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Promise of the Wolves: A Novel (The Wolf Chronicles Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Dorothy Hearst
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (151 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $16.00
Kindle Price: $10.38
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Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc

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Book Description





At least that's what the wolves of the Wide Valley believe. Until a young wolf dares to break the rules -- and forever alters the relationship between wolves and the humans who share their world.

This is the story of such a wolf. Born of a forbidden mixed-blood litter and an outcast after her mother is banished, Kaala is determined to earn a place in the Swift River pack. But her world is turned upside down when she saves a human girl from drowning. Risking expulsion from their pack and exile from the Wide Valley, Kaala and her young packmates begin to hunt with the humans and thus discover the long-hidden bond between the two clans. But when war between wolves and humans threatens, Kaala learns the lies behind the wolf 's promise. Lies that force her to choose between safety for herself and her friends and the survival of her pack -- and perhaps of all wolf- and humankind.

Set 14,000 years ago, Promise of the Wolves takes us to a land where time is counted in phases of the moon, distance is measured in wolflengths, and direction by the scent of the nearest trail. Years of research into the world of wolves combines with mythical tale-telling to present a fantastical adventure set in a world filled with lore.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The debut of former Jossey-Bass senior editor Hayes is a crackling foray into a dangerous past, the first of a projected trilogy. On Wide Valley plain 14,000 years ago, wolf Kaala is born into the Swift River pack—a half-breed outcast with Outsider blood. As she grows into adulthood, the spirited pup continues to come into conflict with pack leader Ruuqo. She also sneaks off to be with humans, who are encroaching on wolf territory and who often drive the wolves from their kills. Fraternization is strictly forbidden, but as Kaala's mother has foreseen in dreams, it may also be the key to saving every wolf and human in the valley. Hayes's remarkable fluency when writing in Kaala's voice is immediately absorbing. The mythologies of the societies she invents are underdeveloped, but the relationships between the human characters and the wolf characters are keenly felt, and the conflicts sharply imagined. Hayes's keen interpretations of wolf behavior, senses and sensibilities will enchant paranormal fans and animal lovers alike. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School—The first in a proposed trilogy, this story set in a wilderness 14,000 years ago is told from the wolves' viewpoint. Kaala is a young female whose relationship with her pack is strained by the portentous crescent moon mark on her chest and her affinity for humans. Her bond with them is formed when she rescues a young girl from drowning. Through repeated conversations with Greatwolves, spiritwolves, and Ancients, the young wolf comes to realize that she is the latest in a line of mixed bloods who have the opportunity and challenge of forming an alliance with humans in order to remind them of the interconnectivity of life and to prevent them from destroying their world. The road Kaala travels to ultimate understanding is a tortured one that, at times, borders on the tiresome, but this is a minor drawback in a book whose strength is in the depiction of life in and among wolf packs. Clearly, Hearst has done prodigious research, and her story is infused with a great depth of understanding. Her depiction of the animals' lives, from raising pups to hunting strategies to the protocol of both inter- and intra-pack associations, makes her lupine cast both captivating and believable. A favorite character, however, may be the raven Tlitoo, who plays the part of a Sancho Panza sidekick and provides some comic relief. With its engaging blend of animal science and mythology, and a strong environmental message, Promise will appeal to a variety of teens.—Dori DeSpain, Fairfax County Public Library, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Product Details

  • File Size: 603 KB
  • Print Length: 353 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition (June 15, 2008)
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
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  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #190,058 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
50 of 51 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Promising Start to a New Fantasy Trilogy May 20, 2008
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Promise of the Wolves is an enthralling and enjoyable "prehistoric fantasy" set 14,000 years ago, when we humans were just starting to get organized. The book centers on a mythical culture of wolves. One of the book's conceits is that back then, all the higher species of creatures had been able to communicate with each other verbally, but they were beginning to lose this ability, especially among the humans, whose changing lifestyles were already beginning to upset the balance of nature. There is a strong ecological theme, in fact, that runs throughout the book.

The story is told from the point of view of Kaala, a young member of the Swift River wolf pack who has difficulty fitting into her adoptive family. Their leader Ruuquo distrusts her because she bears a moon-like mark that brands her as potential bad luck for the pack. The wolves' lives are guided by ancient legend and a code of conduct enforced by the leaders of the valley, the Greatwolves. The foremost of these prohibits humans and wolves from associating with one another, because ironically, they are so much alike, and the last time they interacted, a war ensued between them. However, Kaala feels an inexorable pull toward the humans, especially after rescuing a human girl, TaLi, from drowning. As Kaala feels more ostracized by Ruuquo, she feels more of a need to be with and hunt with the humans, and she is guided in that direction by a spirit-wolf whom only she can see. The internal and external conflict this eventually creates is what drives the latter half of the book. And the door is left open just enough at the end to set up the sequel to this planned trilogy.

The characterization and dialog, particularly by the wolves, are other reasons to enjoy this book, which seems geared primarily at a YA audience.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The beginning of an exciting new series April 22, 2008
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This book has been compared to 'Watership Down' and 'The Clan of the Cave Bear', both intriguing, innovative books and a lot to live up to. After the first twenty or so pages I discovered that it definitely lived up to these claims and more.

The story centers on a wolf pack that lived 10,000 years ago. A young wolf, barely accepted by her pack has to struggle and fight for her life from the first day she emerges from her den. The product of an unauthorized breeding she escapes death only because she has an unusual marking, one that a legend claims will be worn by a wolf who will change all of wolfkind. As she tries to learn the lessons needed to become accepted into the pack the young wolf, Kaala, finds that everything she learns only brings her more questions.

This is, not only the first volume of a planned trilogy, but also the author's first published novel. While it is an intriguing and innovative work it does have some 'first novel' flaws. The author has, for the most part, told a most original story but from time to time other novels appear in the background, hopefully as the series progresses Hearst's own voice will grow stronger.

The biggest problem with this book long until I can get my hands on the rest of the series? I have to know what happens next!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
While I haven't read CLAN OF THE CAVE BEAR yet, I don't like the comparison of this book to Watership Down. The only similarity I can see between the two is that the animals are able to communicate as humans do. Besides that, the two books are very different. PROMISE OF THE WOLVES is a fantastical tale of a mythical past in which the future of the world was determined, involving both humans and wolves, while WATERSHIP DOWN involved an isolated case without mysticism or significant human interaction. That being said, WATERSHIP DOWN is the superior book.

Dorothy Hearst's first novel is targeted to the teenage reading age, nothing too graphic, but fast-paced and fairly exciting. The characters are easy to love and their individual personalities are developed nicely. The plot of the story left some to be desired in my opinion. Based off the feeling that present day life must have gone awry sometime in the past (explaining the current terrible state of the world and our complicity in making it what it is), this book tells of a time when men and animals just weren't that different from one another, and actually lived with mutual respect. To some, I'm sure its appealing, but to me it just seems a bit silly.

Overall, this is an enjoyable book that I'd highly recommend to younger readers. It is the first in a three book trilogy, so if you don't like waiting long periods for the end of a story, don't pick this one up for a while.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent debut! May 22, 2008
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I selected this book from the vine program because I expected it to be like Fire Bringer, Watership Down: A Novel, or even Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh (Aladdin Fantasy) - books that anthropomorphize animals. And to a degree it was. The wolves of the story do think and reason. The opening page of the review copy has a message to the reader, ..."you will accept (and almost forget) that Kaala and her companions are wolf. Or, you'll forget that you are not." This statement could not be more true! While "Promise of the Wolves" is like the books I mentioned, it is more like The Earth's Children series, in particular The Clan of the Cave Bear, by Jean Auel - it was that good. Kaala is a mix with "outsider blood." She should have been killed at birth, as Ayla should have been left for dead. Both are rich stories of young females fighting for their place in a pack (clan) that does not want them. Both defy tradition to make themselves stronger. And they will cause monumental changes to the world. The different species of animals are akin to the different clans and tribes Ayla encounters. The manner in which the story is told is also similar. Hearst uses introductory sentences like "The legends say that..." and "It is said..." This is common in literature of this nature. It is almost as if Hearst read Earths Children and asked herself, what would that time have been like from an animal's perspective? I do not mean to say that this is a rip-off. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The story is unique from the point of view of the wolves and their way...
I could not put the book down. The story is unique from the point of view of the wolves and their way of life from an author who writes a good story line.
Published 12 days ago by dyana howard
5.0 out of 5 stars Howling Good Read
I love stories about animals. Interesting concept, the life of a wolf pack told via their own voices. Are the rules of the Pack different from society at large? Read more
Published 19 days ago by lollipop
4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating read for fantasy and nature lovers
Loved the premise of how men and wolves came together in a bond that has lasted for millions of years
not as deep as partnership down but almost as enjoyable
Published 20 days ago by PCELLIOTT
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Unusual and interesting. Looking forward to the rest of the trigology
Published 20 days ago by adelek
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good moving..lpved the character development of the wolves.
Published 28 days ago by Joan Loretta Munn
5.0 out of 5 stars WONDERFUL!
I have always loved and supported wolves. They have been given a bad reputation for the most part unfairly and a wise elderly farmer once told me to raise ten percent more for the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Barbara
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
I thought the book was well written and kept my interest up. I would rate the book 41/2 stars
Published 1 month ago by Rhonda Bridge
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
This is a well written book. It is both imaginative and entertaining.
Published 1 month ago by n. burns
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read
Published 1 month ago by Brian K. Curry
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good book; only disappointment it is not speech enabled
Very good book; only disappointment it is not speech enabled, so I will not buy the next 2 books which are listed. My eyes are too tired.
Published 1 month ago by Patricia Nessell
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More About the Author

The Wolf Chronicles trilogy was inspired by my fascination with our relationship with dogs. It has always amazed me that we treat dogs as part of our family and they treat us as part of the their packs, and I wanted to explore why.

I had been trying to write for about ten years when the wolves barged into my apartment, demanding that I tell their story. Since they can't type very well (they keep hitting the space bar by mistake), I agreed.

I have been an (unsuccessful) actor, a book editor, and a martial artist. I can walk on my hands, but cannot juggle.

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