Summary: Sam is an eighteen year-old rock star who likes to be alone. Unfortunately this puts her in serious danger one night when she leaves a concert and bikes home alone through Central Park in New York City. Attacked by two werewolves, Sam is bitten and infected, becoming a werewolf herself. Suddenly her world is turned upside-down as her werewolf status changes her eating habits, body temperature and attitude. Learning to juggle regular life as a rock star with her werewolf needs, Sam also has to find a way to stop the werewolves that infected her from attacking anyone else. In the end, Sam learns to accept herself as a wolf girl, recognizing and embracing the new benefits of being a werewolf.
Number of Pages: 295
Age Range: 14-16
Review: A fast-paced read about a rock star becoming a werewolf, Not Your Ordinary Wolf Girl by Emily Pohl-Weary is a smooth read that flows well. My favourite character is Mali, because she is very supportive of Sam even when she isn’t quite sure what is going on with her.
As for Sam, I thought she adjusted remarkably well to being bitten. I also liked that she takes it upon herself to seek out and protect the other girls who have been infected but didn’t become full werewolves. Owen is kind of a serial killer, and Sam does her best to track him down and subdue him to protect other would-be victims. The complexity of the werewolf world; those who think it should be cured and those who see it as a natural part of evolution and therefore something to be embraced was intriguing.
But I’m left with questions. And if you’re going to read this book, don’t read the next paragraph of my review because it contains spoilers.
If Sam is such a well-known rock star, wouldn’t she have bodyguards to protect her from fans? Why was it horrible when Sam thought Owen had infected her, but is fine when it turns out to be Marlon? Does that mean as long as the guy is attractive, it doesn’t matter that he endangered your life making you a werewolf because it was a passion thing, not a creepy thing? What happened to Courtney the bass guitar? How could Sam return to the store she stole the guitar from without incriminating herself? Is Joan the same guitar renamed? Is this the start of a series?
Putting my questions aside, I did like the details of Pohl-Weary’s book, from Sam naming her guitars after rock goddesses to Mali, the character who is gay and accepted as she is by her friends so quickly it is barely even a sub-plot.
This feels like an introductory werewolf story to me; and the action and romance contained in it make for an entertaining, early to mid teen read sure to be enjoyed by any fan of werewolf fiction.
“‘Well, just know that I’m here for you, Sam. I won’t judge. I know what it feels like to live with a shadow hanging over your head. You are who you are, and that’s natural and beautiful.'” – Mali from Not Your Ordinary Wolf Girl by Emily Pohl-Weary, page 242