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Wolf Unleashed

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Werewolves are kept as slaves. Exploited to perform dangerous labour, or kept as exotic pets by rich sadists who want a status symbol, werewolves have no rights. When Crystal’s brother is bitten by a rogue werewolf, her family is advised to think of him as dead. But she refuses to forget him. Looking for news from within the werewolf community leads her to purchase Thomas, a Werewolves are kept as slaves. Exploited to perform dangerous labour, or kept as exotic pets by rich sadists who want a status symbol, werewolves have no rights. When Crystal’s brother is bitten by a rogue werewolf, her family is advised to think of him as dead. But she refuses to forget him. Looking for news from within the werewolf community leads her to purchase Thomas, a rebellious werewolf with a string of abusive former owners. Crystal and Thomas must learn to trust each other enough to help solve each other’s problems. Together, they can work to build a movement aimed at bringing rights and justice to all. This is an urban fantasy, paranormal romance with a difference. It teems with intersectional issues of race, gender, and sexual identity. This is a story of injustice and anger, of love and compassion, of rebellion and hope.


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Werewolves are kept as slaves. Exploited to perform dangerous labour, or kept as exotic pets by rich sadists who want a status symbol, werewolves have no rights. When Crystal’s brother is bitten by a rogue werewolf, her family is advised to think of him as dead. But she refuses to forget him. Looking for news from within the werewolf community leads her to purchase Thomas, a Werewolves are kept as slaves. Exploited to perform dangerous labour, or kept as exotic pets by rich sadists who want a status symbol, werewolves have no rights. When Crystal’s brother is bitten by a rogue werewolf, her family is advised to think of him as dead. But she refuses to forget him. Looking for news from within the werewolf community leads her to purchase Thomas, a rebellious werewolf with a string of abusive former owners. Crystal and Thomas must learn to trust each other enough to help solve each other’s problems. Together, they can work to build a movement aimed at bringing rights and justice to all. This is an urban fantasy, paranormal romance with a difference. It teems with intersectional issues of race, gender, and sexual identity. This is a story of injustice and anger, of love and compassion, of rebellion and hope.

31 review for Wolf Unleashed

  1. 5 out of 5

    Rosalie Galloway

    Jessa Meats is -- words fail me. I’ve been working on this review for days and I’m not sure I can encapsulate how much I feel about this book, nor how highly I can commend the author’s work. To start, it was a riveting read, with hopping narrative tension and great pacing. I fell in love with Crystal, and my heart ached for Thomas. I read a couple of other books, then circled back, and read it again. Having slavery, rape, racism, and torture all in one book is a big ask for a lot of authors, but Jessa Meats is -- words fail me. I’ve been working on this review for days and I’m not sure I can encapsulate how much I feel about this book, nor how highly I can commend the author’s work. To start, it was a riveting read, with hopping narrative tension and great pacing. I fell in love with Crystal, and my heart ached for Thomas. I read a couple of other books, then circled back, and read it again. Having slavery, rape, racism, and torture all in one book is a big ask for a lot of authors, but the way these themes are handled is with dignity and respect -- and a deft hand. The PTSD of characters is handled well, and both the overt anti-racism/social justice themes and the deeper themes of trauma, and wars fought on the shoulders of children -- those were so well woven around and together. The underlying narrative question of people being blind to trauma and violence that leaves no visible scars has the underpinning of the blatant “werewolves can heal, so vicious corporal punishment is reasonable” and the deeper elements of not seeing the violence we are acculturated to, and the trauma of memories and emotional/psychological violence being invisible to the naked eye. Through all of this, the narrative that confronts rape and slavery is approached from the perspective of young black woman and a werewolf in chains. In this book, Jessica Meats manages to walk the tightrope of making tightly paced coming of age story, with the cutting analysis and commentary on intersectional racism, and cultural bigotry. The intersectionality is woven around the mystery as she tries to search out an save her brother Danny, who was bitten and sold into the werewolf slavery system. Her history with Danny allows for a couple of frank discussions about rape and consent in power dynamics, and shows that the author isn’t fooling around with a dubcon power structure between Crystal and Thomas. The consent-forward approach to the sex scenes was uplifting in an era of #metoo and the fact that consent can be sexy, but it MUST be explicit. As a survivor of rape trauma, I wish I had Thomas’ nose, to be able to read his partner as well as he can read Crystal’s sincerity. In that respect, this novel was even healing for me. Further, in a world that is still built on the foundations of slavery and colonialism, where the structures of labor exploitation affect so much of so many global cultures, this book manages to weave the matter-of-fact history of our timeline into an urban fantasy setting. Days later, I can not only recall some of the on-the-nose aspects of a critique of abject wealth inequality but on the second read-through, I caught more! There is a clear narrative perspective, and the characters have a narrative perspective that is different from the underlying authorial narrative of the book. In reading the book, I can tell the author thinks of Crystal as brave, and writes a compelling, relatable, and flawed young adult. Crystal has complex character development and growth over the book, she is really coming into her own as a young woman and a small business owner by the end of the novel, but it also feels like she is digging in for a fight. Thomas has found something bigger to fight in the course of his character development, and more to hope for than just survival. There are believable character pivots in the text. While the main pairing is M/F, Crystal is Bi, and her mom is in an F/F longterm relationship. As someone used to reading a lot of romance novels, an M/F pairing with one partner being explicitly Bi, out, and having an accepting partner? That is a gem right there. So much of our literary culture has been defined by the voices that shaped the 1700’s, or as is flippantly said in many a meme: “old dead white dudes”. Crystal comes from a position of some privilege, having a lawyer for a father, and an inheritance. Most of the things she is able to DO while moving the plot forward have underpinnings of an understanding of the multifaced nature of privilege and disadvantage. Crystal grew up as upper-middle-class and black. She is a bisexual woman, and the story at different points shows the intersectional nature of a very complex set of social pressures and prejudices. Her inheritance of a house and some money makes the inciting incident in the novel, and Crystal’s career choice both possible. Being her own boss, let her set a schedule of hours that allowed the plot to drive forward at pacing that made for more character development, as she neglected work to find Danny and drive places with Thomas. This novel is not a fetishization of violence like Shades of Grey despite being even darker in tone and content. This novel is a conversation about social structure, about inherited culture, about assumptions, and legal vs ethical. Crystal isn’t a perfect Mary Sue, and David Mattherson isn’t a mustache-twirling nemesis. Most of the character motivation for Emily can be inferred from Luna and from Thomas’ related on-screen experiences, and THE AUTHOR TRUSTS US to make those inferences. If this is how Jessica Meats is starting her career as a professional author, I can’t wait to see what is ahead, because I know she will deliver.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jeannie Zelos

    Wolf Unleashed, Jessica Meats Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews Genre: General fiction (adult), Sci-fi and Fantasy. I really wanted to love this book, it sounded so interesting, a unique take on the genre. It has some excellent characters too, and an interesting plot-line that I can see developing further within future books. And yet....it was interesting, it was well written, paced to keep the reader engaged and yet somehow I kept putting it to one side. Possibly it was the sheer unpleasantne Wolf Unleashed, Jessica Meats Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews Genre: General fiction (adult), Sci-fi and Fantasy. I really wanted to love this book, it sounded so interesting, a unique take on the genre. It has some excellent characters too, and an interesting plot-line that I can see developing further within future books. And yet....it was interesting, it was well written, paced to keep the reader engaged and yet somehow I kept putting it to one side. Possibly it was the sheer unpleasantness of the idea of keep werewolves as pets/slaves, and of breeding them for that purpose, taking away the children and selling them. Its all too reminiscent for me of the human trade in slaves where non whites were considered sub-humans and we used and abused them. Although it made for a great main plot it did make me feel incredibly uncomfortable and guilty as a human for the past atrocities white people forced onto non-whites. If you can set that aside and enjoy the story for what it is, fiction and well written, then this is a series you'll enjoy. I might try later books as they come out, I know once the imbalance starts to get addressed I'll be happier reading about these people. Its an excellent look at human nature, how ready we are to believe what “the authorities” tell us, which of course is what benefits a few powerful people the most, but gets dressed as if its helping everyone. Cynic? Me? There's a quote from Edmund Burke that suits this book really well, it goes something like this... “all that is needed for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing”. Here we've a handful of good people, starting with Crystal, doing something which hopefully will grow, but it isn't going to be easy. Even then if Crystal's brother hadn't been bitten she would still have gone along with the official line that this treatment of werewolves is essential for them and us. It mirrors what happens so often, as humans we mostly ignore or turn a blind eye to distasteful practices and injustices until we're forced to confront them personally. Stars: Three, a really well written story, but which made me feel so guilty for similar human past practices it affected my enjoyment of the story ARC supplied by Netgalley and Publishers.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Katherine Hebert

    Unique Wolf Unleashed is quite honestly unlike any story I’ve ever read. (And I love to read!) It’s about how werewolves are kept as slaves, but focuses on one human (Crystal) who buys one wolf (Thomas) and they can work together to find Thomas’s sister among other goals. It’s definitely a bit out there but I prefer to appreciate it’s creativity instead of critiquing it. It’s not for everyone but those who can look past it and appreciate it will enjoy it. It’s well written and intriguing.

  4. 4 out of 5

    -RadioactiveBookworm-

    Before I say anything about this book, this is the first one I’ve read by author Jessica Meats, and I’m obsessed with it. A pretty solid book at over 400 pages, I powered through it. I couldn’t get enough, and if I could rate this book at 10 stars, I absolutely would. I don’t have any complaints, and if this is how all of the author’s books are, I can’t wait to get my hands on more. Check out my full review here! https://radioactivebookreviews.wordpr... Before I say anything about this book, this is the first one I’ve read by author Jessica Meats, and I’m obsessed with it. A pretty solid book at over 400 pages, I powered through it. I couldn’t get enough, and if I could rate this book at 10 stars, I absolutely would. I don’t have any complaints, and if this is how all of the author’s books are, I can’t wait to get my hands on more. Check out my full review here! https://radioactivebookreviews.wordpr...

  5. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    I have noticed that a lot of reviews mention how this book isn't for everyone and I have to agree. There is a lot going on in this story, and acts of discrimination and violence come up regularly. Werewolves are kept as slaves and pets which sheds some horrifying light onto the slave trade of history. The book overall it is very well written, and the main character Crystal develops well and is very strong. The story develops well, and I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series. I have noticed that a lot of reviews mention how this book isn't for everyone and I have to agree. There is a lot going on in this story, and acts of discrimination and violence come up regularly. Werewolves are kept as slaves and pets which sheds some horrifying light onto the slave trade of history. The book overall it is very well written, and the main character Crystal develops well and is very strong. The story develops well, and I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Gaby

    Maybe the metaphors were a little forced and the resolutions a little too easy but ultimately a fun book with interesting characters. Hard to put down. Worth a read specially if you like werewolves.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Sfarim

  8. 5 out of 5

    Simon Hovell

  9. 4 out of 5

    Tiffany

  10. 4 out of 5

    Auhmanduh

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Meats

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ben

  13. 5 out of 5

    Estance DH

  14. 4 out of 5

    Brenda Knight

  15. 5 out of 5

    Karen Mann

  16. 5 out of 5

    Elliot

  17. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

  18. 4 out of 5

    Timothy Rowe

  19. 4 out of 5

    Meyari McFarland

  20. 4 out of 5

    Margaret

  21. 5 out of 5

    Carina Morris

  22. 5 out of 5

    Janelane

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kim

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lieske

  25. 4 out of 5

    Morgane

  26. 4 out of 5

    Julia

  27. 5 out of 5

    Anna-Lena Fuller

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tweegy

  29. 5 out of 5

    Noemi

  30. 4 out of 5

    Caroline

  31. 4 out of 5

    Rosie J.

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