Rock ‘n’ Read: The Wolf House by Mary Borsellino

Wolf House seriesOne of the reasons I started writing Kitty and Cadaver is that I love books involving rock and roll and monsters! If, like me, you think there should be more books like that, here are some suggestions to get started.

Readers of my Mortal Words blog will already know that I am a huge fan of Mary Borsellino’s work. Borsellino explores the darkest heart of humanity and discovers there light and life and hope and love, living alongside the monsters: making the monsters utterly human.

The first of her works I fell in love with was the five-book series The Wolf House. This vampire series, aimed at young adult readers, had all the red bloodedness and disturbing passion of gothic vampire fiction of yore, unlike the often tamed, romantic vampire fiction for teens of recent years.

There is blood and love and loss in these books; punk music and sacrifice; complex relationships and brutal solutions. It’s heart-wrenching. It’s fury-making. It’s glorious.

Borsellino, who has been a music journalist as well as pop culture commentator, has written a brilliantly complicated series with a deeply satisfying finale, stuffed full of terrific characterisation as well as queerness, rock sensibilities, sex, tattoos, swearing, you name it. There’s nothing tame about The Wolf House.

Playing with the music analogy, Borsellino once said: “I read Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight, and, while I liked it, I thought ‘okay, so that’s like Sandy and Danny [from the film Grease], the cute little sodapop love story. Now I want to read the one about Betty Rizzo’.”

She’s also said: “much recent horror fiction goes for the easy scare or the cheap gore, rather than considering the full range of what can be done when the mirror we hold up to life has a monster in the reflection.”

The Wolf House is one of my favourite book series and anyone who loves monsters and music will surely love the sharp, shocking, beautiful world Mary Borsellino creates here.

Have you read this book? What did you think? Do you have any other recommendations for books about music, magic and monsters? Leave a comment below!

New to Kitty and Cadaver? Find out about the project in About Kitty and Cadaver or start from chapter one at Read the Book.

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