Linger (Wolves of Mercy Falls, Book 2)
By Maggie Stiefvater
Genre: Young Adult
Published 2010, Scholastic Press
Hardback, 360 pages
In Maggie Stiefvater's 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 a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past . . . and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack. And Isabelle, who already lost her brother to the wolves . . . and is nonetheless drawn to Cole.This book picks up where Shiver (Wolves of Mercy Falls) left off, with Sam supposedly healed. One of the new wolves is introduced as a point of view in the book, Cole, who casts an intriguing element into the plot-line as he has a completely different perspective on being a wolf than Sam does. Cole is a contradiction in other ways as well, as he is a druggie rock star wanting to escape life who also happens to possess a genius intellect thanks to a scientist father. He has immediate chemistry with Isabel, too. At first I was baffled by this pairing, but based on personality and intellect, these two mesh well.
At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love -- the light and the dark, the warm and the cold -- in a way you will never forget.
Isabel also features heavily in this book. Even though she has attitude to spare, I rather like her, both for her sarcasm and for her brains. Sam and Grace never really seem too curious about the science and mechanics behind the wolf-human changes, but neither Isabel nor Cole can stop obsessing over it, though for different reasons.
As for Grace, now it's her turn to be the focus as she gets sicker and sicker, living in denial of what this illness relates to. Her and Sam both seem to have the mindset that if one ignores the problem, it will just disappear. I never liked that sort of approach - it seems cowardly. Really, their "epic romance" would just be another tragedy if it were not for the practicality of their friends, Isabel and Cole. In the case of this series, the lesser characters seem to carry the plot instead.
As for Sam, I found I enjoyed his random song lyrics and poems most of all. They lent a certain lyrical element to the book and added in the strength of emotion to pull me into the plot. Though poetry is not always the easiest thing to understand, his few simple lines interspersed throughout the text conveyed much more of what the characters were experiencing than a lengthy description could. I look forward to the conclusion of the series, Forever (Wolves of Mercy Falls, Book 3).
The Cover: This cover is much like the cover of Shiver (Wolves of Mercy Falls), but with the addition of a female silhouette, which must be to represent Grace. A simple, haunting cover is often the best way to go.
First Line: "This is the story of a boy who used to be a wolf and a girl who was becoming one."
This opening line gives the book a old-world fairy tale feel, which I love, and also tempts me with a promise of what is to come.
Favorite Quote: "I couldn't imagine anyone ever reading a book enough to make it look like that. It looked like it had been driven over by a school bus after someone had taken a bath with it."