What if Little Red Riding Hood was real? Ninety years before the Brothers Grimm penned their version of "Little Red Riding Hood," an historic, gruesome series of events shocked all of Europe. Starting in 1764, an unidentified wolf-like animal ferociously mauled dozens of peasants in the Gévaudan region of France.Whispered rumors of unnatural creatures blended with age-old superstition to cause mass hysteria. Alarmed, King Louis XV sent his best huntsmen to rid the province of the beastly scourge, but this legendary massacre had only just begun. Scarlette, a 19-year-old seamstress who is laboring to make ends meet, lives under this dark threat. Although fearful of the nightmarish monster lurking in the surrounding forest, she remains naive and skeptical of the supernatural gossip. Until her grandmother is attacked. Scarlette learns that her grandmother has been infected by the animal's bite. Desperate to save her, Scarlette begins to uncover the dark secrets of her village and finds there are those who wish to keep their pasts hidden. As time grows short, Scarlette is befriended by a local nobleman and a woodcutter who both share an eerie history with the wolf. Scarlette must unravel the men's connection and solve a long-forgotten crime before her grandmother's infection spreads. Based on both the traditional Grimm fairy-tale and older known French versions of "Little Red Riding Hood," this Gothic novel is set against the historic 18th century Beast of Gévaudan attacks in a modern, accessible prose style. Unique to the genre, the novel revives the fable of the girl-in-the-red-cloak with a new historical angle that blurs the line between folklore and reality.
3 out of 5 (good)
This story is set in France about 90 years before the Brothers Grimm. There are a multitude of characters in it, all with their own tales to tell. Personally, I found this book to be on the slow side for the most part and then parts of it were rushed through. Some parts were skipped over all together but perhaps they just weren't of any benefit to the story. Of the characters, Francois was by far my favourite. Scarlette was okay and the Baron was just meh! Some of the characters are downright dislikeable. There is some action, some mystery and a couple of twists will keep you reading to the end.
* Verified Purchase ~ January 2013 *
Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!
Davonna Juroe loves ghost stories…as long as they’re not too scary. She tends toward an overactive imagination and startles easily, making her wonder why she’s writing ghostly tales. When she’s not playing her harp and writing spooky novels, she’s exploring old buildings or daydreaming about her next 80s-inspired Halloween costume. Besides reading and writing full-time, she can also be found taking photos of all things whimsical and fantasy-inspired in parks throughout the Pacific Northwest. Davonna currently lives in Seattle, Washington, home of the famous and magical Troll Bridge. Winterbay Abbey is Davonna’s third book. She is also the author of the Amazon-bestselling young adult novel Scarlette, a dark retelling of "Little Red Riding Hood" set in France. Davonna is currently working on Origin, a supernatural pop-science novel about the existence of mermaids.