|Series: The Werewolf Whisperer #1
|Date of Publishing: October 7th 2014
|Genre: fantasy, contemporary, urban fantasy
|Number of pages: 408
|Author’s website: Bonita Gutierrez and Camilla Ochlan
Quote of the Book
“Please, release your Hounds.” As Lucy had anticipated, the corny line got a titter from the audience. She didn’t have to look at Xochitl to know her eyes were rolling.
The Hounds all stood, politely waiting for Lucy’s command.
“Everybody sit!” Lucy gestured with her hand and all the Hounds sat. From the sideline, Xochitl clicked the training clicker, reminding every Hound parent to get out theirs from pockets, purses and fanny packs. The random clicks that followed amused the audience.
“Treat your Hound,” Lucy suggested. A row of Hound parents treated their seated Hound with anything from bacon to cheese to bits of hotdog, which they had pulled out from little plastic baggies along with the training clicker.
Please keep in mind these are personal thoughts only, and this does not mean the book have been eliminated by all the group or are a final choice to go through to the semi’s. We will update this post as the judges read along and add their opinions. Once a final decision has been made whether this book will remain or be eliminated, we will note it accordingly.
The Kyon Virus (also known as KV, Wereflu, or The Affliction) is a sudden-onset viral infectious disease that attacks the entire body, transforming the muscular and skeletal structures of the host. The Kyon Virus manifests in hosts in a variety of ways, leading to the three-tiered classification of the Were: Hound, Feral and Werebeast. No known cure for the Kyon Virus exists, nor can the symptoms be treated. It is estimated at the initial outbreak (see K-Day) one in twenty Californians contracted the disease.
Ferocious werewolf virus hits L.A.
Werebeasts rampage through the streets.
The city’s in chaos.
Lucy Lowell jumps right in to help the Afflicted. And she has a bizarre knack for making the feral creatures sit and stay.
Her sister-in-arms, Xochi Magaña – a fierce drink-slinger with an affinity for shiny, sharp weapons – is desperate to free her Werebeast brother.
Thrust into the space between violence and death, the two women try to battle the tragic fallout of the werewolf apocalypse.
But keeping Angelenos from clawing each other to bits is not all it’s cracked up to be.
Welcome to the werewolf apocalypse. Hope you’re locked and loaded.
You’ll chew right through this urban fantasy like a hound through a milk bone.
Grab your copy today.
Song of the Book
Couldn’t be any other (just pretend that London is LA).
Werewolves of London by Warren Zevon
Jen’s Review – 3.5/10
A lot has changed in Lucy’s world – two years ago she was on the animal cruelty task-force breaking up dog-fighting rings. Now, Lucy, is basically Cesar Millan, with a gift for training our furry loved ones – they just happen to be Werewolves and our family and friends that have been hit with the Kyon Virus. In some respects, maybe life hasn’t changed that much for Lucy after all, she’s still a champion to the underdog. wink, wink
This tells the story in a past (two years ago) timeline and a present timeline.
The past introduces us to Lucy and Xochitl (pronounced SO-cheel), a bit of their families, how they ended up working together, and when the Kyon Virus first started showing up.
The present time has our girls operating the equivalent of an obedience school/camp, running interference rescuing hounds from being caught by the Catchers, and plot-wise hinting at more to the whole Kyon Virus outbreak and that there may be more to Lucy’s Alpha-gift.
I liked the girls. It’s hard to find UF with a couple of lady leads. Smart, funny, and tough – kind of Thelma and Louise meets Cagney and Lacey – their friendship was a highlight for me.
This gives us Girl Power characters and an imaginative spin on werewolves and has fun doing it.
This was such an interesting concept and I could see that the authors had a hoot coming up with some of the stuff in this story. It’s totally whacked in places but entertaining when you just roll with it, and my eyes were doing some seriously hard rolling at times – especially at that whole Smokey and the Bandit inspired scene.
The story takes it time getting its plot on the road, and detours frequently – there is a lot of filler, something I wouldn’t have minded so much considering how entertaining it could be at times, except this ended in very non-end kind of way, leaving us hanging with nothing really answered. I was a little disappointed and it made it hard for me to overlook a lot of the other issues – story jumpiness, missing context and explanations (e.g. Kai dognapped but appears out of nowhere later) etc. that I was having and one of the more frustrating story devices; timeline jumping and the use of inconsequential tidbit and information saving to hook us to continue.
After four-hundred pages I expect a satisfying stopping place or if it ends on a cliffie, to at least have a lot more answers to tide me over if I want to continue.
- There is a nice diverse cast of characters.
- It’s a unique take on werewolves that kept me reading for the first half. Hope for an ending as unique in concept, kept me through the rest.
- Some Spanish phrases sprinkled throughout – I maybe know twelve words of Spanish and for the most part I understood intent when it wasn’t directly translated. It helps that a lot of it was cussing and words of exasperation, there’s also a glossary in the back (I, of course found this after finishing the book).
- Tightening things up in the timelines and losing some of those out of the blue filler scenes etc. probably could have shaved a good fifty or so pages without being missed.
- I got a huge kick out of Kai – it was hard not to picture him as a puppy with some of his antics.
- Imogen made me think of Cruella DeVil.
- I’m afraid the ending docked my score quite a bit because it affected my inability to overlook other issues that I might have ignored in favour of the fun.
Timy’s Review – 5.5/10
I have some mixed feelings about this one. Nowadays I don’t read much urban fantasy, though I have nothing against the genre – it got me into fantasy in the first place – in general. This is a fast paced one, with a double timeline – on one hand we follow Lucy and Xichotl in the present as they try to make business out of taming people who turned into Hounds or Feral (those affected by the virus can turn into Hound, Feral and Beast depending, which means they have different characteristics and thus different behaviours). On the other hand, we learn about how they got to know each other and what actually happened 2 years ago when the virus broke out in California. The idea is neat, and it really is an easy read. Lucy and Xochitl compliment each other well. Even so, somehow the idea of people being kept as pets – even if they are affected by a virus and all – just not sitting well with me. From the look of things, events really start to happen around the time I stopped reading. Though I don’t really feel the urge to continue, I can recommend it if you like a fast paced urban fantasy featuring werewolves, a conspiracy theory and two kick ass female leads.
Nick’s Review – 3.5/10
This one had an uphill battle with me from the get-go simply because I am not a huge fan of Urban Fantasy. For me to enjoy an Urban Fantasy book, it really has to blow me away and the story has to be utterly compelling. Unfortunately this book struck none of those chords with me. The two main characters are fun-loving and snarky but there wasn’t a lot of depth to them in my opinion. They almost seemed like caricatures and this didn’t help me get invested in what happened to them during their adventures. There is also a significant amount of bitingly dark humor in this book which at times got distracting. I really never could get past what I perceived as frequent periods of unnecessary banter and the werewolf angle wasn’t enough to keep my interest. Just didn’t do it for me and so I had to check out and move on.