S. A. Swann continues to reinvent the werewolf myth in this fantastic new novel set in the medieval world of the celebrated Wolfbreed. Like its predecessor, Wolf’s Cross is unafraid to cross boundaries and break taboos to tell an unforgettable story of romance and adventure that will forever change how you think about werewolves. Maria lives a simple life in a small Polish village, working for the lord of the nearby fortress. Motherless since birth, Maria has been raised by her father and stepmother. Around her neck she wears—as she has always worn—a silver crucifix, to protect her from the devil. Or so her father tells her. But when a contingent of badly mauled Teutonic knights, including a handsome and gravely wounded young man named Josef, ask for succor at the fortress, Maria’s quiet and comfortable world shatters. For the knights are Wolfjägers, an order dedicated to the extermination of werewolves, and Maria, unknowingly, is one of the creatures they hunt. Only the crucifix about her neck prevents her body from changing into a lethal killing machine. When Maria meets Darien, a wolfbreed bent on exacting a terrible revenge on humans, she will learn the truth about herself, and find her loyalties—and her heart—torn in two. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Enjoyable but Predictable
By A. Horton "A. H." - August 2, 2010
Wolf's Cross is an enjoyably well written historical fantasy with a healthy dose of supernatural and grit. Swann has done her homework on the era, and the descriptions throughout reflect a nicely submersive world. The book is well worth the read, filled with interesting characters who undergo believably intense emotional struggles and well written action scenes, and - a forgotten art! - a horrific villain that you can sympathize with as much as you condemn him.
That said, the novel didn't really hold any surprises for the reader. Readers of the sister novel, Wolfbreed, will find the moral dilemmas familiar, and at times most of the characters seemed to blend between novels (the ignorant she-wolf, the injured wolf-hating love interest, the rabid knight-captain, the sappily understanding family). The biggest plot twist is regrettably laid out in the product description - Maria is a werewolf. This was a remarkably poor choice, as a small bit of editing and a focus on... read more
A New Twist on the Werewolf Legend
By Jeannie Mancini "vernefan" - December 20, 2010
Darien is half human, half wolf. He is a mix breed werewolf capable of morphing into either being at will. As a child he witnessed his whole family, his clan of Wolfbreeds burned to death when a band of Polish Teutonic Knights called the Wolfjagers specifically armed for hunting his kind, herded and locked his people into a church and lit a match to mass murder them all. From that day on he vowed to ignore his human half and to slaughter as many people as he could. His wolf persona is angry, cruel, and vicious; he becomes a relentless killing machine.
Josef is a novice monk in training, new to arrive to the Wolfjager Order. Putting the horrors of his past behind him, memories of the Plague that took his family and wife away from him, he chooses a life of solitude to extinguish his pain. Josef is unaware of what the Order hunts, until one day their band is attacked in the forest by a fierce predator who slashes and kills many of their men. Josef himself is critically wounded... read more
(3.5 stars) Visceral werewolf story
By Kelly (Fantasy Literature) - August 4, 2010
The Teutonic Order, under the sadistic Brother Semyon, once trained wolfbreed (werewolves) as holy war machines. But when the Order lost control of the wolfbreed, they changed focus. Now, a century after the events of Wolfbreed, the Order believes the werewolves are Satanic and are dedicated to exterminating them.
In Wolf's Cross, a group of Order knights chases a werewolf onto Polish land. After a disastrous battle, the bloodied and tattered knights seek shelter at the castle of Polish leader Wojewoda Boleslaw. Two intertwined plot lines emerge. One focuses on the conflict between the Order and the Polish nobility. The other revolves around Maria, a young woman employed at the castle. She learns a devastating secret about herself and is torn between two men: an injured Order knight, and a charismatic stranger she meets in the woods. Along the way, she develops from subservient peasant girl to strong... read more
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