Friday, January 07, 2011

Review: Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Book Description via Goodreads:

Adopted by the Alpha of a werewolf pack after a rogue wolf brutally killed her parents right before her eyes, fifteen-year-old Bryn knows only pack life, and the rigid social hierarchy that controls it. That doesn't mean that she's averse to breaking a rule or two.

But when her curiosity gets the better of her and she discovers Chase, a new teen locked in a cage in her guardian's basement, and witnesses him turn into a wolf before her eyes, the horrific memories of her parents' murders return. Bryn becomes obsessed with getting her questions answered, and Chase is the only one who can provide the information she needs.

But in her drive to find the truth, will Bryn push too far beyond the constraints of the pack, forcing her to leave behind her friends, her family, and the identity that she's shaped?

Source: Won from Sya Bruce and Quercus (Thanks!)

My Thoughts:

There were lots of mixed reviews on this one. It was the reason why I was a little hesitant to read it. But I am glad that I picked this up for Out with a Bang Readathon. Because it was one of the likable werewolf stories I have ever read.

Threatened and traumatized as a child, Bryn has been taken in by Callum, the alpha of the pack. I liked how little things reminded her of that horrible night. It was just right for someone who witnessed a violent murder as a child. Images and details really do stay in the mind, long after she has recovered. For someone like Bryn, being the odd-girl-out of the pack and being the most vulnerable perhaps, has made her stand for what little she has: mental freedom and exception from orders. I really understood her. If doing that gave her power, in some ways it was also an assurance that she was no longer as weak as she was when she was a little girl – an assurance that she was safe.

The writing of Barnes was fitting, at times direct to the point, instinctual – echoing the words a wolf would speak out loud – and at other times humorous and a little sarcastic, which was very human and also very entertaining.

Callum, for some reason, reminded me of the alpha in the movie Blood & Chocolate. He was a very dedicated alpha, protective, wise and strong. I hated and admired him for his firm actions. But in the end, his decisions were all worth it because it was a part of grand scheme. Chase, Bryn’s werewolf guy was quite sweet and protective as is the usual behavior of a male were. I wished readers were given more chance to get to know him. I know that is one of the factors why I have decided to eagerly wait for Trial by Fire – the sequel. The romance thing going on between him and Bryn was abrupt, as if it had always been there. I have no idea what happens when a were finds his mate but maybe this was it – sudden attraction, sudden decision, sudden protectiveness. I liked how strong their connection was and the things they shared.

Decided and a little impulsive, Bryn along with Chase and her two friends go after the Rabid – the wolf who murdered her parents. They suspect he has been killing for decades, attacking kids from place to place. The Senate comprised of alphas, decided not to get rid of him but to make him useful. Rest won’t come until the Rabid is dead. But things were more complicated that planning a slaughter of a serial killer werewolf.

Raised by Wolves is gripping, dreamy, surprising, funny and unique. Some people did not like the ‘surprising’ quality of this novel because it probably defied logic. But for me, isn’t that the point of fiction, in a way? To defy logic, bend reality and customs and fabricate fictional truths? I recommend this to fans of werewolf novels and paranormal romance. Readers of Blood & Chocolate and Shiver might like this.



  1. I've read mixed reviews as well, and I'm not sure I'd read it--maybe if I saw it in the library. Thank you for the review! :)

  2. I loved Shiver so I might try to read this one. Awesome review!

  3. 5 cupids, yay! I am so glad you loved this as much as I did. We both can get excited as the release of Trial By Fire nears :D I can't wait to see Bryn and Chase's relationship explored more!

  4. This one is on my radar. Mixed reviews sometimes turn me off, but not in every case.

  5. Great review, this is one I've been on the fence about picking up.