Sorry for not posting anything in a while, I’ve been crazy busy. Started a new job recently and that was eating up my time. Anyways, I wanted to give a shout-out to David Wellington’s newest novel, Overwinter. Now, you may remember that I mentioned this a while back in my review of Frostbite, and my interview with Mr. Wellington, so you can all guess I was pretty excited when it hit shelves.
Overwinter is the second in Wellington’s werewolf series, and surprisingly, it looks as if it may be the last. I don’t want to give too much away, but the novel has a satisfying conclusion, that does not have an obvious lead in to another novel in the series. Of course that doesn’t mean a third book is impossible, it just seems unlikely.
At any rate, Overwinter takes Wellington’s unique spin on the werewolf mythology that he laid the foundation for in Frostbite, but expands on it, throwing in many more references to Inuit mythology, some interesting new companions, and even more sinister enemies. Wellington’s storytelling is imaginative and his ideas are wonderfully different.
One of the coolest new characters is the villainous werewolf hunter, Varkanin, an obsessed Russian thirsting for revenge on all wolves. Varkanin is hired to tale care of Chey and Powell, who are still roaming the Canadian wilderness after the events of Frostbite. That is a pretty standard idea, but what makes Varkanin unique is that he’s blue. I don’t mean depressed. I mean his skin is physically blue. He injected himself with colloidal silver, making himself all but invulnerable to werewolf attacks. Now, I’m sure most people would wonder: what kind of madman would permanently turn himself blue just to kill a werewolf? Read the story to find out.
Dzo returns in this novel and he is definitely my favorite character in the series. Dzo is a kind of physical manifestation of the natural spirit of the muskrat, and he has lived for an incredibly long time. No specific date is mentioned, but Dzo talks of meeting the Neanderthals. In Overwinter, Dzo is joined by a few other spirit incarnations, and that’s when things really get interesting. The incorporation of Inuit mythology and animal spirits takes this werewolf story to a whole new level, and not only that, it spins an excellent origin tale for the werewolves.
The book is a perfect follow up to Frostbite, with enough action and gore to entertain and keep that “horror” edge, but also with a perfect amount of development and history for the reader to understand and empathize with every one of the main characters. Wellington is a favorite of mine, and he continues to earn high praise in my mind with every new novel. If Overwinter does turn out to be the last in the series, I will be sad to see it end, but I have not been disappointed.