My rating: 5 of 5 wolf howls
Received: Own (Kindle + Hard Copy)
Publication Date: June 20, 2016 by
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Point of View: First Person (OX)
Genres & Themes: MM Romance, Shifters, Paranormal, Werewolves, Romance, Fantasy
Ox was twelve when his daddy taught him a very valuable lesson. He said that Ox wasn’t worth anything and people would never understand him. Then he left.
Ox was sixteen when he met the boy on the road, the boy who talked and talked and talked. Ox found out later the boy hadn’t spoken in almost two years before that day, and that the boy belonged to a family who had moved into the house at the end of the lane.
Ox was seventeen when he found out the boy’s secret, and it painted the world around him in colors of red and orange and violet, of Alpha and Beta and Omega.
Ox was twenty-three when murder came to town and tore a hole in his head and heart. The boy chased after the monster with revenge in his bloodred eyes, leaving Ox behind to pick up the pieces.
It’s been three years since that fateful day—and the boy is back. Except now he’s a man, and Ox can no longer ignore the song that howls between them.
I have love this book, and I have hated it, and I hope I could give it the justice it deserves.
TJ Klune is a storyteller. I knew this when the first couple of sentences rendered me with a lump that would not budge. I knew this when the first chapter moved me. I knew this when my 30 minute lunch break at work was over. I knew this when all I wanted was to be back in that break room and reading about a kid named Ox who deserved the world. I knew this when it was all about candy canes and pinecones and epic and awesome.
I love words, and I specially love resounding sentences. The ones that stay with you, the ones that impact you with it’s simplicity and honesty. And I love TJ Klune’s words, every single time. I love his characters, I love his worlds, I love his plots, I love his stories. Because within the hilarity of the characters, within the heartbreak, within the eccentricity his words, there’s a ringing truth to the characters. A staggering flaw to the story and it’s characters. They make mistakes and they break and they hurt, but they fight till the end.
Wolfsong is brilliant in all it’s heartbreaking glory. It builds you up the way Ox builds his own family out of the Bennet pack. It’s lyrical and a storm of beautiful characters and then it leaves you breathless out of despair, until finally you get the world at your feet with Joe and Ox.
At 12, Ox’s father leaves. His last words are so powerful that it shapes Ox’s story, “You’re gonna get shit. For most of your life.” Sometimes the ones closest to us are the ones that hurt us the most, the ones who make you feel that you aren’t worth that much, and if it’s your parent saying it, then well, they know best, right.
On his 16th birthday everything changes with a little tornado and the house at the end of the lane no longer empty. The little tornado, Joe, claims Ox as his own. And from then on, nothing could ever be the same.
It was almost his twenty-third birthday, when things changed again. Except. Except. Except. This time he noticed how much time had passed since he met his little tornado of candy canes and pinecones and epic and awesome. Except, he noticed a certain pair of low-slung shorts. Except he finally realized what the stone wolf meant. How small Joe had been and yet he had given Ox his stone wolf.
“He touched my arm, my hand, my thigh.
He had a straw in his soda. He never used straws. Never. But he had one now, pulled from somewhere, eyelashes fluttering up at me as he sucked, cheeks hollowing. I dropped my fork. It clattered loudly onto my plate.
“Joe,” Thomas sighed. “Really?”
“Oops,” Joe said. Sorry.” He didn’t sound sorry at all.
Kelly said, “Oh man, this makes so much more sense now. And is much more gross.”
“I made pie for dessert,” Elizabeth said, coming back to the table. “whip cream topping.”
Ox realizing his feelings for Joe was glorious and hilarious and giddy and basically everything. Joe and Ox have always been adorable and amazing to watch. You just know how beautiful they could be/will be. For a while it’s just that; they are, they are, they are. And then, then, then. It happens.
Not a day more, not a day less. Those years, those months, those days made and broke things. It made Ox into something else, it made the pack into something else, it made them all into something else, something more, something less. It broke some part of Ox, some part of Ox and Joe. Some part of the pack that was, and could’ve been. And things changed again.
This book is about change. About pack and family. And how it’s all closely related and interlocked. It’s romantic, in every sense. The romance is just as magical as the bonds that Ox forms with wolves and packs and family and friends. Because there is magic all around this book; not only in the shifters, and the moon, and the wolves songs, and colors. It’s in the family, the pack, we find in friends, in others.
I’ve wanted to swallow its words and characters and have them become mine, become me. But I hope their magic lives inside of me.