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Title: What I Did On My Summer Vacation
Fandom: Teen Wolf
Pairing: Derek/Stiles
Categories: AU, First Time, Actual Wolf Derek Hale
Length: Super!Epic (118,749 words)
Warnings: None

Author on LJ: N/A
Author Website: Grimm

Review: The theme this week is your favorite cliché. In the Teen Wolf fandom, that would probably have to be Actual Wolf Derek Hale. A number of stories have the Beacon Hills werewolves turning into actual wolves, rather than the beta form they assume on the show. Not only is "What I Did On My Summer Vacation" a fantastic example of Actual Wolf Derek Hale, but it also reinterprets a number of other Teen Wolf clichés in a fresh and unexpected way.

In "What I Did On My Summer Vacation," Stiles's dad takes a new job while Stiles is off at college, as the sheriff of a tiny town called Beacon Hills. When summer vacation rolls around, Stiles visits his dad in his new home. It doesn't take him long to realize that there's a lot more to Beacon Hills than meets the eye -- and that his dad knows something he isn't telling him.

Where to even start with this story? Like I said, much of its charm is how it reinterprets fandom clichés. Grimm takes that "Beacon Hills is a magnet for the supernatural" cliché and runs with it. This is a Beacon Hills where everybody is in the know except for Stiles, and I loved seeing how the open secret of the supernatural subtly changed the town and its characters. It was also hilarious to see the sheriff lying to Stiles about werewolves, rather than the other way around! This story also portrays Laura Hale differently than a lot of fanfiction does. She's not the alpha here, just a beta struggling with the loss of her family. That vulnerability gives her a touch of realism I don't always see in Teen Wolf stories, where Laura is often painted as a 100% confident bad-ass leader. I also love the mythology and the magic system in this story. And of course, I loved the romance between Derek and Stiles! It's slower than most slow-burn stories, with Derek spending much of it as a wolf. But I loved their gradually-built friendship and trust, as well as their occasional stumbling blocks.

What I Did On My Summer Vacation

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
levanera
Jul. 23rd, 2014 10:46 pm (UTC)
I just read this for the first time a few days ago! What a coincidence. It was great. I especially loved the town!pack, and Laura, and everything, my gosh.
ariss_tenoh
Jul. 25th, 2014 08:13 pm (UTC)
Thanks for reccing this! I really enjoyed this story.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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