Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Wolf Gift ~ Anne Rice

The Wolf Gift ~ Anne Rice

Let me start off by saying Anne Rice is truly a master story teller. This is actually the first of her novels that I have read (other that The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty and thats obviously a very different kind of book) I've had The Vampire Lestat sitting on my TBR shelf for some time so I think its time to dust it off and get to reading it. Just a warning there are going to be some spoilers in this review.

Now onto the description (taken from Netgalley)

The time is the present.

The place, the rugged coast of northern California. A bluff high above the Pacific. A grand mansion full of beauty and tantalizing history set against a towering redwood forest.

A young reporter on assignment from the San Francisco Observer. . . an older woman, welcoming him into her magnificent, historic family home that he has been sent to write about and that she must sell with some urgency . . . A chance encounter between two unlikely people . . . an idyllic night-shattered by horrific unimaginable violence. . .The young man inexplicably attacked-bitten-by a beast he cannot see in the rural darkness . . . A violent episode that sets in motion a terrifying yet seductive transformation as the young man, caught between ecstasy and horror, between embracing who he is evolving into and fearing who-what-he will become, soon experiences the thrill of the wolf gift.

As he resists the paradoxical pleasure and enthrallment of his wolfen savagery and delights in the power and (surprising) capacity for good, he is caught up in a strange and dangerous rescue and is desperately hunted as "the Man Wolf," by authorities, the media and scientists (evidence of DNA threaten to reveal his dual existence). . . As a new and profound love enfolds him, questions emerge that propel him deeper into his mysterious new world: questions of why and how he has been given this gift; of its true nature and the curious but satisfying pull towards goodness; of the profound realization that there are others like him who may be watching-guardian creatures who have existed throughout time and may possess ancient secrets and alchemical knowledge and throughout it all, the search for salvation for a soul tormented by a new realm of temptations, and the fraught, exhilarating journey, still to come, of being and becoming, fully, both wolf and man.

   Lets start by talking about Anne Rice's interesting take on the werewolf. Rice moves towards a more traditional Wolfman style werewolf who, as apposed to transforming into a full wolf, becomes a large man covered in fur with both wolf and human qualities. The "Morphenkinder" as Rice calls them are a race of human hybrids. Not truly man not truly wolf they are drawn to help others or more accurately the Man Wolf is drawn to the smell of evil. 
   The moral dilemma for Reuben, the main character, arrises when he is forced to face his Man Wolf actions while in his human form. How can a human man raised in high society not feel remorse when he brutally kills another human being? But what if that murder was to save an innocent? Does enjoying that killing make it wrong? These are the questions young Reuben is faced with as he learns what and who he has become. 
   Rice has the ability to slip truly moral questions into a fast paced and truly interesting story line. I enjoyed the fact that her Morphenkinder retain there human consciousness while in their wolf form. It is also important to note that they don't shift by the faze of the moon but rather by their own personal choice. The characters are rich and enjoyable. Felix is a man you would like instantly in person which makes his character seem to jump off the page. You can easily feel the love building between Reuben and Laura, which can be tough with such a demanding, fast paced story.
   Overall everything seemed to flow beautifully. I had such trouble putting it down that I was up till far too late reading. It has been a while since a book has grabbed me from the first page, but this one did right away. I only wish that I had purchased it in paperback so that I could pass it around to friends.
   The Wolf Gift by Anne Rice gets a 5 out of 5 stars and should be pushed to the top of your TBR pile!


  1. I'm still learning from you, as I'm trying to achieve my goals. I definitely love reading all that is posted on your blog.Keep the information coming. I loved it!
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  2. Can't wait to read this one!! I have heard nothing but greatness about it!