Kasen Gray has been followed for most of his life by a wolf that no one else can see. After realizing that no one believed him and being told it’s all in his head, he found it was best to keep the secret to himself and call his strange behavior a mental illness instead.
Kasen is now seventeen, and the secret is becoming too dark and heavy to keep hidden, and his best friend Juniper has taken notice of his constant state of exhaustion and fear. He can’t keep the wolf under control for much longer, and with Juniper getting closer, the wolf is becoming unexpectedly violent. The only thing worse than it lashing out at him is it lashing out at his best friend who he’s falling in love with.
The wolf is changing. That much Kasen knows.
But at this point, he isn’t sure if he can keep Juniper and himself alive.
This wasn’t the first time the boy had seen this wolf. He knew it wouldn’t be the last. It would haunt him like a ghost. He didn’t know for how long. But he quickly learned two simple facts. No one else could see the wolf. And no one would believe him.
Kasen is a 17-year-old boy who has seen a black wolf since he was 4. His parents never believed him and made it look like a mental illness, but K has a scar that the wolf has left on him, his mind could not do that.
Yesterday threw me off. I’m paying too much attention to my symptoms, my anxiety making me believe I’m feeling some already. My vision goes out once for a second and I panic, thinking it’s the Wolf already coming back when in reality, it’s just my mind playing tricks on me. Maybe that’s what this whole thing is to begin with. I don’t know. But last I checked, if something scratches you deep enough to leave a scar, chances are it’s not a hallucination. My scar is the only thing convincing me this is real.
K’s “illness” was too much for his parents (at least he thinks so) and it ended up ruining their marriage. Their mother abandoned them never to return when K was only 10 years old, from that day on his father dedicated himself to drinking and K was forced to take care of himself, the house and his father.
Juniper, K’s best friend, has been his greatest support. Both of them have become absolutely inseparable and fully trust each other. The pain has probably helped bring them together. June lives with her uncles after her parents died in a car accident caused by someone texting instead of looking where he was going. June’s uncles are wonderful, they adopted her as their daughter and the truth is that they support K as much as possible too.
“You know me, K, you know how I am. Emotional, messy, and a constant mental wreck.” I laugh, and so does she, the sound warming me in spite of this cold. “But I’m okay.“
They are both absolutely in love with the other, but they are afraid of ruining their friendship, so neither wants to bring it up. The problem is that both let it glimpse at times causing doubt in the other. However, their friendship is more important.
Besides, Kasen is worse than ever. When the wolf appears, symptoms like nausea, headache, and dizziness accompany it. His hours of sleep are absolutely insufficient and the symptoms are getting worse by the day. June knows something is wrong with him, but she had never seen it so bad, so she scolds him until he confesses about the wolf.
Kasen was super scared that June would not believe him, and the truth is that it seemed impossible to her, but it was absolutely clear too that he was not lying, even if it was only in his mind. So she decided to help him.
June’s support improves things at first, but something seems to change with the wolf and things get even more complicated. The wolf doesn’t like June, or maybe he does… but like food.
I suffered a lot reading this story. K and June are SO lovable characters, and they’ve both suffered SO MUCH that it really hurts to see them having a hard time. Fortunately they have each other.
As for their romantic relationship… This book invented the category of slow-burn romance ? (it’s not a critic, it just makes me laugh). But other than that, it’s one of the cutest relationships I’ve ever seen. Plus the two of them had loved each other unconditionally as friends for a long time, so their relationship is really special.
“Juniper, you are beautiful. Out here,” he brushes my cheek with his fingers before moving his hand to rest over my heart, “but especially in here. There is no one else out there worth caring for, worth feeling this for. And if you don’t feel the same, please break my heart. It would be a privilege to have it broken by you.”
The book seemed extremely original to me. I feel like I spent almost the entire book without understanding what was happening with the wolf, but without being able to stop reading. My brain was completely blank on theories (except it could be like Kafka’s Metamorphosis I really hoped it wasn’t).
Another thing that seemed curious to me is that this book actually has only a little paranormal touch, which is usually not enough for me, but so many “normal” things happen in the story that at times I forgot about the wolf and did not care. Although when it appears… what an annoying beast?.
The only thing to keep in mind is that the story is slow. Each scene is extremely descriptive, which allows it to be perfectly visualized, but it slows down its reading, as well as some ideas that were repeated or some moments that confused me. But, the truth is that the story caught me enough that this didn’t bother me and I give it 5 stars anyway for how powerful were the feelings that it gave me.
Technically, this is the story of a 17-year-old boy who sees a wolf. But it is actually much more than that. It is the story of two best friends who have had to endure a lot. That at 17 have been forced to mature, but have each other to stand up.
He’s at the counter, smiling at the lady behind it, laughing at something stupid she probably said. He’s always been better at talking to strangers than me. Still awkward and secretly wishing he could be somewhere else, but better than me.
It is a wonderful story of much suffering, but in which you can see the power that love has to move forward. That deals with mental problems, even if the wolf isn’t really one. In addition to present how fragile and short life can be, and how the decisions of one person can modify the destiny of many.
The wind picks up, the snow flurries falling faster, but never sticking to the ground for more than a second. Kind of like us. We’re born. We fall through life, until one day we’re just gone. Here one second, gone the next, before you can even blink. Before you can take a breath. Before you can beg them to stay.
It really broke my soul, but at least it has a happy ending. What scares me is that it has a book 2 ?.
Bye bye ?
PS: I found this video from The Ross Cam channel that really looks like a parody of K’s life?.