The most pawsitively awesome werewolf books

The Books I Picked & Why

By These Ten Bones

By Clare B. Dunkle

Book cover of By These Ten Bones

Why this book?

This book is at the top of my list because it’s one of my very favorites. Dunkle spins a gripping, atmospheric story with memorable characters, and you can tell she’s done her research on medieval Scotland. I love the old Celtic tales woven in, and the sweet romance between Maddie and the woodcarver. But what I like most of all is the theme of redemption. Maddie is a true hero, brave in the face of an unimaginably powerful, ancient evil. She showed me that you don’t have to be big or strong or rich or “somebody” to make a difference. You just have to be willing, have faith, and do your part.

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Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

By J.K. Rowling, Mary Grandpré

Book cover of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Why this book?

This third Harry Potter book features a werewolf, Remus Lupin, as one of Harry’s professors. (Sorry if that was a spoiler, but his name is practically Werewolf McWerewolf, as the joke goes.) I found Lupin to be highly sympathetic and easy to love—hands down the best teacher Harry ever had. Despite being shunned by most of the wizarding world, Lupin still persists in living as good a life as he can, helping others, and not giving in to despair. That’s a true hero. I also like how Rowling uses lycanthropy as a metaphor for illness, as I have a chronic autoimmune condition and I very much relate.

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Werewolf Cop

By Andrew Klavan

Book cover of Werewolf Cop

Why this book?

Werewolf Cop is a hard-boiled noir quite unlike the other books on my list, but Klavan’s powerful voice drew me in and never let go. The book wasn’t entirely hard and gritty like I assumed at first. I especially like the way Klavan portrays the relationship between the main character and his wife. My favorite quote from the book is: “Bloody hard to know who the good guys are, isn’t it?” “It is,” said Zach. “I’m not even sure that’s how it works... It’s more like—messed-up guys, some fighting for the good, some for the bad, and the rest just wandering around bumping into the furniture.”  

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The Wolfman

By Jonathan Maberry

Book cover of The Wolfman

Why this book?

I saw the 2010 movie first and then later found the book version in a thrift store and had to grab it. Both book and movie deftly create a gloomy, gothic, Romantic atmosphere; the book develops the characters and relationships further. It’s the age-old story of a man seeking to rid himself of a curse, pursued by the law and betrayed by someone who was supposed to protect him—I’m a sucker for that kind of tale! If you enjoy the classics like Dracula and Frankenstein, but find it harder to get through them or connect with them emotionally because of the older language and style, give this book a try.

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The Wolf Gift: The Wolf Gift Chronicles

By Anne Rice

Book cover of The Wolf Gift: The Wolf Gift Chronicles

Why this book?

While this book was a bit slower-paced than I typically prefer, Anne Rice’s elegant style kept me turning pages. Reuben’s transformation isn’t a painful curse but is, as the title suggests, more like a superpower, a gift to be used for good. As the “Man Wolf” he becomes a popular and controversial media figure, a vigilante who literally devours attempted rapists, muggers, and other criminals. Meanwhile, in his human life, Reuben wrestles with Catholic guilt over the people he has killed. I like that thoughtful, spiritual angle, as well as the rich descriptions—and I also love a certain group of characters who come in later, but that’s a spoiler!

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