Black Wolf by Eileen Merriman
I’d been looking forward to reading Black Wolf, the second in the ‘Black Spiral’ Trilogy, after devouring the first book, Violet Black, so I began reading with a palpable sense of excitement. I was not disappointed!
We once more follow the story of a group of teenagers who have survived the deadly M-Fever and afterward have special abilities that include enhanced cognition, communicating telepathically, and changing form into animal alter-egos. Kidnapped by the sinister Foundation and forced to do missions for them, their families think they are dead. They are isolated in a facility in the middle of the Australian desert and stuck in an impossible situation.
Violet is back from an assignment in Germany that went terribly wrong, and now she doesn’t know who to trust, especially as she grieves the death of Ethan, with whom she’d had a very close bond. Phoenix was part of the failed assignment, and he thinks that the only people who care for him either think he is dead or hates his guts – especially Violet.
But when things at the Foundation take an even more sinister turn, Violet and Phoenix join forces to escape. In doing so, they put themselves in deadly danger. But they also forge a powerful bond, one that will have unexpected and life-changing consequences.
Black Wolf is utterly absorbing and riveting. I read it one sitting as I just couldn’t put it down, and I imagine other readers – both teenagers and older – will have the same response. Black Wolf deliverers a page-turning, thrilling read, with just the right balance of steamy romance and high action thrills, all the while exploring deeper themes of love and loss and finding our place in the world. When is the final book in the trilogy publishing? Hopefully, we won’t have too long to wait.
Reviewer: Karen McMillan
Penguin, RRP $19.99