Tuesday, June 3, 2008

"Promise of the Wolves"

Dorothy Hearst is the author of Promise of the Wolves, a BookSense Pick for June 2008.

She applied the Page 69 Test to the book and reported the following:
Promise of the Wolves is the first book in The Wolf Chronicles trilogy, which tells the story of how the wolf evolved into the dog--from the point of view of the wolf. The book is narrated by Kaala, a young wolf who grows up in the Wide Valley, where contact with humans is strictly forbidden. Kaala breaks this rule when she saves the life of a human child and discovers a long-hidden bond between the two species. Before long she and her young packmates are hunting and playing with humans--and changing the course of history.

I tried to weave together several threads in writing Promise of the Wolves: the story of the coevolution of humans and wolves, Kaala's discovery of her destiny, and the experience of life in a wolf pack through the eyes of a wolf. Page 69 captures this last element, as Kaala and her fellow pups watch the adult wolves prepare to steal a kill from a bear. You get a little bit of pack dynamics and a little bit of wolf behavior, and you also get to meet the ravens, who provide the smart-ass comic relief in the book.

Page 69 lets us in on an important day for the pups. It's the first time they've been allowed to leave the safety of their sheltered home to follow the adults on a hunt. It's also the last morning of Kaala's innocence--the last hours she thinks of herself as just another pup in the Swift River pack. Shortly after this scene, she sees her first humans. Her reaction to them shows her to be different from the other wolves in her pack, and will eventually set in motion the events of the rest of the book.
Read an excerpt from Promise of the Wolves, and learn more about the book and author at Dorothy Hearst's website and her blog.

Visit the complete list of books in the Page 69 Test Series.

--Marshal Zeringue