werewolf-2320611_960_720If that picture came up on Tindr, I’d swipe left. Ironically, when that sort of picture comes up on my Kindle, I often click “download.” Case in point: I’m currently reading The Blackbirds: The Children of Corvus by L.E. Harrison. I received an ARC of the book from Netgalley.

Let’s talk about werewolves. What makes them so fascinating? Conversely, what aspects of werewolf tales repulse us? Good Things:

  • Werewolves represent the struggle many of us face between our animalistic urges and the the repressive forces we exert on ourselves to behave in socially acceptable ways.
  • They have super strength, speed, scenting abilities, hearing and stealth.
  • They live in highly organized packs. Order is appealing. So is the idea of a group always having one’s back.
  • They live close to nature. Many of us who live in big cities, surrounded by machines and asphalt, electric lights, and pressure to always be on the go, long for a pace of life that is slower and in tune with the seasons, where we can savor the beauty around us.
  • Loyalty to one’s mate and to one’s pack is commonly portrayed in these stories.
  • Lots of these stories involve big strong men and lithe, beautiful woman wandering around in the nude because they just went through the change. Sexy beasts!

Troubling Aspects:

  • Because of the close connection to nature, many authors describe them as Native Americans. I’m uncomfortable with this. Depending on the ethnicity of the author, this can be construed as cultural appropriation.
  • The alpha-omega aspect of pack hierarchy is distasteful to me at times, particularly in the way females are expected to submit.
  • Male-female role assignment often adheres to old-fashioned, repressive notions. Men hunt and protect the pack; females cook, breed and care for their whelps.

The Blackbirds is a little different than many of the other urban fantasy werewolf tales I’ve read. I’ll have lots of things to say about how it measures up to and defies expectations.What do look forward to when reading a book about werewolves? Do you have any qualms about them?

2 thoughts on “A-roooooooo!

  1. Great points! I couldn’t think of any qualms about Werewolves until I read yours and I totally agree with all of them!

    There is also the whole werewolves vs shifters thing. Are they sentient beings when they are in there werewolf state? Can they change at will? I don’t read horror so most of the stories I read are probably actually shifters and not werewolves but I love shifters! Especially when you get ones that can turn into animals other than wolves (even though I love wolves!)

    Now that I am thinking more I can only really think of Harry Potter with real werewolves and there is the issue of losing control and being worried about hurting the people you care about. While it can be super interesting to read about it would suck in real life!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh, good points. I don’t read horror much either, and hadn’t really made a distinction in my mind between werewolves and shifters. It really would suck to turn into a scary beast and hurt someone you cared about. Major downer, lol.

      Liked by 1 person

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