Monday, April 23, 2018

"The Saint of Wolves and Butchers"

Alex Grecian is the national bestselling author of the contemporary thriller The Saint of Wolves and Butchers, the novels of Scotland Yard’s Murder Squad, including The Yard, The Black Country, The Devil’s Workshop, The Harvest Man, and Lost and Gone Forever, as well as the critically acclaimed graphic novels Proof and Rasputin.

Grecian applied the Page 69 Test to The Saint of Wolves and Butchers and reported the following:
Page 69 of The Saint of Wolves and Butchers comes in the middle of a letter Ruth Elder has written to her adult daughter. Ruth started her life over after World War II, but she recently spotted a man she’s convinced is a former Nazi named Rudolph Bormann, and she’s concerned that her life may be in jeopardy.
I did not tell the men I worked for that I was a trained nurse. I could not bear anymore to see men who were wounded and dying. I feared I would see Dierk when I looked at an injured soldier. But I did well in my secretarial duties and was put into the guard training program at Ravensbrück, in the north of Germany. I did not know what that place was when I was assigned there, but I soon discovered what kind of camp it was.

The prisoners were almost all women, and so the guards were women, too. The administrators were men, of course, but interactions with prisoners were mostly left to us. There were female guards at other camps, but all of us went first to Ravensbrück. We were shown how to subjugate and terrify. We were given dogs and taught the commands that would make our dogs attack prisoners.

We were not taught any command to make the dogs stop attacking.
There are four main characters in this book, and none of them is featured here, but I still think this is pretty representative. Here we see how the past and present are intertwined, and how we’re powerless to escape history, an important theme throughout the novel.

Ruth’s letter is being read aloud to Travis Roan, a Nazi hunter who has travelled to Kansas to meet with Ruth, but has arrived too late. So he believes the letter is the only remaining key to help him find Bormann and bring him to justice. Ruth’s story motivates others, too, including Skottie Foster. She’s a state trooper, who is there to keep an eye on Travis, but she’s touched and disturbed by the letter. She agrees to help Travis, which ends up putting her family in harm’s way and ultimately pushes her to make some life-changing decisions.
Visit Alex Grecian's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Devil's Workshop.

--Marshal Zeringue