Reading level: Young Adult
Size: 448 pages
Release Date: May 10, 2011
Stand Alone or Series: 1st in Series
Source: Audiobook from Audible.com
Rating: 3/5 stars
I really loved Every Other Day by Jennifer Lynn Barnes so I decided to go pick up an earlier book from her, I’ve heard mixed things about Raised by Wolves but decided to give it a read. In general I ended up having mixed feelings about the book. I loved the ending, I thought the rest of the book was kind of ho-hum and boring. I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook was decent; nothing especially outstanding but it was well enough read.
Bryn has literally been raised by wolves; she was marked and raised by a werewolf pack after her parents were brutally murdered by a rabid werewolf. Bryn likes to keep her own space and push the bounds in a society that is incredibly rigid and strict. This all comes to a head when Bryn finds that Calem, the pack alpha who helped raise her, is keeping a secret from her. Bryn finds out the secret is Chase, a boy who survived a werewolf attack just like Bryn. Then Bryn finds out the secret goes even deeper than she could imagine.
There were a lot of things I didn’t like about the beginning of this book. Bryn was obnoxious, she did a lot of things just to get on Calem’s case. I guess typical teenage behavior but it was annoying to read about. Then there was all the times Bryn chants “obey, obey, obey” or “tests her will” against the pack bond. I just thought it was boring and was waiting for something to happen besides watching Bryn struggle between her own identity and the pack’s identity.
I also found Bryn’s love at first sight thing with Chase to be incredibly annoying; I do understand it was for a reason and was explained later in the book. Early on though there was a lot of eye rolling going on; I hate it when two characters have an unexplained heated attraction to each other instantaneously. That and I didn’t really like Chase all that much; he just wasn’t there for Bryn early on in the book.
There were some things I really did like. The idea of having a “normal” girl being raised by werewolves was unique and interesting. The last third of the book was also incredibly interesting. I am not going to talk about it much because I don’t want to spoil it. But especially when Bryn’s best girlfriend joins the story things get crazy and surprising. I ended up really liking how the story turned out and was impressed with how nicely everything came together at the end of the book.
Overall, because of the spectacular ending, I think this ended up being an okay book. There wasn’t much world building though and I didn’t really click with any of the characters. I didn’t like Bryn or Chase much and I thought their relationship was a bit, well, too love-at-first-sightish for me. The pacing was a bit off as well; the first half of the book moved slowly and all the good stuff happened way late in the story. I probably won’t be reading anymore books in this series. Fans of werewolf urban fantasy might find something here to like, but I would recommend this strictly for the teen crowd…it didn’t have much appeal to me as an older reader.