Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Wolf's Hour by Robert R. McCammon

The Wolf's Hour, written in 1989 by Robert R. McCammon, is an awesome book! I was hooked on page one and I finished it in record time. It immediately went to the top of my keeper list. I can't believe it took me so long to discover it. This is not your typical werewolf tale. The novel is actually two stories in one book. It's a World War II adventure about Michael Gallatin, an intelligence agent in the midst of trying to stop the Nazi agenda. It's also the history of Mikhail Gallatinov and how he becomes a werewolf. The two men are one and the same and McCammon weaves Michael's past and present together seamlessly.

In 1944 Allied Intelligence gets wind of something coming which might ruin the allied invasion of Europe. They need more information and Adam, the agent who has it, is in Paris being watched by the Gestapo. Master spy, Michael Gallatin, is called out of seclusion to retrieve the Intel. He parachutes into occupied France and contacts Adam to arrange a meeting. Adam is killed but Michael escapes. He pretends to swallow a cyanide capsule, but instead shifts into a werewolf and kills the Gestapo. The dangerous mission then leads him to Berlin, the center of the Third Reich, to put down a secret Nazi plan called the "Iron Fist." The story shifts to the past. It's 1918 and Mikail Gallintov sees his parents and sister brutally murdered by a Russian death squad. The same fate would have been his but the assailants were killed by wolves. In the chaos, Mikail is bitten. But these are no ordinary wolves. Mikail becomes a lycanthrope and lives with the werewolf clan in a Russian forest.

This extraordinary story kept me reading into the wee hours of morning. I especially enjoyed Michael's introduction to the world of lycanthropy. No one has ever done it in more detail and so beautifully real. The characters live and breathe. Michael is the ultimate alpha hero. There's action aplenty and some of it is graphic and pretty brutal - the worst of it is committed by the humans. McCammon's depiction of Europe and the war will please fans of history. Lovers of the supernatural will be intrigued by Michael's conversion to a werewolf. And those who enjoy spy and military stories will find this one will hold their interest. It would make a great movie. I highly recommend it.

Publisher: Pocket (August 15, 1990)

ISBN: 978-0671731427

Mass Market Paperback: 432 Pages

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