In this particular iteration, Sam is a werewolf and Grace is the girl who loves him. He has to stay where it’s warm (i.e. GRACE’S BED! Oh the salaciousness!) because the cold turns him into a wolf, and in a slash of pure tragedy this’ll be his last summer as a person before he is a wolf fo evah! Also, some jackass kid got himself bitten and is running around all new-wolf like (new wolves are ferocious like baby vampires, for those of you who only speak Twilight), giving Grace and Sam a Thing To Do while they hold hands and banter.
And, ok, total honesty time? It’s kind of sweet. It’s light, and almost flippant, this super-breezy romance where one of them happens to be a wolf. Are parts of it idiotic? Sure! There’s a boy-shaped wolf in my bed! And this, after 16 years of total prudity wherein I’m uncomfortable even talking about boys! I’ll just flirt and giggle, how about. Lean in to kiss him, how about. Be oddly unperturbed when he doesn’t actually kiss me, despite my blatant kiss-me face. <- totally natural reaction of a girl who’s never been kissed.
And I am extremely eyebrow-raisey in the face of ‘I can’t live without this’ after, eyeunno, two days, and also I hate for my characters to have too much unexplained intuition. That ten-year-old girl! She is going to be my future love, so I should save her from these wolves. That wolf! It has similar eyes to my schoolmate who I never knew that well and who is now ostensibly dead but whose eyes I totally remember flawlessly, ergo that wolf must be my schoolmate, however improbable that may seem since I don’t yet know about werewolves. I get that wolves, you know, sense things, but on the whole I think it’s a lazy way of not having to make up an external reason for all the shit you want to happen. On the other hand, love at first sight = no painfully awkward set-up where they stare at each other hate-lovingly from across biology class.
Perhaps the biggest let-down of the book is the dedication ‘For Kate, because she cried.’ If that doesn’t say h’melodrama then I’m a mermaid, but Shiver is SUPER-LOW KEY ON THE MELODRAMA!! There’s, like, an eighth of a misunderstanding, Grace has a quick fight with one of her besties, the new wolf’s sister is a bitch (but a funny bitch). Where is my simpering, TSTL heroine? Where is my domineering anti-hero?
So! All that sparkles is not cheap-ass jewelry. Lesson learned. This is unprecedented in the HDC but I…would probably read Linger if it were forced into my hands and I had nothing else to do. Six caterpillars?