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The Wolves of Andover: A Novel Hardcover – November 8, 2010

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Reagan Arthur Books; First Edition edition (November 8, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316068624
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316068628
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #904,618 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Kent doesn't disappoint in this prequel to The Heretic's Daughter, taking readers back to Massachusetts before the Salem witch trials as strong-willed 23-year-old Martha Allen falls in love with strong-armed hired hand Thomas Carrier. Rumor has it that Thomas, while living in England under another name, played a role in the execution of King Charles I. Now both he and Martha work for Martha's cousin on her farm and are brought together with a little help from the wolves stalking the farm. But after Thomas saves Martha from a wolf attack, he discovers wild animals are not the only dangers lurking in the Massachusetts woods: assassins have arrived from London to capture Charles I's executioner, said to be living outside Boston under an assumed name. Kent weaves in references to her first novel while creating an immersive stand-alone where Old World corruption clashes with New World opportunity; London bustles as civilization is carved out of the Massachusetts wilderness; and colonial self-reliance contrasts with dealing for favors in Restoration England. Kent brings colonial America to life by poking into its dark corners and finding its emotional and personal underpinnings. (Nov.) (c)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

This prequel to Kent’s The Heretic’s Daughter (2008) focuses on the early life of outspoken, tart-tongued Martha Allen, from whom the author is descended. Set in seventeenth-century Massachusetts, the novel finds the still-unmarried 23-year-old Martha being sent to live with her cousins as a domestic. Once there, she finds herself intrigued by a hired man named Thomas Carrier. A Welshman, he is the tallest man she has ever seen and one of the most taciturn. But when he saves her from two marauding wolves, intrigue turns to attraction. But other wolves—human ones this time—may pose an even greater danger to the two. Who is Thomas, in fact? What part might he have played in the overthrow and beheading of England’s Charles I? And why have a clutch of dangerous assassins come from England in search of him? An example of the currently popular genre-blender, the book is part historical fiction, part romance, and part suspense. Skillfully meshing these various elements, the author’s latest effort is bound to please fans of each. --Michael Cart

More About the Author

Kathleen Kent is the author of three best-selling novels. Her first novel, The Heretic's Daughter, has been published in 15 countries and is a recipient of the David J. Langum Sr. award for American historical fiction. The book chronicles the life of Martha Carrier, the author's grandmother back 9 generations, during the Salem witch trials of 1692, and is based in part on family stories passed down through generations.

Her second novel, The Traitor's wife, explores the life of Thomas Carrier, husband to Martha; a man who was a soldier during the English Civil War and who is rumored to be one of the executioners of King Charles I of England.

The author's latest novel, The Outcasts, is set in Reconstruction Era Texas and follows the paths of a young woman fleeing a life of prostitution and a newly-minted lawman on the hunt for a killer of men, women and children across the frontier. It is the recipient of the American Library Association's 2014 top choice for Historical Fiction.

A short story titled Coincidences Can Kill You was published in the crime anthology, Dallas Noir. She is currently working on a novel-length work based on this short story.

The author lives in Dallas, Texas.

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Customer Reviews

There is mystery, love and danger in her story.
C. Wong
The second story line of the men felt much like "filler" - and really gave no sustinance to the story.
K. Mitchell
I highly recommend both books, but again, please read HD first so you can appreciate Wolves.
Mary T. Ralston

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Tribute Books Reviews VINE VOICE on November 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover
"The life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short."
Thomas Hobbes, The Leviathan
English political philosopher (1588-1679)

Life in 1673 Massachusetts lived up to Hobbes' expectations. In THE WOLVES OF ANDOVER, Kathleen Kent offers a realistic depiction of survival through the eyes of colonial woman, Martha Allen. With a sharp eye for detail, Kent does not shy away from historical accuracy in order to create a romance full of beauty and lightness. Instead, she depicts rustic settlers living in primitive conditions in close proximity to livestock. Many are hanging on by a thread against Indian attack, disease and poverty.

Martha's strength is that she rises to meet these challenges. Having reached the age of 20 without a husband, her father can no longer afford to care for her. Martha is sent to live with her cousin, Patience and her family as a servant. Patience is suffering through a difficult pregnancy and requires help around the house. Martha takes on the role of housekeeper caring for Patience's children, Will and Joanna; her husband, Daniel and their indentured servants, John and Thomas.

When a pack of wolves starts terrorizing the countryside, Martha forges a bond with Thomas despite his being 30 years her senior. While attempting to ensnare the lupines, his quiet, steady demeanor captures the interest of the sharp-tongued girl. While strong and physically fit, Thomas' fate lies in the hands of Patience and Daniel. His hope rests on their granting him a parcel of land upon completion of his servitude. Martha's future too is uncertain once Patience is delivered of child.

Yet affairs of the heart come second to survival in this inhospitable environment. The yard is full of mud from freezing rain.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Holly Weiss VINE VOICE on November 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Contentious Martha is sharp-tongued spinster who falls in love with mysterious hired-hand Thomas Carrier after he saves her from a wolf attack. Safety is not, however, prevalent in the 17th century rugged wilderness of colonial Massachusetts. Human wolves cloaked as people living in plain sight in the surrounding area arrive in the New World to hunt the assassins of King Charles I during the Cromwell years in England. The author deftly crafted this intrigue into this historical fiction novel while Martha navigates the difficulty of being a servant her cousin's home.

The author's intention to show the brutality and volatile nature of the early colonies is admirable, but the novel is dark. Depictions of everyday life such as using an injured lamb for bait and detailed descriptions of dog fighting are chilling. I respect the integration of the political ramifications brought on by the assassination of King Charles I, however felt tossed to and fro from scenes which did not exactly hang together set in England and on shipboard to colonial America. A firmer hand in editing would have benefitted the writing. Secondary characters called by various names such as "Duchess," Keeper of the Privy Council" forced me to turn back to previous mentions to determine to whom the author referred. Editing the many sentences beginning with "it" would have been helpful. Most enjoyable and clearly set forth are the scenes at the Massachusetts farm with Martha and Thomas.

Author Kent is a tenth generation descendent of the Carrier family. She grew up listening to stories of the Salem witch trials and reading Poe, which may explain the darkness of her writing. She calls her book a love story to her family and a tribute to those accused as being witches. Ms.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jill I. Shtulman TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 30, 2010
Format: Hardcover
There is a brutish energy in Kathleen Kent's prequel to her well-received Heretic's Daughter, a comingling of harsh animalistic dangers with politics, power and passion. The howling wolves that come for their prey are both the two-legged and the four-legged kind, and each will stop at nothing to prevail.

The book opens with the introduction of Martha Allen, a resourceful and sharp-tongued young woman who is forced to take the position of glorified servant to her weak-willed cousin Patience, who is expecting her third child in colonial Massachusetts. There she meets a giant of a man, the Welshman Thomas Carrier, a hired worker with an air of mystery. It is rumored that for the love of Oliver Cromwell's cause, he took an axe to the head of King Charles I and now has a bounty on his own head.

For Martha, Patience, Thomas and the other characters, life in the colonies is not easy. They must deal daily with threats of the plague, famished and hostile Indians, hard toil, and of course, the ever-present danger of the wolves. And the dangers lurk not in the community, but from overseas. Unbeknownst to Thomas, King Charles II has ordered a group of brutal Royalist minions to cross the ocean and bring Thomas back to be drawn and quartered for killing his father.

The two stories - that of Martha and Thomas in the colonies and the expertly trained and thuggish killers who are determined to capture Thomas - are juxtaposed, each highlighting the same theme: the courage and independence that are demanded in a time of danger and change.

Kathleen Kent does not shy away from darkness.
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