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The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney

The Tenderness of Wolves (2006)

by Stef Penney

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Showing 1-5 of 105 (next | show all)
An excellent mystery set in Ontario during the times when the Hudson's Bay Company was the end all and be all of the country. I loved the diversity of the characters, the hunt for the killer, and the references to places I know. The combination made for good reading.
( )
  ChristineEllei | Jul 14, 2015 |
It's simply an old-fashioned, exciting tale. By 'old-fashioned', I mean it's a story with a beginning, a middle, and an end; solidly drawn characters; exciting action that moves crisply along and a setting that is a character is its own right.

Set in the Canadian winter wilderness of the mid 1860's, the harshness of the natural surroundings is a major element in the story.

Blends elements of a murder mystery, romance and historical fiction in one pleasing package. ( )
1 vote borbet | Oct 21, 2014 |
Th8is is a 2006 novel written by a woman in Scotland who had never been to Canada. It is laid in 1867 in the country around Hudson Bay. There is lots of treking through snow and cold, as a number of people try to determine who killed and scalped a French trader. Mrs. Ross seeks to show it was not her son, though the son does not do things to avoid suspicion. I found the splotchy way of telling the story less than enlightening and would have liked a clearer denouement. And wolves played little role in the story. ( )
2 vote Schmerguls | Oct 4, 2014 |
I haven't had such a love/hate relationship with a novel in years.

the setting, the characters, the world-building, the visuals, and the story.

the style/structure.

It's aggravatingly apparent that Penney is a screenwriter first and a beginner novelist. Parts of the book are grossly underwritten and sweeping visuals stand in for logical segues. But at the same time, the setting is a character in its own right and gets to play (wonderfully) with metaphor.

Can I give it 3.5 stars? Parts are really wonderful, especially the longest, most fully written scenes.

Also, yay for more historical queer romance. :) ( )
1 vote sageness | Feb 7, 2014 |
The 1976 Costa Book of the Year, The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney is a complex story of life and murder in a small Canadian wilderness community during the winter of 1867. Lucy Ross discovers the body of her fur trapper/trader neighbour, scalped and with his throat slashed, and as the hue and cry rises, it is also found that her seventeen year old son has gone missing. The son, Francis, becomes the main suspect and the trail leads to another small community founded by a Norwegian religious sect and on to a Hudson’s Bay Post.

The story it told mostly by Lucy Ross, but shifts to other characters’ point of view in alternating chapters. This, for me, kept me both from becoming attached to any character and also for the story to become rather drawn out and muddied. The characters in this story come across as real and well fleshed out, but there were so many side stories that the book eventually became a rather frustrating read. Stories about two young girls who went out berry picking and disappeared into the wilderness, a Norwegian couple who indulge in an adulterous affair, and mysterious carvings that could possibly be proof of a Indian written language. These were all intriguing and would almost warrant their own book but in this book they eventually became distractions that pulled the readers’ attention away from the main plot.

There is no doubt that Stef Penney is an extremely talented author, but for me, I would have preferred a shorter, tighter story that kept the main story more as the main focus of the book. ( )
1 vote DeltaQueen50 | Jun 7, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 105 (next | show all)
I read The Tenderness of Wolves and fell into the story right away; the characters were well drawn and Penney is able to lead the reader from one page to the next.
added by mikeg2 | editThe Times, Alyson Rudd (Jun 23, 2007)
There are few things like an endless vista to make a novel seem really gratifyingly contained. The novel itself comes to seem like a fragile bubble of consciousness beyond whose limits is a threatening void. (And that's what novels, in one essential manner, are.) And living in the rudimentary civilisation of mid 19th-century Canada must have been like living in a novel: there is nothing to concentrate on except the flawed characters of your fellow human beings, and the spoor left by their movements. And that, in a way, is all The Tenderness of Wolves is about.
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The last time I saw Laurent Jammet, he was in Scott's store with a dead wolf over his shoulder.
Laurenta Jammeta sem nazadnje videla v Scottovi trgovini z mrtvim volkom čez ramo.
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Book description
1867, Canada

As winter tightens its grip on the isolated settlement of Dove River, a woman steels herself for the journey of a lifetime. A man has been brutally murdered and her seventeen-year-old son has disappeared. The violence has re-opened old wounds and inflamed deep-running tensions in the frontier township - some want to solve the crime; others seek only to exploit it.

To clear her son's name, she has no choice but to follow the tracks leaving the dead man's cabin and head north into the forest and the desolate landscape that lies beyond it....
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1867. Winter has just tightened its grip on Dove River, an isolated settlement in Canada's Northern Territory, when a man is brutally murdered. A local woman, Mrs. Ross, stumbles upon the crime scene and sees tracks leading from the dead man's cabin north toward the forest and the tundra beyond. But soon she makes another discovery: her son has disappeared and is now considered a prime suspect. A variety of outsiders are drawn to the crime and to the township--but do they want to solve the crime or exploit it? One by one, searchers set out to follow the tracks across a desolate landscape, variously seeking a murderer, a son, two sisters missing for seventeen years, and a forgotten Native American culture before the snows settle and cover the tracks of the past for good.--From publisher description.… (more)

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