Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Last Werewolf by Glen Duncan

I first heard about The Last Werewolf on Books on the Nightstand, my favorite book related podcast.  On the podcast there is always a segment titled two books we can't wait for you to read in which the two hosts each recommend a book.  I've been told that this book falls into the genre "literary horror."  Horror is one of the few genres that I have never really read but the enthusiastic review on the podcast made me think I should give it a try.

The book begins with the story of Jake Marlowe, a werewolf.  He kills and eats people once month on the full moon.  The rest of the time he tries to keep a step ahead of WOCOP (World Organization for the Control of Occult Phenomena).  WOCOP has hunting and killing werewolves for centuries and they're so good that now there's only one left.  Jake is ready to die.  He is not without guilt for the people he has eaten and he feels the loneliness of being the last of his kind.  But just as he is ready to surrender to death, suddenly various groups want to keep him alive.  Jake doesn't know quite what to think or how to feel about his supposed saviors.  Then something happens that gives him a reason to live.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes supernatural fiction with the caveat that there are graphic descriptions of sex and violence - according to Jake a werewolf has three main imperatives: f**k, kill and eat and there is plenty of all three in the book - so for those offended by graphic language this book is probably not for you.   I don't know much about the author but if I had go guess I'd say he was an English major which is both a blessing and a curse.  There are some passages so beautifully written that I added them to the list of quotes I keep.  At other times I felt the story got bogged down by the literary loops of someone who seemed to be trying really hard to impress.  Still it was worth the read.

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