Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Wolf Border by Sarah Hall

Author: Sarah Hall
Publisher: Harper
Date of publication: June 2015

The award-winning author of The Electric Michelangelo returns with her first novel in nearly six years, a literary masterpiece about the reintroduction of wild wolves into the United Kingdom.

She hears them howling along the buffer zone, a long harmonic.
One leading, then many.
At night there is no need to imagine, no need to dream.
They reign outside the mind.

Rachel Caine is a zoologist working in Nez Perce, Idaho, as part of a wolf recovery project. She spends her days, and often nights, tracking the every move of a wild wolf pack—their size, their behavior, their howl patterns. It is a fairly solitary existence, but Rachel is content.

When she receives a call from the wealthy and mysterious Earl of Annerdale, who is interested in reintroducing the grey wolf to Northern England, Rachel agrees to a meeting. She is certain she wants no part of this project, but the Earl’s estate is close to the village where Rachel grew up, and where her aging mother now lives in a care facility. It has been far too long since Rachel has gone home, and so she returns to face the ghosts of her past.

The Wolf Border is a breathtaking story about the frontier of the human spirit, from one of the most celebrated young writers working today.

I really tried to like this book.  In fact, I'm sure that it is probably a nice story.  Unfortunately, I had a really hard time getting into The Wolf Border.  There were a couple of reasons.  I didn't like the like writing style.  The story is written in the present tense.  While I don't normally have an issue with that, the lack of quotation marks that usually mark a spoken sentence made it hard to follow.  I never knew if someone was speaking and that got annoying after a while.  It was like a flowing journal writing that just meandered along.  I also didn't care for the main character.  She was kind of depressing and seemed to be unhappy all of the time, sleeping around and getting drunk.  It just didn't spark my interest.

The book had received good reviews elsewhere.  It just wasn't for me.

About Sarah Hall

Sarah Hall was born in 1974 in Cumbria, England. She received a master of letters in creative writing from Scotland’s St. Andrews University and has published four novels. Haweswater won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize (overall winner, Best First Novel) and a Society of Authors Betty Trask Award. The Electric Michelangelo was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize (Eurasia Region), and the Prix Femina √Čtranger, and was longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction. Daughters of the North won the 2006/07 John Llewellyn Rhys Prize and the James Tiptree Jr. Award, and was shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award for science fiction.How to Paint a Dead Man was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and won the Portico Prize for Fiction. In 2013 Hall was named one of Granta‘s Best Young British Novelists, a prize awarded every ten years, and she won the BBC National Short Story Award and the E. M. Forster Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Find out more about Sarah at her website, and connect with her on Facebook.

Purchase Links

Sarah’s Tour Stops

Tuesday, June 9th: From the TBR Pile
Wednesday, June 10th: BookNAround
Friday, June 12th: Book Dilettante
Monday, June 15th: Reading to Distraction
Tuesday, June 16th: WildmooBooks
Wednesday, June 17th: Conceptual Reception
Thursday, June 18th: Raven Haired Girl
Monday, June 22nd: Bookshelf Fantasies
Tuesday, June 23rd: A Bookish Way of Life
Wednesday, June 24th: Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews
Thursday, June 25th: Apples and Arteries
Friday, June 26th: Book Reviews by Lanise Brown
Monday, June 29th: Queen of All She Reads
Tuesday, June 30th: Lavish Bookshelf
Wednesday, July 1st: Rockin’ Book Reviews
Wednesday, July 1st: Broken Teepee
Thursday, July 2nd: Kritters Ramblings

Friday, July 3rd: Buried in Print


Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this book for the tour.

Merryl said...

I'm currently reading this book. Certainly agree about the lack of quotation marks. I can't actuality see any reason for not using them - it adds nothing stylistically as far as I can see. I will read to the end but don't feel any great interest in the characters. I won't be recommending it to anyone.