Rating: 5/5 Bookworms
Short and Sweet Summary: The end of the world will push this family to the limits but when a stranger shows up at camp secrets come to light that will change the course of their lives forever.
I find it so amazing when a debut author knocks it out of the park; although realistically speaking I know that he’s probably been writing for ages but still! The Wolves of Winter was genuinely refreshing and unique, taking a genre that can be repetitive and unoriginal and giving it a fresh look. Dystopian novels always seem to have the same elements making them predictable yet The Wolves of Winter kept me on my toes from start to finish.
I was a complete and utter badass.
What I love about dystopian novels, and what I think draws people in, is that it pushes the characters to their limits by putting them in situations that they never would have encountered in the “real world”. I felt as though I was growing right along with Lynn, the main heroine, as the story developed. I was able to put myself in her shoes as she hunted and see the white, snowy landscape through her eyes. Tyrell Johnson was able to convey how vulnerable and how strong she was with just a couple of sentences. She has taken on the role of provider yet she’s still a teenager often thinking about leaving and seeing what’s left of the world but knowing that she has responsibilities at home.
Funny thing about snow. You pick it up in your gloved hand and it feels like a handful of flour, easily blown away in the wind, but pile it on, let it sit for a while, and it’ll bend the strongest wood.
Johnson brilliantly captured Lynn and her family’s triumphs and shortcomings as they navigated their new world. From shelter to clothing to food they had to adjust to a new normal. The twists and turns throughout the book ensured that I was at the edge of my seat the entire time; even when I wasn’t reading I was thinking about the characters and what could possibly come next. It’s clear that Johnson understands pacing, as there wasn’t any point where I felt that the story line lagged or that I lost interest.
It started with a shuffling in the distance, a stirring in the otherwise silent morning, the sound of snow being mashed beneath heavy weight. The truck, the horses, the men. They may as well have been aliens landing on our small planet.
I loved the complex relationship between the characters. The relationships were strained and multifaceted and ever changing. Lynn was actually the only female, aside from her mother, on the site and with most of the available men being related to her she had slim pickings. The fact that she was even thinking about boys when it’s seemingly the end of the world made her more real to me. Doesn’t matter what is going on in the world I will always notice a cute boy, or the lack thereof. It was great to see how all the characters reacted to the end of the world; some thrived while others lost their minds.
Do you think that you could survive the end of the world? I’m sad to say that I don’t think I would!
Forget the old days. Forget summer. Forget warmth. Forget anything that doesn’t help you survive.
Lynn McBride has learned much since society collapsed in the face of nuclear war and the relentless spread of disease. As memories of her old life haunt her, she has been forced to forge ahead in the snow-covered Canadian Yukon, learning how to hunt and trap to survive.
But her fragile existence is about to be shattered. Shadows of the world before have found her tiny community—most prominently in the enigmatic figure of Jax, who sets in motion a chain of events that will force Lynn to fulfill a destiny she never imagined.
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Get to know Tyrell Johnson:
Tyrell Johnson is a writer and editor. He received his MFA in Creative Writing from the University of California Riverside where he studied fiction and poetry. He’s passionate about the outdoors and can often be found on the mountain with his Siberian Husky, or on his mother-in-law’s ranch feeding her horses and a donkey named Jim. Originally from Bellingham Washington, he now lives in Kelowna, BC, with his family. The Wolves of Winter is his debut novel.
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