Book Review: Shiver by Allie Reynolds

Shiver is the kind of mystery thriller that will make it go cold down your back – and not just because it’s set in the French Alps.

The premise is simple: five friends, all former professional snowboarders, are called to a reunion at remote hotel in the French Alps – ten years after the mysterious disappearance of their friend, Saskia, at the exact same spot.

They soon figure out that everyone thinks they were invited by one of the others, and of course everyone denies it. Soon, old secrets start surfacing about the former friends, and it’s clear that someone wants to play a game with them.

The story is told through the perspective of Milla, a kind of outsider compared to the rest of the gang, consisting of Brent, Curtis, Dane and Heather, in addition to the now assumed deceased Saskia. Brent and Curtis were friends, but rivals, and Curtis and Saskia are siblings, and Saskia was a rival to everyone. Dane and Heather are married ten years later, but they weren’t always so involved.

Through flashbacks from ten years ago we learn about the complex romantic and rivaling relationships everyone appeared to have with everyone, and old feuds rise to the surface – feuds they have to try and set aside to be able to solve the mystery of Saskia’s decade old disappearance and find a way down from the mountain.

Shiver is a well-written and fast paced thriller, with a surprisingly interesting backdrop. I know nothing about snowboarding – even though I am Norwegian (yeah, I know, I’m not a good skier either), but the environment and tension around the sport fascinated me. A lot of the time, the flashbacks were more captivating than the present day mystery.

The constant bickering between old flames added fuel to the fire and kept the mystery alive, but at the same time, it almost broke it. Sometimes I just wanted to knock the heads of characters together and tell them to talk to each other, instead of going around in circles like fifteen-year-olds with a crush. But if you’ve read my reviews before, you might have noticed that I’m not a fan of overly on the nose romance. I mean, who has time for that stuff when they’re nearly freezing to death in an abandoned hotel?

But Shiver is a good book – I devoured it surprisingly fast, and I’d recommend it to any thriller fan. If you’re also partial to a bit of romance and snowboarding, this is your dream book, no doubt.

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