While I focused most of my efforts last month on the books published under the Penguin Horror imprint, I did set some time aside to read a number of non-horror titles, and by far my favourite was my October book by Charles de Lint, Wolf Moon.
Taking place in a realm of High Fantasy (a world of magic with no obvious connection to Earth), the novel is actually a rather small story of a Harper (a travelling musician) and his attempts to kill an escaped werewolf. The twist is that the werewolf is actually our protagonist, and the Harper the villain. For de Lint, who in every previous book he had written, to take the travelling musician (usually a good guy and protagonist in books such as Harper of the Grey Rose, Mulengo, and The Riddle of the Wren), the idea of focusing the story on the monster, and more importantly, making him sympathetic, was a lot of fun and added a lot of heart to the story.
The main character, Kern begins the story on the run from the evil Harper Tuiloch, and throughout the story finds friends, love, and perhaps even a home, if only he can find a way to outwit or defeat a man who uses his control of music and magic to control those around him.
Although the story doesn’t have the usual quest structure of high fantasy novels, its focus on the characters surrounding a small inn that Kern comes across makes the book a joy to read. A lot of fun, and yet another reason I’m really excited to be working my way through the works of Mr. de Lint.
1 month ago