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Random House LLC
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The Wolf Road: A Novel Kindle Edition
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|Length: 370 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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This genre-bending post-apocalyptic book is part horror story, part cat-and-mouse thriller, part modern western, and part survival tale.
Seventeen-year-old Elka can hardly remember her life before she met Trapper. For a decade now, this gruff man has been like a father to her. The two of them have lived on their own in the middle of nowhere—on the fringes of a decimated society. Trapper has taught her how to live like an animal, hunting for food and surviving in the stark wilderness.
Then one day, Elka sees Trapper's face on a wanted posted in a nearby town and learns that he's a deranged killer. She flees north in search of her real parents, but it won't be an easy journey. Along the way, Elka encounters dangerous people struggling to get by in this new world—and not only that, but she has the sneaking suspicion that she's being stalked by Trapper. Worst of all is the nagging feeling, as she confronts her own dark past, that maybe she's just as inhuman as he is. Maybe he taught her too well.
The Wolf Road is a haunting story about a feral young girl reckoning with her inner darkness and coming to terms with her own humanity. It's sort of like if Stephen King wrote The Road. While I questioned some of the author's narrative choices, I was thoroughly captivated by Elka and enjoyed taking this journey with her.
I also think - and I have this gripe with a lot of books - that some characters are too one dimensional and cartoonish at times. The magistrate is a crack shot with a shiny silver pistol, the shyster claim seller is a weasel with a weasely voice and no redeeming value, the human trafficker is a slick talking charmer with a velvet voice and looks to match... You get the point.
Bottom line is this is a great story with some twists, but it's not for those who don't like a little gore with their leisure reading.
I'm glad I bought this in hardcover, as it's a book I'll read many times again over the years.