By Maggie Stiefvater
Scholastic Press, $18.99, 400 pages
In the two previous books of the Shiver trilogy, Maggie Stiefvater introduced us to teens who “shift” into wolves during the long, cold months in Minnesota and resume their human lives during the warmer summer. Sam and Grace have fallen in love but are doomed to be apart because of the ways the wolf bites they have experienced have affected them.
“Koenig arrived at Beck’s house at noon, dressed in a crisp maroon polo shirt and jeans that I thought he’d probably ironed. He drove a pristine gray Chevy truck that he may have ironed as well.”
In Forever, Sam waits for Grace to return to her human form for the summer, even as he finds out that the men in the area have decided it’s time to kill all the wolves once and for all, including Beck, Sam’s father figure, who is now permanently a wolf.
Stiefvater has created a whole stable of complex, interesting characters whose points of view crisscross the pages of her books. Sam and Grace are the main characters, but the feelings and fates of the troubled Cole and the entitled, closed-off Isabel become just as important to readers as those of Sam and Grace. This is the last book in the series, a fitting conclusion to a set of books that have been thoughtful, poetic and quietly powerful.
Reviewed by Cathy Carmode Lim