The Wolf Gift by Anne Rice
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
A young reporter narrowly escapes being mauled by a man wolf and soon finds himself changing into a man wolf by the light of the moon. He begins taking the law into his own hands and soon has a horde of police and scientists looking for him, as well as others of his kind...
Ever run into an old flame and try to rekindle the spark? For years, I was a devout Anne Rice fan, wolfing down the Vampire Chronicles and the Mayfair Witches books with reckless abandon. After a few years of that, I started seeing changes in our relationship. After a few disappointing books like Blackwood Farm, Anne and I parted ways. Late last year, Anne's path crossed with mine once again when I learned of the Wolf Gift. Could we recapture the old magic?
NO! And here's what went down.
I really wanted to like this book but there are many reasons why I didn't. First off, I didn't care about the main character at all. His name is Reuben, he's 23, and he drives a Porsche. While I'm sure there are likeable 23 year old Porsche drivers, Reuben is not one of them. He's a really bland character with no real traits other than inexplicably having sex with women who aren't his girlfriend and talking like a 45 year old philosophy major.
The rest of the characters are similarly thin. I know I'm supposed to think it's interesting that Reuben's brother is a priest or his mother is a doctor but they are pretty much definied by their jobs. The other man wolves are pretty interchangeable as characters.
The writing isn't very good either. It's clunky and chock full of infodumps. Maybe I'm looking back at Anne Rice's previous work through the rose colored glasses of nostalgia but I can't remember her earlier work being this badly written.
All that being said, I did find some things of value in The Wolf's Gift. I actually like the mythology she's created for her werewolves, the Chrism and so forth, as well as the origin of the species. I also like that Reuben was accepting of the change and started acting like a werewolf version of Batman. The rest of the book just didn't do it for me. It was obviously meant to the be the first book in a series and the climax of the story occurs way before the end.
Sorry Anne, maybe we'll try again in another ten years. 2 stars.
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