SPIRIT WOLF by Gary D. Svee


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A first novel in which a boy and his father leave their snowbound Montana ranch to join the hunt for a man-killing wolf--a hunt that brings them face to face with dangers of the mind and man as well as nature. Although the year is 1910, the frontier is still a wild and dangerous place in Montana, where 12-year-old Nash Brae lives with his parents, Uriah and Mary. Indians bring with them the threat of old battles, homesteads are primitive and isolated, and wild animals roam free and are occasionally menacing. The Brues are living on the edge of poverty, fighting to make a go of their ranch, barely hanging on. When a wealthy neighbor posts a 500-dollar reward for the hide of an unusually large and vicious wolf that has been slaughtering his livestock, Uriah sees it as a chance that he and Nash must take, no matter how dangerous a midwinter hunt might be. But they are just two in a crowd of hunters made up of fellow ranchers, cowboys, trappers, and lowlifes attracted by the bounty. There is also an ancient Indian whose presence haunts the hunting camp and Uriah Brue, and it is the Indian, with his mystic ties to the great wolf, who makes the hunt a mythic battle for Nash and his father. A Western, but the furthest thing from a shoot-em-up. This is a compelling and sometimes cruel story told in good plain English, without sentimentality or bravado.

Pub Date: March 24th, 1987
Publisher: Walker