- Hardcover: 384 pages
- Publisher: HQ; First edition (11 Jan. 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0008210136
- ISBN-13: 978-0008210137
Review by Kelly Lacey
Thank you to Harper Collins for our review copy of The Wolves of Winter. Amazon links are used in my feature.
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 fulfil a destiny she never imagined.
I’ve just stared at my screen for ages thinking about the best way to start my review, not because I’m stuck for words but because the book is so deliciously brilliant that I want to do it justice.
The book is set in the post-apocalyptic USA. After various countries at war and a flu epidemic that wiped out almost everything and everyone. You are left with a haphazard put together family living off the land in a cold snowy wilderness. It’s been compared to The Walking Dead and that sort of threw me because all the time I was reading I waiting on the undead walking through the forest. But they don’t mean that with the comparison, they mean it from the survival point of view.
The main protagonist is Lynn McBride. She is everything you would want from your leading lady, tough, kind, resourceful, determined and most of all relatable. She has no unrealistic superpowers or magical gifts. She’s a normal girl who’s learned along with her put together family to survive. The storyline would be quite sweet and gentle if it was just the everyday story of what they caught for dinner that night. But of course, Tyrell Johnson had something much more memorable in mind for our reader’s journey. The arrival of another human being, causes everyone to be on pins and needles with angst and fear. With an additional shock that he has a dog with him called Wolf. Having not seen another human or dog for such a long time. It really puts a spin on the works and sets off a whole chain of events which as the reader I was totally engrossed in. Tyrell Johson writes almost lyrically, each page filled with smells, tastes, sounds, and feelings. All my senses were on high alert and screaming for more. I loved the mentions of Walt Whitman throughout the book. That was a lovely touch.
This was my second read of 2018 and it was/is truly brilliant. I know it would appeal to a varied audience of genres. It would come under all these categories for me, thriller, dystopian, literary fiction, young adult, mature adult, adult and much more.
There was nothing I didn’t like about the book. The hunting scenes made me squirm a little. But they have to eat and Lynn and the other characters were respectful of it.
My absolute favourite paragraph from the book was~
Grief never goes away. It just changes. At first, it’s like molten hot lava dripping from your heart and hollowing you from the inside. Over time, it settles into your bones, your skin, so that you live with it, walk with it every day. Grief isn’t the footprints in the snow. It’s the empty space between.
Tyrell Johnson ~ The Wolves of Winter
The cover is stunning it portrays Lynn beautifully, I am delighted that I have a hardback cover for my shelves. This is one book I will most definitely reread.
I hope Tyrell Johnson has more of Lynn McBride’s story to tell. I can’t imagine our roads parting after just one book.
I thoroughly and wholeheartedly encourage you to order this book today.
I have one lovely copy to give away. You can enter via our Twitter page.
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