Werewolves among us

      For centuries, humans have been fascinated  by wolves, partly attraction, partly fear.  Stories abound of human children raised by wolves, humans who morph into wolves at the full moon, and more. Harry Potter and Twilight fans know well that current fantasy writers frequently include werewolves in their works, both as evil beings or complex human characters.
     Even Pulitzer Prize winners write about werevolves--Michael Chabon published a work in 2000 called Werewolves in their youth.  Although it seems the title story refers more to a young boy caught up in fantasy role-playing.
    Patricia Briggs' two series, Mercy Thompson and Alpha & Omega, both focus on werewolf societies in an alternate USA where humans, vampires, faerie and werewolves try to coexist. These action-packed mysteries with likable, complex characters cross many genres and appeal to both men and women, young and old.
    Modern Library's readers voted for the top 100 novels of the 20th century--and they voted eight Charles de Lint books onto the list, many of which feature werewolves and other mythological creatures in his urban fantasies. Wolf moon and Dingo are two of his works that focus on the shape-changing human to canine possibilities. For well-written books rich in classics, music and complex characters, de Lint is prime.
    Ravenous by Ray Garton is first in a new series in which the werewolf is evil, with no redeeming qualities at all. In Garton's depiction, the werewolf spreads lycanthropy through rape and kills to eat.  Werewolf hunter Daniel Fargo comes to the California town of Big Rock, confident their serial killer is actually a werewolf--and Sheriff Farrell Hurley isn't doubtful for very long. Graphic detail is included in both the rape and murder scenarios, so this is one for adults only.