Monday, November 26, 2012

The Lambsridge Wolves is the new mystery / thriller with a supernatural twist. My 5 Star Review


The Lambsridge Wolves is the new mystery / thriller with a supernatural twist.  Author Chrissie Parkes took inspiration from encounters with real wolves to weave a story where the reality of Hazel’s secondary school life is threatened by the strange traditions of her tiny, rural village deep in the Welsh valleys...

 The Lambsridge Wolves:  Prologue:  Let Me In

The girl stares at the church door, unsure how she has ended up in this place.  Above, the clear night sky is black as fear, while pale mist curls between the trees, low and sinister.  It snakes around her ankles, as if to pull her back into the darkness from which they are coming.  Shivering, she dare not look behind in case a terrifying sight snatches the ability to move from her pale limbs.  She must get through the door before they catch up but it is locked, a heavy wooden barrier refusing to open. 
The rule drifts across her memory; don’t open the door, never open the door.  Now she understands why – that and the reason for the deep scratches around the edges of the timbers.  Fresh ones will join them soon and they will be hers, despite the futility.  But still a fire roars inside her, desperate and urgent; let me in!  She knows her attempts will fail and soon the pursuers will arrive.  The horror of the scene that will follow threatens to suck the remaining life from her bones.
Then she hears them, sounds filtering from between the dense trees with their sharp, snagging branches.  Tiny trickles of blood itch her arms and legs, bare in the fragile moonlight, and she realises the scent of blood is probably attracting them.  The inhuman noises grow louder and more urgent before a single, hideous howl echoes through the trees. 
They have found her.  She stares numbly at her hands, shocked to see blood under her fingernails, proof of her attempts to breach the door, somehow lost in the confusion of panic. 
Clouds gather overhead to hide the awful truth of what is to come.  Turning slowly, the girl’s mind empties as she prepares for their arrival.

Excerpt
“The girl stares at the church door, unsure how she has ended up in this place.  Above, the clear night sky is black as fear, while pale mist curls between the trees, low and sinister.  It snakes around her ankles, as if to pull her back into the darkness from which they are coming.
Clouds gather overhead to hide the awful truth of what is to come.  Turning slowly, the girl’s mind empties as she prepares for their arrival.”

 Hazel’s family history is firmly rooted in the tiny, rural village of Lambsridge, deep in the Welsh valleys.  She dreams of a life of excitement and fun in the outside world, but when the old traditions begin to threaten the lives of her family she can no longer deny the dark and menacing danger waiting for her in the woods at the top of the hill.
It’s called ‘The Reservation’ – a place where wolves roam wild behind a secure wire fence.  Shunned by the town kids and bullied at school, Hazel desperately tries to uncover the secrets lurking within and save her family.  But will she get to the truth before it destroys them all?


Author info
Chrissie Parkes writes real stories for young adults.   Inspirations come from nature, families and, of course, wolves.  Living in the south of England, Chrissie spends as much time writing as possible, given the demands of teaching a class of Year 3 children and walking two not-very-wolf-like West Highland Terriers.
Even though you think you can spot them, wolves are masters of disguise.   They use stealth and camouflage to pass undetected through our world.  Although they choose to avoid humans at all costs, beware. Sometimes they take an interest in one or two special humans.
Then, before you know it, it's too late to stop them...

Writing the book – inspired by real wolves! When I was writing The Lambsridge wolves, I took inspiration from the magnificent wolves at the UK Wolf Conservation Trust.Based outside of Reading, Berkshire, the organisation looks after several packs of wolves.  I was lucky enough to 'walk with the wolves' and meet some of these amazing animals.  If in some way, my book can help raise awareness or interest people to find out more about the true nature of these amazing animals, I would feel so ecstatic!  Why not visit the UKWCT website at http://ukwct.org.uk/.  I’m sure there are others around the world and on the web.  If you find one, let me know. At UKWCT you can watch videos, read and learn about the reality of wolf survival. Be truly inspired.  I was!

Links to purchase the book are available through my website 

Contact info for me is through my website, 
on facebook, Twitter (Chrissie Parkes@220parker).  

My 5 Star Review

Although not the typical genre I would read I really enjoyed this teenage supernatural story. The suspense filled mystery build up from page one until the end with the possibility of a follow up.

I met Chrissie Parkes through Bookblogs when she requested reviewers for this book. The blurb on Smashwords intrigued me and I mailed her.

We met a twelve year old that for the duration of the book seemed more like a twenty something young woman. Her circumstances forced her to be mature, thinking like a grown up to protect her family. Her clear objectives and thoughtful observations struck you from the get go and a few times I had to make sure that it was infact a twelve year old girl's view.
The grown ups, especially the mother with her tantrum filled personality really annoyed me. It seems her way of conversation was to scream, frankly that just do not "gel" with me. She knew the answers to all the frightful things going on in the village but instead of being subtle and protecting her children added to the fear and worries of Jed, Hazel and Molly.
The absent father quivered away not taking up the responsibility of fatherhood and is easily manipulated and threatened. While he knew what his children were facing.
Trapped in a world of secrets young Hazel is faced with normal teenage growing pains, fitting into a world she does not belong. Joining the Running Club to protect a friend she makes more enemies then friends. Her young friends trying to protect her while she tries to understand what is going on in her family life and why her family is falling apart. 
While the wolves is kept in the back ground, caged in a reservation and kept at a distance with no idea why they are so important to her or the "Lambers" the village she lives in, set apart from the rest of the world. The unusual church life the center of this village that borders on cults, over protective of their secrets and way of life allowing no outsiders in.
Since no grown up is willing to be honest she has to find her own answers that lead her into trouble each time. Her contact with the wolves the high light of the story, drawing you in and keep your intention to the very last page. 
A very good clean read for teenagers that loves mystery and the supernatural world of wolves. This is not the typical shapeshifters stories but the plot will keep you wondering till the very end. The author does not give anything away and then still you are left with questions.
Well done Chrissie Parkes.



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