

Melina said...

I have read quite a few reviews of this book lately and they are all so good. It seems like everyone loves it! Nice review.

Melina

Zibilee said...

My daughter read and loved Shiver, and has been after me to read it as well. I am sure that she would love to read this one as well and I will be looking for it. Great review, Lenore! I am glad that this second book didn't go in an unwanted direction for you!!

Robby said...

I can't wait to read these books.

Frankie Diane Mallis said...

I loved Linger! And totally agree with you about the ending as well as ugh to Grace's parents! I just wanted to reach through the book and smack them. Linger isn't even out yet and I'm dying to read Forever!

Leanna (Daisy Chain Book Reviews) said...

I'm really looking forward to this one. Counting down the days!

Mrs. Vanquish said...

I loved Shiver, although I have to say only after I started it for the second time, but then Grace and Same got me... I totally agree with you that the ending of Shiver was just right like it was and that makes me scared to pick up Linger. But anyway I'm just dying to know what goes on with Grace and Sam.

Counting... days....to....finally...read...it!
Thanks;)

elizabeth said...

I am really looking forward to reading Linger! I can't wait!

Sandy Nawrot said...

I've somehow missed this book. What age range would you recommend it for? It might be something my daughter and I could read together, just as long as there isn't gratuitous language or sex.

Amy said...

Ah, I'm jealous! But i'm glad you liked it.

Jessica said...

I just read this last night and I totally agree with your review! I was worried about "2nd book syndrome" but she didn't let us down at all. It was fantastic.

Sandy Shin said...

Thank you for the review! I love Stiefvater's writing style and am looking forward to LINGER. :)

Insert Book Title said...

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Kathleen said...

I have Shiver on my "to read" list and look forward to reading that and this next installment!

bermudaonion said...

Between you and Amy, I may have to try this series.

Bella said...

AAAH I cannot wait for Linger! Shiver was stunning, one of the best books I've read all year, by far!

Jen - devourer of books said...

Gah! I can't wait!

Ladytink_534 said...

I don't believe I have heard one bad thing about this or Shiver. I haven't picked them up yet but I am looking forward to it

Miss K said...

Shiver has disappeared from our school library, so that needs to get back on the wish list! I can't believe that there is a THIRD book for me to wait for, when I am already waiting for Linger to come out. Delicious Torture!

Staci said...

Color me green with envy!!! I'm so glad that this book keeps its promise of being great and that I have something to look forward to this July!!! Yay!!!

Liviania said...

I am so ridiculously jealous of you right now. But I've already learned to trust Maggie.

Ladybug said...

I just finished Shiver a couple of weeks ago and I agree that it could work very well as a standalone novel. Not that I mind that there is a sequel. I'm exited to hear that we will hear things from Isabell's POV, I enjoyed her as a character in Shiver.

Thank you for your honest review, Lenore!

Alice said...

I loved Shiver, I would be so upset if Sam and Grace were torn apart!
I can't wait for Linger and Forever! I want them so badly!

Lily Child said...

I still have to read Shiver...It's been sitting on my shelf forever! :P Your review of Linger is amazing! I really want to read it!

Liz B said...

disclaimer: I cannot stand Beck.

spoilery musing:
I wonder how much Grace's parents are aware of the werewolf menace & her exposure to them & if that explains.
I wonder if Grace (whose parents were as neglectful as Beck deemed Sam's) was targeted as a child, the way Sam was.
And how this book played out just confirmed, to me, there is something more going on and we won't see it all till book 3.

Amy said...

I loved Shiver and can't wait to get my hands on this one too.

Donna Gambale said...

Great review! I read Linger a few months back and have been waiting til closer to the date to write a co-review on the FNC blog. But I definitely like the reason for posting your review now -- if I hadn't read Linger already, I'd be dying to know if it holds up to Shiver!

LovesSam said...

I am so glad that you loved it, and that it goes along a path that might not be peachy but is most definately the right one. I am quite excited to finish this myself, I read the first 100 pages and then decided not to read anymore because the wait until next summer will literally tear me up. Fab review!!

NotNessie said...

I really liked Shiver and it sounds like Linger won't disappoint.

Christina Farley said...

I haven't read Shiver or Linger and I'm anxious to read both!

Lauren said...

Shiver ended beautifully. It's quite a shame that authors slave over a book for months - or years - and then we read them in a matter of days. At least Shiver is one that I read overandoverandover.

S. Krishna said...

I definitely didn't love Shiver, but I'm still curious about this one. Thanks for the review!

kay - Infinite Shelf said...

Great review! I definitely felt a little like you did when I heard about Linger, but still I can't wait to read it. I'm glad you thought it couldn't end any other way!

Beth F said...

I have both Shiver and Linger here -- hoping they'll make good summer reading.

BookChic said...

I'm excited to read this! It's in my TBR pile and I can't wait to get to it. I like the inclusion of more POVs because that's always fun and it's great to hear that it's handled well (it can be hard to successfully juggle multiple POVs). Loved your review!

Misty said...

Hmm. I felt like the parents' neglect in Shiver came off as a very artificial way to allow Grace freedom to do what she had to, and to have Sam CONSTANTLY in the house...This does not bode well for Stiefvater's ability to weave something in...Here's to hoping I like this one, because if I don't, I think I'm done with her.

Chachic said...

Thanks for the review! Like you, I was happy where Shiver ended and I'm not really looking forward to reading Linger because I just want Sam and Grace to be together. But based on the reviews that I've seen, it looks like I don't need to worry. I will definitely check out Linger when it comes out!

Sarah Laurence said...

I enjoyed Shiver although the negligent parents were almost comical. I was similarly reluctant to read the second book, but your review has hooked me. I've been dropping in occasionally to your blog and just joined as a follower. I love what you're doing here.

Holly said...

I just reviewed LINGER on my blog and I felt similarly nervous for Grace getting "werewolf" symptoms, but found my mistrust unfounded. We can definitely trust Maggie Stiefvater! :)

Alyssa Udall said...

Great review! My favorite thing about this series is the characters: their separate points of view, their individual voices, and especially their interactions with each other. Stiefvater really makes them seem real, and I can't help but be invested in their lives. Can't wait for FOREVER to come out this July! :)
- Alyssa of Redhead Heroines
Book Review of "Linger" by Maggie Stiefvater