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Wolf Winter is a historical fiction thriller – at least, I think that’s how they define the genre. I bought this book in November at the end of Basic Training. The BX had a limited selection of books and I wanted one to read on the 14 hour road trip to Air Force technical school. I committed the highest sin of reading and chose the book based on it’s cover. It was haunting, and the other options were horrendous.
I paid the $16 knowing I would need something to dive into once we loaded the bus. However, I didn’t know we would be leaving at midnight and that I would be so obsessed with having my phone back that the book would not be touched for another 7 months. I never even picked it up. Technical school was mentally draining and there was no time for pleasure reading. Even after graduating, the book was an afterthought.
When I finally did decide to give Wolf Winter my attention, it was late March and I was settling into life in Colorado and the operational Air Force. It’s actually one of the 20 books I want to read in 2016.
Now, you should know that I hate doing book reviews. I’m terrible at it. I either write too much or not enough. I suck at summarizing. So I’m not going to summarize this for you. You can get a plot synopsis anywhere. Why waste my time writing what’s already been said? I will, however, tell you my thoughts and opinions on this novel and whether you should read it.
Wolf Winter is a suspenseful read.
Cecilia Ekback is a good writer. This was her debut novel, and it shows. If you’re a book snob, you may not like it, but I give her kudos because she covered a country and time period that rarely sees attention. You can tell she put a lot of effort into this book, researching the era and its superstitions.
It’s 1717 in Swedish Lapland. A small family moves to a haunting mountain for the chance at a new life. Drama ensues.
There’s a bit of witchcraft, sorcery, and religion. The book surrounds these themes and it makes for some interesting twists and turns. Some reviewers say that the author’s language is too modern for the time period, but I didn’t mind. The story begins slow. It took me about three weeks to actually have interest in what was happening. I spent many nights trying to get excited about it.
Once I did get through the first 100 pages or so, I was hooked and I finished in just a few days. Nearly every character is flawed and I wanted to hate each one of them just a bit. At the same time, I connected with them. I believe that’s grounds for a good novel.
There are several moments that catch you by surprise and make you wonder why people would do such things. Some of those things are disturbing. Others – horrendous. Sometimes, I had to stop reading and go to bed for the night. I don’t recommend reading it at night if you have a vivid imagination, as it may cause odd dreams.
In conclusion, if you want to change up your regular reading routine, I recommend Wolf Winter by Cecilia Ekback. It’s not your everyday suspense novel, and it does expand your mind by thinking about how life used to be in countries we don’t often think about.
Have you read it? Let me know. I would love to discuss!