Linger by Maggie Stiefvater

Series: The Wolves of Mercy Falls

Published: July 13, 2010

Source: Amazon

the longing.

“Once Grace and Sam have found each other, they know they must fight to stay together. For Sam, this means a reckoning with his werewolf past. For Grace, it means facing a future that is less and less certain.

the loss.

Into their world comes a new wolf named Cole, whose past is full of hurt and danger. He is wrestling with his own demons, embracing the life of a wolf while denying the ties of being a human.

the linger.

For Grace, Sam, and Cole, life is a constant struggle between two forces–wolf and human–with love baring its two sides as well. It is harrowing and euphoric, freeing and entrapping, enticing and alarming. As their world falls apart, love is what lingers. But will it be enough?”

Wait a second, I thought the plot was all wrapped up in Shiver? Guess again, Sam and Grace are back, with new dangers, friends(?), and broody poems. After the conclusion in The Wolves of Mercy Falls first book Shiver, it’s easy to have doubts about diving into a sequel. Unlike the usual “bigger and better” routine found in most second installments, Linger shoots to change things up a lot, eventually.

Once again, it is necessary to warn prospective readers about the pace of the plot. Especially in the first half of the book. Fans of Shiver as well as those looking for more romance will not be disappointed with the earlier chapters as Sam and Grace continue being so epically obsessed with each other as they epically ignore literally zillions of warning signs that everything is about to go wrong.

Sam and Grace’s plot spends a long time orbiting around the shockingly plain routine of problems being teenagers in love. To break it up a little, we have two new POV characters in Linger. Our new characters Isabel and Cole and their plots are nothing like the Sam and Grace saga. It adds just the twist Linger needs to offer more to it’s readers than simple, likable, predictable Sam and Grace and their unbreakable connection.

Isabel and Cole are both tributes to Stiefvater’s writing abilities. Both are so. . . flawed, edgy, complicated, relatable. Cole takes screwed up and extra to a whole new level. His chapters are raw, intense and unpredictable. You might hate him, or think he blows Sam out of the water on cool factor, or both. Either way, his adventurous instability makes his chapters one hell of a ride.

It doesn’t take many chapters in Isabel’s shoes before she becomes a more understandable character than the cold and detached ass-kicker we knew from Shiver, perpetually annoyed and unamused with everything and everyone. She might even have a warm side, somewhere, deep down. . . Okay don’t hold your breath.

Those looking for the feel-good connection between Sam and Grace will feel at home in the pages of Linger. Those craving more of the adventure and intrigue of the wolves will be rewarded as the story leans further and further in that direction. And as it does, we see there’s much more to the werewolves and their science than the first book.  

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