Den Of Wolves: A Blackthorn & Grim Novel by Juliet MarillierDen Of Wolves: A Blackthorn & Grim Novel by Juliet Marillier

Den Of Wolves: A Blackthorn & Grim Novel

byJuliet Marillier

Hardcover | November 1, 2016

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The “powerful and emotionally-charged”* fantasy series from the author of the Sevenwaters novels continues, as Blackthorn and Grim face haunting secrets and old adversaries...
 
Feather bright and feather fine, None shall harm this child of mine...
 
Healer Blackthorn knows all too well the rules of her bond to the fey: seek no vengeance, help any who ask, do only good. But after the recent ordeal she and her companion, Grim, have suffered, she knows she cannot let go of her quest to bring justice to the man who ruined her life.
 
Despite her personal struggles, Blackthorn agrees to help the princess of Dalriada in taking care of a troubled young girl who has recently been brought to court, while Grim is sent to the girl’s home at Wolf Glen to aid her wealthy father with a strange task—repairing a broken-down house deep in the woods. It doesn’t take Grim long to realize that everything in Wolf Glen is not as it seems—the place is full of perilous secrets and deadly lies...
 
Back at Winterfalls, the evil touch of Blackthorn’s sworn enemy reopens old wounds and fuels her long-simmering passion for justice. With danger on two fronts, Blackthorn and Grim are faced with a heartbreaking choice—to stand once again by each other’s side or to fight their battles alone...
Juliet Marillier was born in Dunedin, New Zealand, a town with strong Scottish roots. She graduated from the University of Otago with degrees in languages and music, and has had a varied career that includes teaching and performing music as well as working in government agencies. Juliet now lives in a hundred-year-old cottage near the ...
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Title:Den Of Wolves: A Blackthorn & Grim NovelFormat:HardcoverDimensions:448 pages, 9.31 × 6.25 × 1.5 inPublished:November 1, 2016Publisher:Penguin Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0451467035

ISBN - 13:9780451467034

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Brilliant, once again Juliet Marillier can do no wrong, in my eyes. This was a beautiful, exciting conclusion (or maybe not!) to the Blackthorn and Grim series. My only regret was reading it as fast as I did: Ms Marillier's writing is so lovely it's worth slowing down to enjoy.
Date published: 2016-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Magical! So so amazing. I can't believe this is the end of the series, it was a bittersweet race of me both not wanting and wanting to finish the book. Juliet Marillier is a brilliant storyteller, I really hope she'll come back to Blackthorn and Grim again some day. I'm so sad to have to move on from what has become my favourite series.
Date published: 2016-10-31

Read from the Book

1BardanHe's curled in a ball, shivering, under a piercing white moon. He'd forgotten how bright the moon was, how its light could go right through a man, cold in his bones, searching out what was hidden deep. Go away, he breathes, arms up over his head, knees to his chest, trying to be invisible. Leave me alone. But the light seeks him out, finding a way through the high canopy of the beeches, through the rough blanket of bracken and fern he's scrambled together, through the rags of his clothing, right inside him. Into his mind, tangling his thoughts. Into his heart, probing his wounds. It's been so long. How long has it been? How long has he been away?An owl cries, eerie, hollow. In the undergrowth, something screams. Something dies. Stop, he whispers. Don't. But nobody's listening. His words fall into the quiet of the night forest and are lost. He's lost. The cold moon will kill him before he can find his way. The way back to . . . to . . .A fragment comes to him; then it's gone. Another piece, and another. A story . . . but the meaning slips away before he can grasp it. Shivering body. Chattering teeth. A man . . . A man building . . . A man making a house, a strange house . . . He can feel the wood under his hands, his crooked hands . . . Long ago, so long ago . . . Was there a rhyme for the building, a charm, a spell? Crooked hands. Crooked yew. He makes the words with his lips, but there is no sound. Blackthorn, ivy and crooked yew.He can't remember much. But what he remembers is enough, for now. Enough to keep his heart beating; enough to keep him breathing through the cold night, until morning. The beech tree will shelter him; she will spread her strong arms over him, shutting out the chill eye of the moon. And when the sun rises and the long night is over, he knows where he will go.2CaraThe forest knew everything. News passed on a breath of wind, in the call of an owl, in the small pattern of a squirrel's footsteps. The trout in the stream learned it. The lark soaring high above saw it. The knowledge was in the hearts of the trees and in the mysterious rustling of their leaves. It was a deep-down wisdom, as solemn as a druid's prayer.She never talked about it. Not with Father, not with Aunt Della, not even with Gormán. She'd learned long ago that if she spoke of that great knowledge, people thought she was being foolish or fanciful. That didn't matter. What mattered was saying it to the trees, over and over, so they knew she was their friend and guardian and could hear their slow voices. She spoke to each of them in turn, in a whisper, with her body against the trunk and her cheek pressed to the bark, as if she and the tree shared the same beating heart. Rough oak, smooth willow, furrowed ash, every tree in the wood. I will protect you. I will guard you. I give you my word.The promise wasn't foolish or fanciful. It made perfect sense. One day the holding at Wolf Glen would be hers to watch over. Mother was dead. Father would never marry again. There was nobody else to inherit the house, the farm, the forest. All of it, and all the folk who lived and worked there, would be hers to care for, hers to look after.Father didn't talk about the future, even now that Cara was in her sixteenth year. But she knew he expected her to marry someday and produce an heir. She let herself dream, sometimes, about what might have been if she had not been a girl and the only child. She could have become a master wood-carver. She could have spent all day making creatures and chests and chairs with fine decoration, toys for children, platters to hold fruit, spindles and cradles and walking staves with owls on them. Or she could have been a forester like Gormán. Gormán had been her friend since almost before she could walk. He had taught her the properties of different woods. He had shown her how to use a sharp knife without hurting herself or ruining good materials. Sometimes she would open up her special storage chest and get out the collection of little animals she'd made over the years. She loved them all, from the rabbit she had crafted from pine at six years old to the owl she'd coaxed not long ago from a well-weathered block of oak. The owl had its wings lifted, ready for flight, and when Cara looked at it she imagined spreading wings of her own and flying off over the treetops, wild and free. When she had held each of her little creatures in turn, stroked each, spoken softly to each, she would shut them away in the chest again.Soon, she knew, Father would start looking for a prospective husband for her. Father and Aunt Della had set their expectations high, hoping for a chieftain's son. But wouldn't that mean she would have to leave Wolf Glen? That could not happen. She would be like a sapling pulled up roughly, roots and all, then shoved into barren ground where it could not thrive. She would turn into a dull shadow of a woman whom nobody could possibly want as a wife. And who would look after the forest if she was not here? Her father loved Wolf Glen as she did, but his love was tinged with a darkness she did not understand.Some girls were already wed at fifteen. Some were mothers. But that was not possible for her. It was unthinkable. If she married, how would she have time for any of the things that mattered? There would be no time to hear the many voices of the forest, no time to watch the patterns of leaves and light, no time to breathe the crisp air, no time to feel the weight of a fine piece of wood in her hands, seeing in her mind the forms that lay within. What if the husband her father chose for her did not understand these things? What if she tried to talk to him and her words suddenly vanished, the way they did sometimes when she was talking to Father or Aunt Della? The suitor would think her a half-wit, and Father would be furious, and that would make it even more impossible to get words out.Perhaps she could refuse to wed unless the man loved the same things she loved. Somewhere, surely, there must be at least one other person like her. If she could summon the right words, maybe she could persuade Father to wait awhile. Some women married and had babies when they were quite old, twenty or even five-and-twenty. Her maid Alba had told her so. There was plenty of time. Years.Or so she thought, up till the day the wild man came to Wolf Glen, and everything changed.She'd been out by the barn, showing Gormán a drawing she'd made for a carving of a squirrel. He'd promised to look out for the right piece of wood but warned her it might take some time to find it. Off you go, then, he'd said in his gruff way. I've my big ax to sharpen, and I don't want you anywhere near while I'm doing it, young lady.Alba had come to the yard too, but now she was nowhere in sight. One of the farm cats had produced a litter of kittens not long ago, and Cara guessed her maid was in the barn petting them; Alba loved cats. It was a good opportunity to go walking on her own-not far enough to get either Gormán or Alba in trouble, just down to the heartwood house. She could be back before anyone noticed she was gone. There was a rule about wandering off without a companion, and Aunt Della would be unhappy if she found out Cara had broken it. The rule was nonsense. Cara could find her way home from anywhere in the forest, even places where she had never been before. The trees were her friends. What harm could she possibly come to? Perhaps Aunt Della thought her stupid enough to get in the way of an ax like that giant implement Gormán was working on now. That was just as silly. Gormán had taught her to be careful in the workshop. She knew how tools should be used, how they were kept sharp, how they were protected from rust. She knew how to avoid cutting herself or someone else when she used her wood-carving knives. But she couldn't explain that to Aunt Della. In her aunt's opinion, a young lady should spend her time sewing, spinning, weaving, and learning how to run a household, not messing about with sharp objects and making things that were of no possible use to anyone. Most times, while Cara was still struggling to find the right words, Aunt Della would end the conversation by saying, "Oh, Cara, you're such a child." But that wasn't true. She had her moon-bleeding now, and her body was changing, and that meant, surely, that she was not a child but a woman.The heartwood house was not much of a house, only an old ruin in a clearing. Each winter it crumbled away a bit more. Although it was not very far from the barn, the pattern of the trees and the rise and fall of the land meant it could barely be seen until a person was almost on top of it. Father had been building it at the time of her mother's death. Once Suanach was gone, work on the house had ceased. It had been left as it was, hardly even a shelter for forest creatures, since it had no roof. In another year or two the last of it would fall and the forest would reclaim the clearing. Cara liked the quiet way the wild things were moving to blanket the broken structure.When she was little, but old enough to be curious, she'd been full of questions about the heartwood house. In those days she'd had no trouble saying what she wanted to, straight out. She'd been brimming with words. Why was it called that? What was it for? Why couldn't they finish building it? Back then, more of the structure had been standing, and it had been easier to imagine what it might have been like had the work been finished. She had noticed, even then, that there were different kinds of wood in it. She'd wandered through the ruin touching them, looking at the colors and the patterns of them, guessing what they were, until Father had caught her at it and ordered her away from the place, saying it was not safe. He did not answer any of her questions. Indeed, he was so stern and sad that she stopped asking him.Aunt Della gave all the questions the same response: she had not been living at Wolf Glen while Cara's mother was alive, and when Suanach had died, the heartwood house had been abandoned. So Aunt Della knew nothing at all about it except, she said, that it was a subject best not discussed, and especially not in T—la's hearing. Cara would be better off putting her excess curiosity into learning her letters and numbers or improving her plain sewing.Gormán knew the answers, some of them anyway, but even he was reluctant to talk. When she was a little older Cara realized her persistence could have got him into trouble. He could have lost his position in the household and been sent away from Wolf Glen, which had been his home for years. Gormán was a kindly man, and patient with her. Why was it called a heartwood house? That was a name from an old tale. No, he did not know the tale, but a heartwood house was said to be lucky. When Cara had commented with five-year-old bluntness that it had not been very lucky for her mother, since she had died, Gormán had crouched down, taken her hands in his and looked her straight in the eye."Cara," he'd said, his voice so soft and sorrowful it made her feel shivery, "don't ever say that to your father. Promise me.""But why?""Because he thinks, if he'd got it finished, she might have . . . because it would make him very, very sad. Promise.""I promise." She'd hardly understood, back then. "Why didn't he get it finished?""Never mind that.""You could have built it," she'd said.That had made Gormán smile. "Finding the wood, getting all the pieces ready, maybe. Putting a house together, no. I'm no builder. And this would be quite a tricky sort of house. A very special house." Then, in a different tone, "Want to see a thrush's nest? I spotted one this morning, up in the big oak."Her mother and the heartwood house and the things she could not ask her father had all been instantly forgotten. A thrush's nest! With eggs in it, or even little baby birds! She was, after all, only five years old.But the promise she'd made was a deep-down thing, and Cara did remember it. As time passed and she grew up, the heartwood house crumbled away year by year, and Father did not mend it, and never once did she ask him why.There was a special tree down by the heartwood house. Cara called it the guardian oak. When she was little, it had seemed to her so tall that its topmost branches surely touched the clouds. It had seemed a being of wonder and secrets, full of hiding places, tenanted by all manner of creatures, the seen and the unseen. She'd been a confident climber almost from the time she could walk, and she had spent more time than her father and aunt ever imagined up in that tree, safe in the cradle of its great arms, pretending to be a squirrel or a bird or a beetle, peering out through the foliage to see folk about their work, hoping nobody would come looking for her before she was ready to be found. Birds would gather on the branches around her, preening their feathers, making their subtle sounds, taking so little notice of her that she might as well have been part of the tree. Sometimes they would come and perch on her shoulders or in her hair. She used to tell the guardian oak stories, the kind of stories little children made up, and she thought the tree replied in a voice so slow and deep that human ears could not really understand it, though she knew what it was saying: Ah, yes. Tell me more, small one. Even now she told the tree her secrets. It was so much easier to talk to trees than to people. People didn't stay quiet and listen, really listen. People interrupted. They fidgeted. You could see from their faces that their thoughts were at least half on something quite different. Aunt Della would be thinking, How will this strange child ever find a husband? Father would be lost in some dream of the past, his eyes full of a sorrow his only daughter could not lift. Gormán was a good listener, but even he would have his mind on whatever job he had to start on as soon as Cara had finished her tale.

Editorial Reviews

Praise for Juliet Marillier and the Blackthorn & Grim Novels   “Marillier is a fine fantasy writer.”—Anne McCaffrey, New York Times bestselling author of the Dragonriders of Pern series   “An enchanting tale.”—Jacqueline Carey, New York Times bestselling author of Poison Fruit   “A rich tale that resonates of deepest myth peopled by well-drawn characters who must sort out their personal demons, while unraveling mysteries both brutally human and magical.”—Kristen Britain, New York Times bestselling author of the Green Rider series   “Utter perfection...Filled with irresistible characters and the kind of rich, evocative magic that will take your breath away.”—*The BiblioSanctum   “[A] graceful and mesmerizing tribute to heroes anywhere and anywhen.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)