As a companion novel, I personally recommend that all readers of Sinner first read Shiver, Linger and Forever first. You can click on the titles to read my reviews.
I’m trusting that you’re only still reading this review as a bookworm who has previously read the prior books…
Cole St. Clair is a werewolf in L.A.
He’s going to make a new record, star in a short reality show and fan the flames of his past superstardom.
But that’s not why he’s in L.A.
He came for Isabel.
Isabel left her and Cole’s bruised, fragmented relationship mess and decided to try and make a life for herself in California.
She’s just as unhappy here as she was in Mercy Falls. It’s not working.
Cole and Isabel both have demons and could be a disaster together – yet they can’t seem to let go…
Maggie Stiefvater is one of my favorite authors now – especially after The Scorpio Races and The Raven Boys series. The Shiver trilogy is what introduced me to her, however.
Just as in the Shiver trilogy, Stiefvater writes a story with Sinner that has the fact that Cole’s a werewolf as a secondary, almost side story. In fact, it takes more a form of an addiction than anything else. Another struggle of Cole’s to heal himself – to refrain from the desire to stop being human, to stop feeling the pain of being human. Extraordinary.
Here we get raw emotion mixed in with the magical realism that is Maggie Stiefvater. We’re presented with real, flawed, damaged people – people that aren’t always very likable, but who we recognize an agonizing desire to be better – to be happy.
The attraction between Isabel and Cole is very readable, very palpable – but is also something deeper. There’s an understanding between them – a recognition of self-loathing, of a lost life and a desire for a new one.
Sinner, like the Shiver trilogy, faces the darker aspects of humanity and tosses in just enough of the paranormal to make it not a flat-out contemporary novel. It manages to highlight both genres, but primarily focuses on the human – the truth.
This isn’t a book with easy answers and I can’t say that I felt wholly satisfied with the end – but I appreciated it. Sinner was an excellent read written by a phenomenal writer.