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Through Wolf's Eyes    by Jane Lindskold order for
Through Wolf's Eyes
by Jane Lindskold
Order:  USA  Can
Tor, 2002 (2001)
Hardcover, Paperback
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Years before, young prince Barden led an expedition beyond the mountains against his father's wishes. They were never heard from again. Now the ambitious Earl Kestrel leads a party to attempt to locate any survivors, one of whom may be heir to the throne. They eventually locate a settlement burned to the ground, and are spied upon by a young woman who considers herself a wolf, but is the only one of her pack who can make fire.

Her wolf name is Firekeeper and she has lived amongst the pack from the time she was a small child. Encouraged by the pack leader, the One Male, Firekeeper makes cautious contact with the expedition, in particular with its youngest member, Derian Carter, who becomes her first human friend. She returns to court with them, shadowed by royal wolf Blind Seer and the great falcon Elation. There are fascinating adjustments to be made on both sides.

Firekeeper, optimistically named Lady Blysse (after Barden's daughter) by the Earl, shows us the posturing nobles of the royal court through a wolf's eyes, as they plot to convince the king that each should be his heir. Eventually their machinations involve neighboring kingdoms and the situation escalates into war. Along the way, Firekeeper makes new friends, in particular Lady Elise Archer, herself a contender for the throne. She also makes enemies, including a dangerous sorceress.

Through Wolf's Eyes is an intriguing read, with the combination of feral child and court intrigue well done, though the story itself advances slowly. But there's lots of room for sequels, with hints about the withdrawal of the wise royal animals from human lands in the past and a clear future role for Firekeeper as intermediary, in addition to her ongoing adventures in the development of her human side. I look forward to the next volume, Wolf's Head, Wolf's Heart.

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