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Praise for Little Wolves
"Here’s one I’ll recommend—Tom Maltman’s written an ambitious mythic thriller that hums with energy and portent. Set under brooding prairie skies, Little Wolves has modern psychoses and generational wickedness, ravening devils and uneasy saints. It shifts and dodges like wind, and it rings with conviction and confidence. What more can a reader ask?"
—Leif Enger, author of Peace Like a River
“Satisfying on so many levels . . . heartbreakingly real. This unpretentious tale of life in rural Minnesota is writing at its finest.”
—William Kent Krueger, New York Times bestseller and winner of the Edgar award
“Took my breath away . . . as rich in myth and metaphors as Cormac McCarthy's The Road.”
“Part allegory, part mystery and pure poetry, layered with Norse mythology and Anglo Saxon narratives, Maltman's second novel is dark, redemptive and very beautiful.”
"A dark and penetrating novel."
—Des Moines Register
“So good, you'll forget about icy sidewalks and a dead battery . . . Magical story, magical writing.”
—Saint Paul Pioneer Press
“At its heart, Little Wolves is a powerful mystery . . . Maltman combines mythology and small-town claustrophobia to show how the roots of the violence [are] planted.”
—Christian Science Monitor
"A complicated portrait of a prairie town, a meditation on violence, a fantasia of myth and folklore, and a knockout murder mystery, Little Wolves is haunting, at times terrifying, a gothic cousin to Kent Haruf's Plainsong. I loved this book."
—Benjamin Percy, author of Red Moon
"A work of nuance, craft, and tightly plotted narrative . . . Little Wolves is a portrait of two individuals seeking solace through religion and the law, and finding every opportunity thwarted by that most central tenet of Americana: nostalgia."
"A powerful mix of tragedy, myth, psychological thriller, and discovery told in a style so engaging that the reader might easily get caught up in the beauty of the words if the story itself were not so stunning."
—Library Journal Starred Review
"Layered with literary and mythic allusions . . . A satisfying and unforgettable read."
—School Library Journal
"A masterwork of fiction. Not just a good book that’s interesting on multiple levels, but a great book that will stand the test of time . . . I was completely spellbound. Add to this the mysteries surrounding the town and characters, and I felt, often, as though I were reading some contemporary version of Dostoyevsky."
—Peter Geye, author ofSafe From The Sea
"Little Wolves weaves the lives of a father, a son, a pastor’s wife, and a community in this compelling mystery of murder and secrets. His brilliant use of historical and mythical elements are combined with everyday life in ways that are hair-raising and true. Maltman has a gift for framing unforgettable characters. Everything about this book asks us to examine life more closely."
—Elizabeth Cox, Author of The Slow Moon
"This novel churns with the tension of a building prairie thunderstorm. Tom Maltman knows that dark truths can be hidden under open skies, and he knows the secrets of the bloodstained ax in the barn."
—John Reimringer, author ofVestments
"The poetry of this prose and the suspense of the plot, along with the intensity of characterization will have many readers comparing Thomas Maltman to Cormac McCarthy—that greatest of compliments—for very good reason. This novel is a work of high art by the real thing."
—Laura Kasischke, author of Space, in Chains and The Life Before Her Eyes
"Absolutely fantastic. Unnerving, gorgeously written . . . The writing is haunting.”
—Caroline Leavitt, author of Pictures of You
“Powerful . . . skillfully evoked”
“Maltman makes his leading characters so sensitive that you may shudder at the same revelations that so appall them.”
“Little Wolves is beautifully written, both in the style of prose and pacing of the narrative.”
—Grand Rapids Herald-Review
“Maltman expertly weaves a narrow thread of mysticism into the story . . . Thomas Maltman is a master wordsmith and storyteller. He seasons this story with the perfect amount of every ingredient. There is literally never a dull moment in this book.”
—Coastal Breeze News
"In gorgeous prose, Maltman conjures both the irrational suspicion and the heartwarming connections forged in a small town during times of trauma."
“Little Wolves is reminiscent of Kent Haruf’s Plainsong, but grittier . . . a great read with loads of literary merit."
“Thomas Maltman combines Norse mythology, fairy tales, and other elements of folklore to create a dark tale of hatred and deceit.”
—Ted Hertel, Deadly Pleasures
“Saturated with violence, Anglo-Saxon mythology and parochial pettiness, Maltman's novel is an unsettling work of first-rate fiction.”
“[Maltman] hit the ground running with Night Birds and has now given us another award-worthy novel . . . You will be drawn into the intriguing murder plot, of course, but you will also be captivated by Maltman's lyrical prose, adept storytelling, and artistic rendering of the moody Midwestern prairie of the 1980s. Maltman has done for the Midwest what Steinbeck did for the Salinas Valley.”
—Bev Denor, LaDeDa Book
“Maltman's prose is vivid and evocative, rendering place and event in striking images . . . This is a novel to be shared and savored, fiction at its finest, infused with tragedy and truth.”
—Curled Up with a Good Book (blog)
“Little Wolves was a wonderful listen, perfect for these cold moody winter days.”
—The Guilded Earlobe (blog)
“With Little Wolves, Maltman weaves a beautiful, bewildering cloth . . . We care enough to circle these stranded questions hours, days, even weeks after we have closed the book.”
Praise for The Night Birds
Alex Award Winner
"We all set our sights on the Great American Novel . . . [Thomas Maltman] comes impressively close to laying his hands on the grail."
—Madison Smartt Bell, Boston Globe
"Thomas Maltman's debut novel, The Night Birds, soars and sings like a feathered angel."
Verdict Maltman’s second novel (after the acclaimed The Night Birds) is a powerful mix of tragedy, myth, psychological thriller, and discovery told in a style so engaging that the reader might easily get caught up in the beauty of the words if the story itself were not so stunning. [See Prepub Alert, 7/22/12.]—Thomas Kilpatrick, formerly with Southern Illinois Univ. Lib., Carbondale(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Posted March 3, 2014
Finally an All Iowa Reads (AIR) book I enjoyed. Thank you for this year’s selection Iowa Center for the Book.
Every year the library I work for participates in the AIR program and I always dread having to read the book they select. It’s not that they are bad books, but just something I would never select or be interested in. In fact I have noticed that quite often they are books that not many of our patrons enjoy. I think the committee needs a little fresh blood in it to mix things up a bit. This year, however, I think they did a fine job of picking something that is going to appeal to most people. The book moved at a nice pace, has plenty of action, some mystery and a setting that most people in Iowa are going to identify with (even if it doesn’t take place in Iowa).
To me this book is about loss and death; how people come to terms with tragic situations, find closure and move on. It is also about small towns and the grudges, prejudices and traditions they so love to hold onto. How they can protect the monsters that live within their communities to the detriment of those that live there and how small town cliques can be worse than any high school in America. Small town have long memories and in the end, if they don’t want to die out, they need to learn to let things go and not hold the past against future generations.
This story was told from two perspectives, Grizz and Clara’s, both outcasts in the community in which they live. Grizz because of who his family is and Clara because she is a newcomer. They are both linked by a tragedy, an awful murder and suicide committed by Grizz’s son Seth. We spend the book learning the events leading up the the event and what caused him to do something so horrible. We also learn more of these two character’s past and what all connects them. I really enjoyed getting to know Grizz and Clara, but wish it could have been under better circumstances. They are both strong good people and it was nice to see them triumph over the events in the book to find some sort of peace in the end.
The people of the town upset me, even though I think they are pretty accurate representations of people who have lived in a small mid-west community for generations. It upsets me that there are still people like this in the world and that they get away with bullying people, that they feel free to intimidate and harass people who they deem less then in the community. Perhaps it isn’t such a bad thing that small town life is dying out. Maybe there will be fewer monsters in the world.
The ending was fitting and action packed. Even though this is a dark book in places there is peace and justice to be had in the end. It is a good book and I’m glad I read it.
Posted July 1, 2013
What a good book! Unexpected, mysterious, violent, sad. Maltman's language is evocative and lyrical; the story is deep and disturbing. I couldn't put it down!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 22, 2013
this is truly a strange book. I enjoyed it, but I don't know why. Couldn't recommend it to everyone, but if you can keep the story lines straight in your mind it is a good read.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 1, 2013
This book is amazing! I couldn't put it down! I really feel sorry for anyone who hasn't read it yet. It's a deep and insightful look at the dark night of the soul we go through when a community is touched by violence, and how the trauma can last for generations. HIGHLY recommended to psychology students, in my opinion...Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 5, 2013
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Posted July 22, 2013
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