It’s the winter of 1450 and Paris is in a panic. A pack of ravenous wolves is loose in the city, feasting on human flesh. Lorenzo Boccaccio is summoned by a Dominican inquisitor who claims that Lorenzo’s business agent is tied to the sorcery behind the wolf attacks. He demands that Lorenzo and his brother Marco help him root out the evil.
Rivals in business and love, the brothers make for a reluctant partnership. Even so, they are confident the wolves are a natural phenomenon, not men or demons traveling in wolf form.
But events soon prove that the monks and peasants are right. These are no ordinary wolves. And if they are not defeated, the city’s filthy alleys will be awash in blood.
Historical Paris during the time of the Inquisition. With werewolves. That was pretty much all I had to hear to give this a try. And I’m glad I did.
Our story follows Lorenzo, an Italian businessman visiting Paris with his brother, and Lucretia, the more complex character. She’s also from Italy, but married a wealthy Parisian (now deceased), breaking poor Lorenzo’s heart some years before the story begins. She’s also neck-deep in the middle of a conspiracy of werewolves trying to take over the city. Honestly, I don’t want to give much more away than that.
What I Liked
It was well researched historical fiction set in the Middle Ages. It did a fair job of showing the grittiness of the times and the self-righteous skewed logic with the Inquisition operated, while at the same time not painting a picture so dark as to be depressing. Wallace also created two characters I could care about and a prior one could hate even more than the actual werewolf villains.
What I Didn’t Like
There were times, particularly early in the book, where I was not totally enthralled. Indeed, reading the way Lorenzo was treated by the Inquisition–and his own brother–was disheartening.
Who I Recommend it For
I actually quite liked the book. Fans of historical fiction, historical fantasy, and werewolves should all check it out.