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The Wolf Hunt

av Gillian Bradshaw

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1819111,152 (3.88)7
Betrayal, love, and lycanthropy in the time of the Crusades Based on one of the Lais of Marie de France, The Wolf Hunt is a breathtaking adventure that showcases, once again, Gillian Bradshaw's respectability as both a historian and as a novelist. When Marie Penthièvre of Chalendrey is abducted from her Norman priory and taken to Brittany's court, she vows never to dishonor her family's ties by marrying a Breton brute. There is only one man who might change her mind: Tiarnán of Talensac, a handsome, skilled, and noble knight indeed. But Tiarnán does not love her, and when he marries a slip of a girl instead, Marie vows to become a nun as soon as she is able. But Tiarnán has a secret, and that slip of a girl betrays him once she learns of it. When Tiarnán disappears and is presumed dead, his widow marries his one time rival and assumes title to his land, which steadily begins to decline under her unskilled, merciless rule. Marie knows something is wrong, and only she is clear headed enough to rescue Tiarnán and return him to his rightful status. But can she do so before it is too late? Rich in romance, and intrigue, steeped in history and wonder, The Wolf Hunt is historical fiction at its best, by one of its most skilled practitioners.… (mer)
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» Se även 7 omnämnanden

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Based on the Lai de Bisclaveret by Marie de France, this is an entertaining historical romance set in Brittany during the Crusades. Not slushy in the least, I can see it forming part of an Ars Magica campaign. On the strength of it, I've got a copy of the Lais. Recommended.
  Maddz | Oct 4, 2017 |
This was my second foray into the work of Gillian Bradshaw, whose earlier novel, Island of Ghosts , has become one of my favorite works of historical fiction. Based upon The Lai of Bisclavret, one of a series of poems composed by Marie de France in the twelfth century, The Wolf Hunt follows the story of young Marie Penthieve de Chalandrey, who finds herself an unwilling participant in the conflict between Duke Hoel of Brittany and Duke Robert of Normandy.

As she struggles to make a place for herself in a world of divided loyalties, Marie must strike a balance between her sense of familial duty and her own heart. Her love for the Breton knight, Tiarnan of Talensac, seems destined to remain unrequited when he marries another. But nothing is as it seems, and a creature of legend - the bisclavret - will have a decisive role in deciding her destiny.

Complete with kidnapping, escape, rescue, romance, and betrayal - this medieval swashbuckler provides an entertaining and enlightening read. Although more romantic than Island of Ghosts, it never descends into melodrama, and offers an intriguing glimpse of medieval Breton society. ( )
1 rösta AbigailAdams26 | Jun 18, 2013 |
A retelling of a French myth, this was actually more fun than Bradshaw's Arthuriana that I read as a kid. The pace was a little slow, but it got to the point eventually. ( )
  JeremyPreacher | Mar 30, 2013 |
The book is written beautifully. The prose is luminous, the historical details, sprinkled though the narrative, make the times of the Crusades stand alive, and the descriptions are vivid. And the characters populating the story are diverse and reflective of the Renaissance. BUT…
The structure of this novel consists of two stories: the frame story and the inside story. I love the frame and its protagonists. I dislike the inner story and its main character intensely, and this dislike reflects on the entire novel.
The frame introduces Marie, the heiress, an extremely principal heroine, as only fictional people can be in our unprincipled age. The story starts excitingly enough with her getting abducted from a convent and brought into the household of a duke against her will. Unfortunately, almost immediately, Marie is relegated to the sidelines. Endowed with grace and compassion, she is a prim medieval maiden. She sits decorously at the ducal court and waits for the inner story to move forward. Perhaps, somewhere in the pages of the ending, the author would find a place for her again.
Then there is Tiarnan, a brave and noble knight who saved Marie from bandits in the beginning of the story. Afterwards, the frame flows into the story proper, and following a weird twist of the author’s imagination, Tiarnan marries another girl, beautiful slut Eline. When his wife betrays him, he begins roaming the pages as a wolf. At this point, he is almost as useless to the story momentum as Marie.
To my consternation, the bulk of the inner story is written from the POV of Eline. A pretty and petty young woman, she is self-absorbed and narrow-minded. She destroyed (or at least attempted to) her husband Tiarnan, a man who loved her dearly, just because he was different. Without a moment of hesitation, she sacrificed his life and sanity for her own creature comforts. She is the villain of the story; her motivations are base and totally comprehensible, but she is so sly and shallow, it feels wrong to give her the lead role.
There are people I know in real life who are exactly like her. In the day-to-day existence, they’re nice, upstanding citizens. But when a disaster strikes or an adversity calls for understanding and acceptance, they retreat behind their self-righteousness and their rigid ‘morals’ and plow ahead like blind tanks, demolishing anyone who dares to stand in their way, anyone who dares to be different. Jews, blacks, gays, and many others divergent from the white, Christian ‘norm’ have suffered from such people throughout the centuries of human history. She is much worse then a standard literary villain because she lives among us, breathes the same air, and nobody can guess that she is evil.
In Bradshaw’s novel, she gets her comeuppance in the end, but the entire tale left a bad taste in my mouth. Reading about Eline felt like being smeared with filth. I wanted to know more about the real protagonists, the ones I could sympathize with, Marie and Tiarnan, but for most of the novel they were simply two passive figures, immobilized in the frame. Eline was the one who propelled the plot forward. And I can’t forgive the author for giving the little bitch so much space between the covers. She is a monster; she doesn’t deserve the spotlight.
The question that plagues me the most is why Tiarnan chose pretty, empty-headed Eline instead of virtuous Marie in the first place? He seemed a smart guy. Did Eline’s gloriously blond beauty blind him to her ugly morals and absent conscience? Why did he think with his dick instead of his head? Almost he had brought his plight on himself by acting like a moonstruck idiot.
When the frame was finally reestablished by the end of the novel, Marie again stepped forward, and Tiarnan was restored to his human knightly splendor. But I was left to wonder: was his suffering a punishment for his bad judgment? Was it a morality tale after all?
According to blurb, the novel is based on a medieval manuscript. Maybe that fact alone could explain the frame structure of the novel (popular in the old times) and its characters’ depiction in black and white. They are not two-dimensional, oh no, they have depth to them, but they are all universally either goody-good or really bad. There is no gray area in any of the characters, and for a writer of Bradshaw’s caliber, that seems an odd flaw.
Overall a very-well written novel which I mostly disliked and had trouble finishing. A strange experience, although to be fair, I have to say that it does not reflect the novel’s quality but rather my personal taste.

( )
  olga_godim | Oct 4, 2012 |
The wolf hunt is wonderful mixture of love, magic, intrigue, loyalty and betrayal.The novel is based on Marie de France, 12th century poem. It starts out when Marie Panthievre of Chanderly is deceived and abducted from the priory of St. Michael in Norman and taken to the court of Brittany, her family's and country's most dreaded rival. Caught between these two forces, she vows never to marry a Breton out of loyalty. Things begin to change when Marie falls in love with Tiernan of Talensec, her rescuer and surety but finds herself heartbroken and more determined to convert into a nun, when he marries the beautiful but spoiled Eline.If I thought the beacon at alexandria was a good read, I did not enjoy the wolf hunt any less. I especially like how we were shown to the characters feelings and motivations, as the POVs switched from one person to another. If there's one flaw that I could name, it would be pacing of the novel. I found some parts choppy and this essentially, disrupts the flow of the story. Ms Bradshaw has a talent for evoking emotions into her characters and knows how to move the story to keep readers interested but she does not do well when combining both aspects at the same time. When she's developing her characters, the action seems to be missing; and vice versa.Overall, the book was quite entertaining and I'd recommend it if you're a fan of Ms Bradshaw or if you're just looking for a good book to spend your time with. ( )
  abigailyow | Jan 29, 2012 |
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Betrayal, love, and lycanthropy in the time of the Crusades Based on one of the Lais of Marie de France, The Wolf Hunt is a breathtaking adventure that showcases, once again, Gillian Bradshaw's respectability as both a historian and as a novelist. When Marie Penthièvre of Chalendrey is abducted from her Norman priory and taken to Brittany's court, she vows never to dishonor her family's ties by marrying a Breton brute. There is only one man who might change her mind: Tiarnán of Talensac, a handsome, skilled, and noble knight indeed. But Tiarnán does not love her, and when he marries a slip of a girl instead, Marie vows to become a nun as soon as she is able. But Tiarnán has a secret, and that slip of a girl betrays him once she learns of it. When Tiarnán disappears and is presumed dead, his widow marries his one time rival and assumes title to his land, which steadily begins to decline under her unskilled, merciless rule. Marie knows something is wrong, and only she is clear headed enough to rescue Tiarnán and return him to his rightful status. But can she do so before it is too late? Rich in romance, and intrigue, steeped in history and wonder, The Wolf Hunt is historical fiction at its best, by one of its most skilled practitioners.

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