Hope in the form of Shiver

So here’s the thing: I love Maggie Stiefvater.

My journey with Maggie Stiefvater began with The Scorpio Races which I picked up honestly because I thought the idea of man-eating horses was absurd. I was not predisposed to like that book and began reading it with a sort of detached amusement. “Hunger Games with horses,” I remember smugly telling my husband. After the first three chapters, I was hooked and humbled. Her style was simultaneously grandiose and simple. The island was magical. The characters were deep and identifiable and three dimensional. It was really the writing that got me- as if high fantasy had met reality.


I scanned the bookshelves the next time I was at the library and found out she’d written fairy books. No dice there- fairies freak me out. Also saw her werewolf books- Shiver and the like. I actually reached out to them, but I just couldn’t bring myself to actually pick them up. Werewolves aren’t really my thing either.

So I read The Raven Boys and fell in love all over again. She took the timeless style from The Scorpio Races and modernized it. Everything felt ancient and worn but fresh and modern. The characters were… exciting. Not a single stock character among them. Not. A. One. They were enticing and perfect and flawed and dangerous. I sighed and waited for the sequel.

dream raven

After reading The Dream Thieves I was convinced: Maggie Stiefvater is a writing goddess. She is brilliant and innovative and oh-so-deep. Each sentence is crafted, honed, and tested. Each plot is an intricate spiderweb I’ve never seen before. Each book is steeped in magic. There is no way I could ever write like her.

So I went back to the library and picked up Shiver. Despite my attitude about werewolves, I needed a Stiefvater fix. What I got was way, way better: hope.

You see, Shiver is a pretty good book. That’s it- just a pretty good book. The characters are fine, the plot is okay, the setting is alright. The writing serves the story well but doesn’t blow me out of the water. I’ll probably read the other two books but I’m not rushing out to get them. And it was written by the almighty Maggie Stiefvater. It was written before she wrote The Scorpio Races and before she wrote The Raven Boys. Which means one all-important thing: Maggie Stiefvater was not born a writing goddess. She became one.

And if she can do it, maybe I can too.

And maybe you can.

So go- write. And I’ll write too. Promise.

Update: I’m writing a new book- about 12,000 words into it. I love it so much but it’s hard to keep going with daily grind stuff happening. Speaking of the daily grind…

Here’s your cute picture:


4 thoughts on “Hope in the form of Shiver

  1. Heather Hambel Curley says:

    Hey lady, I was just thinking about you this morning. I didn’t go to the Pennwriters conference this year, mainly because I was too lazy to drive out to Lancaster. Glad to see that you’re doing well!! I’m excited to hear more about your new writing project! Miss ya!

    • Laura Lee Anderson says:

      Hi! I miss you too! Things are going well here- a publisher is looking at Yellow Bike and my new book is a blast now that I’m into it. It was slow going for a couple of weeks there. Let me know how things are going for you- it’s good to catch up. 🙂

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