Friday, October 09, 2009

Books for Team Jacob

My two favorite werewolf books are R.L. Fevers' Werewolf Rising (which, sadly, is out of print) and Stephen Cole's Wounded series(even though I can't get book 2 for my library anywhere). Have decided that I must be Team Jacob, because werewolves do not seem as evil as vampires. The two books I read last night are excellent examples of werewolf books.

Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver has the best cover ever. Really. Slightly iridescent, and the dot on the "i" is in red. Even the spine is great. Grace was attacked by wolves as a child, but saved by one of them. Every winter, she sees this wolf with the yellow eyes watching her. When a boy is killed by wolves, locals go out shooting to kill them, and a naked boy shows up at Grace's back door. Sam claims to be the wolf-- and she can tell by the eyes that he is. He is a lycanthrope, but only changes into wolf form when the weather is cold. The two are hopelessly in love, and spend as much time together as they can, since Sam fears that he will turn into a wolf permanently very soon. Can the two of them find a way to keep this from happening? I won't spoil it for you, because it is an excellent book. There is one brief and very carefully done sex scene, which younger students won't quiet understand. This is better than Twilight because the love seems so star-crossed and impossible, and no one whines. They try to change things, but seem to know that they will still have that love even if they can't be together. Phenomenal.

Less ethereal and poetic but much more fun (thus more accessible to most middle schoolers) is Heather Davis's Never Cry Werewolf. Shelby's stepmother is strict, and when she catches Shelby kissing a senior on the front porch after being grounded, she sends her off to a "brat camp". On the bus in, Shelby sees Austin Bridges, the son of a rock star. When the bus breaks down, someone steals his backback, and she chases off into the woods to help find it. Turns out that Austin has drugs, which are confiscated. Camp isn't as horrible as it could be, but it turns out that Austin really needs the drugs-- it's a serum that keeps him from turning into a werewolf. Working together, they get into all kinds of scrapes trying to retrieve it. I don't feel like I am doing this one justice, because it was a great read. I liked Shelby and Austin a lot, and must say I'm really looking forward to Davis' next book, The Clearing(April 2010), which has time travel!

Books that weren't quite right for my library: Avi's Murder at Midnight; a renaissance setting, but it had magic in it, so it wasn't quite historical fiction. Interesting enough, but tough sell here. Shaw's One of the Survivors; her Boy From the Basement and Black-eyed Suzie are popular here, but no one ever asks for books about people recovering from the physical and psychological trauma of a fire. Beaudoin's Fade to Blue was more of a high school book, although the cover would certainly appeal to any goth students. Kelly's My Big Feet was a bit too didactic, plus available in softcover.


Bookworm said...

Both Shiver and NCW are in my TBR pile...and I am DEFINITELY on Team Jacob...or at least Team Taylor. (:

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