Raised by Wolves
Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Bryn was, literally, raised by wolves … well, werewolves, not the Remus and Romolus kind. After her parents were savagely murdered by a rabid werewolf when she was four, she was rescued by Callum, werewolf himself and alpha of his pack and taken to live with them. And so she has done for the last eleven years, brought up by the only other human in the pack, Ali, who is married to a werewolf, and has felt safe under their protection. But Bryn is very independent and has many issues with the strict rules of the pack and the lack of privacy that their bond comes with (werewolves can hear each other’s thoughts). But when a new werewolf is brought to camp, she feels an immediate and strong connection to him. And once she realises what connects the two of them, there is no turning back; they have to be together, even if it means having the whole pack, and even the whole werewolf community, running after them.
I am very ambivalent with my werewolves. I loathe Jacob of Twilight fame but love Sam (and Cole!) of Wolves of Mercy Fall. So I wasn’t at all sure I was going to like that lot! Firstly I think it really shows that the author studies and teaches animal behaviour. There is a lot of reflection of the mechanisms of hierarchy, democracy within a pack, loyalty, and the roles of females in any society made the book quite an interesting read. I particularly like the latter theme which was explored quite smartly I thought, especially when dealing with Lake. Her need to hide from other werewolves, because she is a teen pure-bred werewolf and therefore a great match, had the reminiscence of how women forced in arranged marriages must feel. I think Bryn also epitomises fight against the constraints of society. Her stubbornness, her inability to see danger makes her quite an amiable character.
I felt however that there were a few lulls in the narrative and I did lost interest a few times. But it did really pick up towards the end with some real action. And man, that baddy is definitely a good specimen of the genre! He really gave me the creeps. The thing about the dresses, well, you’ll see when you read the book, I don’t want to give it away but that really gave me the chills.
All in all, I enjoyed Raised with Wolves. It was quite a smart book with a strong heroine. I wouldn’t say it is my favourite book in the genre but it is definitely well worth reading, especially if you want a little bit more than your average supernatural teen fiction.