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Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Wolf Letters by Will Schaefer

Title: The Wolf Letters
Author: Will Schaefer

Release Date: 1st May 2011

Genre: Adult Historical Thriller

My Rating: 4/5

Southern England, August 1936. An artefact from the dark ages – a wolf carved in jet – is stolen from the archaeology department of St Matthew’s College. A man is murdered in an antique store.

Historian George Haye translates two eighth-century documents for the investigating police, and is very soon nearly murdered himself. What is it about the documents? Aren’t they just letters from one Englishman to another? And why does the wolf from St Matthew’s seem to be at the black heart of all the evil that unfolds around him?

Haye is desperate. He must find the letters which lead him to the wolf, or he will die.

But Haye will find something else. Something he could never have imagined – something long forgotten, something terrifying

My Review:
As you can probably already tell, The Wolf Letters is very different to what I usually review. Aside from YA, I love a good thriller and when I was presented with The Wolf Letters, I couldn't pass up the chance of reading it, especially since it comes from a debut Perth author.

Now I am not much for historical reads. The book is set in both the 8th century and also England in 1936, and so you may think my reading it is a little strange, but despite its time period, I found myself ploughing through the novel. While I did find the first couple of chapters a little slow, I think this may have been due to getting my head around the time period and that the story was only just beginning.

And what a mystery it is. Our hero, George Haye is pulled into a chilling, century old mystery that involves 8th century letters, a jet wolf, unexplainable murders committed by unlikely suspects and a connection to the occult that he never would have believed a day earlier.

Haye is a genuinely nice guy, who is 'recruited' by Detective Sergeant Aage Nielsen to translate letters between Ohthere, an 8th century solider-priest, and Bishop Ecgwulf, detailing Ohthere's exile from England and his subsequent journey through Europe and the mysterious jet wolf which is causing so much trouble in 1936. As more letters surface and strange events continue to arise, Haye and Nielsen travel to Wales in search of answers, unsure of who to trust, with shocking and devastating consequences.

The biggest compliment I can probably pay The Wolf Letters is that I am someone who does not read historical fiction, and have never really been a fan of learning about it in the first place. But, I read this book in less than two days and thoroughly enjoyed it.

While I haven't read Dan Brown's books (my act of rebellion on the book industry), I have seen the films and in my opinion, if you liked his books, you will like this.

So if historical is not your thing but suspense, mystery and intrigue is, this may still be one of you. And if historical fiction is your cup of tea, then you have found a gem.

A fantastic debut.

For more information or to purchase a copy, head to the website.


  1. Great review Jess! I am not a historical fiction fan either so like you reading one in two days I would consider high praise :)

  2. haha, this book sounds like it would make my head hurt (but in a good way)

    and hi five for not reading dan brown. me either, haha. just completely not interested :)

    loved your review though...

    xx Nomes

  3. Great book definitely worth buying. Cant wait to see what the author comes up with next!

  4. I am lucky enough to have enough of an acquaintance with the author (he reads my stuff, I read his) that he sent me an advance copy, which I am utterly eating alive. It's certainly up there with Dan Brown's best, and leaves his worst in the dust - while all the time being more skillfully written. Such an easy read for pretty heavy material.


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