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I''''m a big fan of Anne Rice, so was really interested in how she''''d tackle werewolves (she being famous for vampires.) The Wolf Gift is very enjoyable, but I feel pales in comparison to her vampire novels. Portions of the plot feel a little forced and awkward, as if the author was rushing to resolve things instead of letting herself dwell on interesting themes. I also feel it jumps around a little in places - perhaps it''''s the transition between parts of the plot which is causing the awkward feeling.
That said, The Wolf Gift is still very well written - and if it wasn''''t for the normally exceptionally high standards of Anne Rice''''s writing, perhaps there wouldn''''t be any sense of disappointment. It''''s just that this novel doesn''''t seem to flow quite so well as her others.
The characters, as always, are engaging and interesting. Reuben and Felix are particularly convincing and believable. Reuben''''s girlfriend, and occasionally his mother, do annoy me however - but I get the feeling that that isn''''t entirely unintentional.
Another common factor of Anne Rice''''s book is to use the extraordinary to ask moral questions. As Reuben travels further into the world of man-wolves (one of their names in this book,) he changes greatly - and not just physically. Is this right? Is killing ever justified? What, really, is evil?
The issues the author explores through this novel are approached from a sometimes surprising, often poignant, always original, way.
This book is a must read for any fan of werewolves, or of deeply considered fiction with paranormal and/or science-fiction tones.