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    Review of WOLF MOON by Charles de Lint (see his website)

    Puffin, January 2004 (original edition Signet 1988)

    Kern, a werewolf shapechanger, barely escapes from a harper-hunter and finds himself in a home. Since he turned werewolf, Kern has been on the run, hated and feared by everyone--both human and wolf. Now, he keeps his secret close, pretends to be purely human, and gradually falls in love with Ainsy, the innkeeper. He even makes friends with the inn's dog--by becoming were by night, establishing dominance, and then going for a purely canine hunt.

    Just when Kern is starting to think that he can have a normal life, he gets word that the harper, Tuiloch, plans on spending the winter in the neighborhood. And Tuiloch can see through any disguise. Tuiloch doesn't just want to kill Kern, he wants to destroy him, starting by eliminating the trust and love that Kern had created with his new family. And Tuiloch, with his harper magic, can do just that. It isn't long before Kern is on the run again, but this time he has friends to worry about--friends that Tuiloch hypnotically controls, and that Tuiloch doesn't at all mind using in Kern's destruction.

    Author Charles de Lint (see more reviews of stories by de Lint) has carved out a niche for himself as a leading writer of contemporary fantasy. WOLF MOON is an early book (set in a medieval fantasy world), lacks some of the sensual nature of his more mature writing, and is a fairly linear story. Although it is simpler than de Lint's later works, he does a fine job establishing Kern's problems and making the loss of his new family all the more poignant for the fact that he knew it would have to happen. WOLF MOON is a compelling quick read.

    Three Stars

    Reviewed 2/21/04

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