3 Mar 2011

LINGER - MAGGIE STIEFVATER

THIS IS THE SECOND BOOK IN THE MERCY FALLS SERIES AND MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS OF THE FIRST BOOK.

SUMMARY
In "Shiver", Grace and Sam found each other. Now, in "Linger", they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping dangerous secrets. For Sam, it means grappling with his werewolf past ...and figuring out a way to survive the future. But just when they manage to find happiness, Grace finds herself changing in ways she could never have expected...

REVIEW
I really liked this book, for a sequel it had just about the right amount of old and new, both in characters and storyline. It takes you to new places while examining the backstory of the newest character Cole, who I really enjoyed hating. Sometimes it is easy to forget just how young he is supposed to be when you learn about his extreme drug use, but instead of finding it repetitive (as I probably normally would have) it actually made the way his character develops all the more interesting.

One of the major things I liked about Linger,and indeed Shiver, is how it is also a rather philosophical text. They're not just, 'oh you're a werewolf but I love you anyway', it really asks you what it is that makes us human, what distinguishes us from animals, and how we deal with the things that happen in our lives. Sam is inspirational in this sense, even though I find him at times to be a little too emotional, he thrives on life and sees the beauty in what we take for granted. I also really loved the use of Rilke, who's poetry gives Lingerand Shiver a more literary edge, and as I said about 0.4 introducing younger readers to critical writing and language, Stiefvater introduces her readers to beautiful poetry that in this age of pulp fiction, soaps and reality TV is becoming lost.

Without giving too much away, I enjoyed the switching of roles in Linger, and how Sam's character comes to the foreground as he tries to take care of Grace. At times it took me a few moments to adjust to the amount of voices (well ok, all 4..) but that was fine, the cocophony of voice made the writing deeper somehow, more interesting to follow more than one type of 'couple'. Isabelle also develops and becomes more of a contester as one of my favourites.

I don't think people will be disappointed by this book; it doesn't pack the punch that the first does in some respects, but in terms of the characters and the message it is just as good as, if not better than, Shiver.

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