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Nadya Wolf Chronicles
     

Nadya Wolf Chronicles

by Pat Murphy
 
Growing up on the Missouri frontier in the 1830s, Nadya knew she was not like other girls. But when she became a woman at the Change came, she discovered just how different she was each month when the moon was full. Then a handsome young man taught her about passion and brought her unexpected tragedy, and Nadya set out on an arduous trek west, encountering danger,

Overview

Growing up on the Missouri frontier in the 1830s, Nadya knew she was not like other girls. But when she became a woman at the Change came, she discovered just how different she was each month when the moon was full. Then a handsome young man taught her about passion and brought her unexpected tragedy, and Nadya set out on an arduous trek west, encountering danger, love, and adventure as she sought a place where she could live wild and free.

Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Jennifer Fakolt
When Dmitri flees Poland after seeing his family massacred, he meets tarot reader Marietta in New Orleans and the two share an instant understanding. Together they build a home on the edge of the American frontier, where there is space enough to keep their secret: They are werewolves. Their only daughter, Nadya, grows up uncommonly liberal minded and strong, dangerous traits for the time. With puberty comes her first "Change" at full moon time: What is it like? An intensity, a pulling at the blood, an awakening of joy and pure sensory awareness. Nadya is raised knowing the truth about wolves and is distressed with the knowledge that man is the hunter and the wolf must always lose. When her first lover slays her parents, Nadya takes revenge and disappears. Changing her identity by cutting off her hair, she returns as a young man traveling west on the overland trail to California. Riding the horse of a man she killed, Nadya joins fates with Elizabeth Metcalf, daughter of an idealistic pioneer, left stranded on the trail. Sexual chemistry between the two is immediate. Elizabeth learns Nadya's lupine mystery, and the two engage in an "improper" love affair-impropriety being absurd on trail-which endures through trials of snakebite, Indian attack, dehydration, sickness, and mountain passes, until civilization proves its undoing. Nadya journeys up the northwest coast and finally meets the man who can love, accept, and understand her: half-Indian Jacob, whose clan shares the spirit of wolf. In this land of social castoffs, Nadya finds her haven. Nadya is an engrossing, intelligent novel. Murphy's style is lean, fine-tuned; her detail specific, yet removed. Nadya is an enigmatic character. Although we "know" her emotions and thoughts, Murphy keeps us aloof, distanced, which reinforces Nadya's otherness and informs her quest to be known and accepted, a quest with which readers can identify, as it is one we all engage in: the formation of identity, and determination of one's niche in the world of man. Nadya is frank and spare, yet offers a rich twist to both the historical novel-with its accurate depiction of the horrors and sublimity of trails west-and the fantasy novel. Werewolves are not great slavering monstrosities, but rather a unique race seeking space and co-existence. Give this thought-provoking novel to the exceptional, open-minded reader, who will be pleased by the blurring of genre and gender lines, and by the heroine's journey of self-discovery. VOYA Codes: 4Q 3P S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses, Will appeal with pushing, Senior High-defined as grades 10 to 12).
Kirkus Reviews
Rousing historical fantasy from the author of the Nebula- winning The Falling Woman (1986), etc. In the 1830s, Dmitri and Marietta Rybak and their daughter Nadya carve out a farmstead in the wilds of Missouri. Dmitri teaches Nadya to shoot and ride man- style, but the family's chief oddity is that they're werewolves. Adolescent Nadya finds herself strongly attracted to a hunky neighbor, Rufus Jones, but one night Rufus and the other settlers, stirred up by whiskey and a mad preacher, insist on going to hunt wolves—the very night when Nadya and her parents undergo their transformation. Crack shot Rufus kills both Nadya's parents, while Nadya barely escapes. In the morning, once again in human shape, Nadya takes her gun, shoots Rufus dead, hacks off her hair, dresses like a man, and heads west. She helps Elizabeth Metcalf, abandoned by her companions while her father lay dying of fever, and young orphan Jenny make the terrible crossing of prairie, desert, and mountains into California. But here Nadya and Elizabeth, now lovers, must part: Elizabeth can't leave civilization again, while Nadya can't bear to remain. Finally, weakly, Nadya wanders north into Oregon, where she meets a half-Indian member of the wolf fraternity who can accept her for what she is.

Overextended but intense and gripping, with lots of authentic background detail.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312862268
Publisher:
Doherty, Tom Associates, LLC
Publication date:
10/07/1996
Pages:
384
Product dimensions:
8.52(w) x 5.85(h) x 1.30(d)

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