“In my family, not being able to change into wolf form is not a dark secret nor a physical illness. The ability jumps generations and people who can’t change are not shunned. They are still wolf inside, in their minds, in their instincts.”
~ J Damask, Wolf at the Door
What would you do if you found out that wolves walked amongst us, as humans?
For Jan Xu, the daughter of the heads of the pack, living with both forms is nothing more that an everyday thing. A previous spirit vigilante with other beings like her (foxes, dragons, tigers (harimau), angels etc…), she thought she’d seen the worse in her teen years. Until her estranged sister, Marianne, returns home suddenly.
Enter “Wolf at the Door”, an Urban Fantasy set in Singapore, written by local Urban Fantasy & Young Adult writer, J Damask. If you love Urban Fantasy and are intrigued in Asian Mythology and Celestial Realms, “Wolf at the Door” feeds all those needs.
The novel starts with an elaborate background on the Wolf Clan, forming the premise of this Urban Fantasy. This background is seamlessly merged with the realities that revolve around the protagonist, Jan Xu, and her family.
With the constant use of flashback and inner thoughts, readers may get confused at first, going back and forth. But the distinct sub-titles and sections keep the story organized and clear. The flashbacks don’t serve as a filler, it actually gives more background and a glimpse into Jan’s more adventurous past without being too draggy about it.
The pacing in this story is great as well – it’s not as action packed as you would hope it’ll be but it keeps you thinking throughout, especially when Marianne comes home with this enigma of a guy. The reader’s questions on this character comes out translated in Jan’s thoughts.
And just to top it all off, don’t just expect your usual “Chinese Mythological” spirit battling here. It’s not just restricted to just Asian influence and what not. The back story of it all rests on social issues that affect almost everybody. Also, it injects that pinch of Singapore without compromising on International appeal. Hence you can say that “Wolf at the Door” rests on the balance between the East and the West.
In conclusion, I’d say go get it. Coming from a person who doesn’t fancy Science Fiction and Fantasy at all, I’d recommend this. The back story and intensity of thoughts from the protagonist keeps you going and the action spelt out in Jan’s past make you flip the pages to see what’s about to happen next.
“Wolf at the Door” is released on the 4th April 2011, this coming Monday. You can get it online from Lyrical Press, click here for more information.