Book Review: The Wolf Gift by Anne Rice

The excitement I had when I heard of this book, after learning that Anne Rice wasn’t going to write another Vampire Chronicle book – recent news is that there is one due for release sometime this year – I wondered if all her new books were going to be heavily religious themed.

In comes The Wolf Gift, the first book in The Wolf Gift Chronicles, which essentially the set up for the next book.  Here is the blurb from Goodreads:

‘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.’

It sounds interesting, almost like what Interview with the Vampire was, only slightly different, in that it’s not a biography tale and it’s werewolves.

Yet while reading this book, something was off.  Anne Rice loves to put a lot of detail into her books, to fully describe the house and the surrounds, to get the reader into that feeling that they are actually there.  It’s a classic bit of Anne Rice writing, yet for all the descriptions of the house, the area and how the light shines, the characters are just bland and boring.  There is nothing to them, they are just flat.

The main character just seems to be stuck in there, with no real thought given to him, not likeable features or unlike-able.

It’s almost like the magic and myth was used up for the previous Vampire Chronicles, although it is clear from this book that Anne Rice wanted to try her hand in a different realm of the supernatural, it falls flat, with nothing really giving the reader a hook to stay with the book to the bitter end.

Sadly this is a 1 star out of 5, the book was something that I really had to force myself into reading.

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