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Wild Blood

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A teenager finds himself walking through a nightmarish world where the most popular speed metal band of the day changes into werewolves more frequently than they change keys. Alternately terrifying and darkly humorous, Wild Blood combines the entire mythology of werewolves with a hip rock-n-roll sensibility.

240 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 1994

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About the author

Nancy A. Collins

274 books622 followers
Nancy A. Collins (born 10 September 1959) is a United States horror fiction writer best known for her series of vampire novels featuring her character Sonja Blue. Collins has also written for comic books, including the Swamp Thing series, Jason Vs. Leatherface, Predator: Hell Come A Walkin and her own one-shot Dhampire: Stillborn.

Collins was born in McGehee, Arkansas, United States. She lived in New Orleans, Louisiana in the 1980s; after time in New York City and Atlanta, Georgia she settled in Wilmington, North Carolina in the late 2000s.

Collins has written twenty novels since 1989, many of which refer to and directly include races of creatures the author calls Pretenders, monsters from myth and legend passing as human to better hunt their prey.

Collins has also written a number of highly acclaimed Southern Gothic short stories and novellas, most of which are set in Seven Devils, Arkansas, a highly fictionalized version of her hometown.

Most recently, she has focused her attention onto the Golgotham urban fantasy series,published by Penguin. Golgotham is the 'supernatural' ghetto of New York City, where creatures from myth and folklore--including witches,shapeshifters,leprechauns and centaurs--live and work in uneasy alliance with mankind.

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5 stars
83 (28%)
4 stars
100 (34%)
3 stars
78 (26%)
2 stars
19 (6%)
1 star
12 (4%)
Displaying 1 - 19 of 19 reviews
Profile Image for Craig.
4,893 reviews111 followers
November 9, 2018
Curt Siodmak never pictured Lawrence Talbot having days like this... Despite having perhaps the most awful cover of any paperback horror novel ever (which is saying something, I know), Wild Blood is a pretty good werewolf novel. I wouldn't rank it up with the Sonja Blue novels, but it does have some seriously creepy sections interspersed with some wry dark humor. It's also a very '90s-style punk rock story. There are some graphically violent sexual scenes, so anyone triggered by such should avoid it.
Profile Image for Althea Ann.
2,230 reviews1,005 followers
March 3, 2013
I really like Nancy Collins for fun, not-too-serious horror novels...
by which I do not mean humorous, but trashily explicit and violent.
They're like B-movies in print. She's best known for her Sonya Blue
vampire series, but in Wild Blood, Collins takes on werewolves.
After his parents die, college student Skinner discovers that he is
actually a werewolf. A local werewolf gang (who are also a rock band)
finds him and expects him to join up with them, but he is shocked by
their brutal, sadistic behavior, and their viciously hierarchical
power structure. But does he have a choice? He is, after all, one of
Definitely recommended for all werewolf fans.
Profile Image for Josh.
1,628 reviews146 followers
March 12, 2020
Werewolves, fantasy, an intriguing and well defined lore, and a bevy of blood – that’s some of what you can expect from reading Wild Blood. Oh, and there’s plenty of sex, murder and mayhem…

I was really impressed with this interesting and entertaining take on the werewolf sub-genre. Despite the synopsis leaning towards the hack and slash with ghoulish afterthoughts, the story itself is actually one of redemption and discovery. Skinner Cade is a lone wolf character (get it?) who eventually finds himself part of a pack; his life bigger and brighter than he thought possible (though there are some ‘teething’ problems along the way). Before too long he’s living and breathing a b-grade horror movie with all the graphic gore and explicit sex scenes he can handle.

This book won’t appeal to everyone but if you’re into the mass market paperback scene then you’re bound to want to seek your teeth into this one.
Profile Image for Red Lace Reviews.
289 reviews56 followers
July 13, 2018
When tragedy befalls Skinner Cade, he sets out to discover his origins - just who was his biological parents? Unable to keep his temper in check, his search soon takes a detour as he lands himself in prison, where an incident results in an all-out bloodbath. A monster resides within Skinner, one he's unsure how to handle, and when he's introduced to the world of the vargr, he's not even sure he wants to learn of his ancestry.

(WARNING: This review contains MAJOR spoilers.)

This was an impulsive buy at the local secondhand bookstore, as first and foremost, the cover caught my eye. It seemed almost comedic, so I was under the impression it would include some sort of black humour. I was wrong, however, and was confronted with over the top depictions of rape and incest that were heavily integrated into the plot itself. Don’t get me wrong, I love werewolves; the more brutal the better, but this was the first time where such disturbingly sexualised topics dominated the pages. It became apparent that important story elements were sacrificed in order to rush the plot along, and focus primarily on graphic content. I should also mention that I don’t have any issues with graphic content concerning sex, however if I feel such matters damage the overall story, then that’s where my problems lie. Despite being a short book, a lot actually happens; there’s before, during and after prison, as well as the rut melee with a lot in between. There certainly were interesting characters and predicaments that Skinner got himself into, but they were so underdeveloped that I just couldn’t get a proper sense of them.

Let’s start with the prison and Skinner’s relationship with Cheater. There appeared to be a connection between them, or something I couldn’t quite grasp. Cheater’s dream and use of the term “Prince” was certainly interesting, but it was so ridiculously vague. I also felt that the friendship in itself was bewildering, as Skinner, of whom was supposed to be a “good guy”, was perfectly fine with his companion stealing and murdering. If this had of been fleshed out, with time given to properly establish them both, then it just might have made sense. This goes for the later half of the book as well, where things rapidly progressed until Skinner was suddenly of great importance.

I actually liked Skinner to an extent, and I enjoyed that his life took a radical turn into the world of claws and teeth, but I couldn’t attach myself nor particularly care what came of him when his development left a lot to be desired. As a person, Skinner often fluctuated between being decent and being rather questionable, with what actually drove his actions leaving nothing but confusion. I think the intention was for him to be the unexpected hero; the good man thrown into the fray and always coming out on top - which I, ultimately, didn't care for. Don't even get me started on the last minute romance attempt, because it was positively absurd.

The shock factor loses its value if overexposed, at least in my case. Sure, the first rape scene (of a dog, I might add), was very much unpleasant, but each taboo subject thereafter only numbed me further. By the end, I wasn't even remotely surprised by what transpired. It was, without a doubt, very curious that Collins decided to go down the route she did - painting the species of "vargr" in a very ugly light, moreso than the usual bloodthirsty monsters of the genre. As it was, I had a hope that the entire race would perish.

In conclusion - I've changed my initial rating to accurately reflect my thoughts, from three stars to only two. It was overly rushed to appropriately develop the plot and characters, instead relying upon disturbing content to carry it through. A shame, as the concept itself was intriguing.

Notable Quote:

"The vargr are all belly and eyes. They desire all that they see. And that which they can not have - they destroy. Completely and utterly."

© Red Lace 2018

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Profile Image for Amanda.
57 reviews3 followers
March 10, 2011
I'll read any werewolf novel once, and Wild Blood was not as bad as some I've read. The story is about a teen who suddenly discovers he's a werewolf after his adoptive parents die and he begins investigating his past. The action is pretty constant throughout the story, though it's hard to summon much sympathy for the main character (i.e. I've already forgotten his name). After reading through other reviews, no one else mentions him by name either. Probably because the characters in this story are one-dimensional and not very well developed. You are thrust into the action in a sink-or-swim manner of pacing. If you like mindless gory violence, this might be the book for you. However, if you prefer character-driven stories where readers can really get into the mind of the characters and sympathize with them, this is definitely not your book.

I notice most reviewers cite the author's Sonja Blue series, which I've never read, so I can't compare the writing style (however the character of Sonja Blue has a cameo scene near the end of the book). The werewolves in this book are not hero-types or good guys. They commit brutal acts of violence because of an inherent 'violent' tendency which is explained when the main character is initiated into the local werewolf 'gang' (i.e. their preference for rape as opposed to consensual sex, which even main character is not immune to). I think overall, the book woould have been more engaging if there was at least one Good Guy to balance the overwhelming number of villains or anti-heroes that proliferate the story-- especially Cheater, the teen's mentor who befriends him in prison. As the story progressed, I found myself uninterested in whether or not the "hero" eventually came to a good end. While mildly entertaining, this was a book I could put down easily and pick up something else to read because I wasn't able to become involved in the story.
Profile Image for Redsteve.
1,049 reviews14 followers
November 4, 2019
A decent read but not as good as the author's "Sunglasses After Dark". Wild Blood exists in the same world as many of Collins' books - a world where the "Pretending Races" lurk in the shadows, feeding on and manipulating humanity in secret. I was happy to see her write a werewolf novel. While the Vargr are mentioned in her other books, they rarely appear - vampires, and to a lesser extent, demons and seraphs get top billing. Hell, even ogres get more of a part. Like Nancy Collins other works, this one is dark and gory - borderline splatterpunk. Note one section of this novel originally appeared as the short story "Vargr Rule" in the Shock Rock anthology.
Profile Image for denudatio_pulpae.
1,302 reviews20 followers
November 16, 2019
"Zew krwi" to moje pierwsze spotkanie z autorką. Poszukując krwistych horrorów o wilkołakach natknęłam się właśnie na tę książkę. Opowiada ona o Skinnerze Cade, samotniku szukającym własnej drogi życiowej, a poszukiwania te okazują się być zaskakująco krwiste i futrzaste.

Skinner Cade zawsze był inny niż wszystkie dzieciaki. Po śmierci matki dowiedział się, że jest adoptowany i wyruszył w podróż aby poznać prawdę o sobie. Niestety szybko wpadł w tarapaty i wylądował w więzieniu, gdzie dwóch opryszków chciało mu zrobić krzywdę... Wtedy we własnej obronie, dość nieoczekiwanie dla niego samego i wyżej wymienionych więźniów, przemienił się w wilkołaka i po raz pierwszy posmakował ludzkiego ciała i krwi. Czy mu zasmakowało, tego dowiecie się już z książki.

Dalej jest już tylko więcej krwi, mięcha i wnętrzności. A w komplecie do tego dużo seksu, futra i jeszcze więcej krwi i wnętrzności. Wrażliwym na takie tematy książki nie polecamy.
Rockowa kapela Vargr rządzi :)
Fanom wilkołaków (a nawet kojotołaków), którzy mają ochotę na trochę rozrywki bez zbytniego wysilania umysłu na pewno książka się spodoba.
14 reviews
May 28, 2020
I don't see where I can leave a book review for knuckles and tales by Nancy Collins.so I will leave it here. . I just finished this in a few days here in northern Michigan in covid quarantine. Collins is a very twisted little lady. she is also fantastic. I only recently discovered her work in the horror anthology book thrillers. the knuckles book has 15 short horror stories. book comes in at 339 pages. you can see that her stories are clearly influenced by her being born in Arkansas. she loves inbreeding.carnival freeks and southern tales of the macabre.her writing style is fantastic. a lot of her stories are being told by men and as a woman author she pulls it off wonderfully. I had never read a female horror author before. I started reading hard in the late 1970 s. devouring everything I could starting with Stephen king. dean koontz. robert Mccammon. this woman Nancy Collins is quickly becoming one of my fav authors. I will start picking up her other books. if u like great story telling with a scary twist u need to read this book. Nancy Collins u have made a new fan. peace out. thomas. I would give this book 20 stars but it only goes up to 5.
Profile Image for Craig.
217 reviews
January 28, 2023
A young man's journey to find out who his real parents are leads him to the discovery of a werewolf society that he is part of.

This made me wonder if it is necessary to have a character within a book to like in order for the story to work. There isn't one character that I cared about or even remotely liked.

I didn't find this to contain any horror and was turned off because of scenes involving rape.
Profile Image for Morley Robertson.
16 reviews5 followers
January 4, 2022
Couldn't get through it

I've read every werewolf book I have been able to find over the past 20 years. I've made it through all of them except this one. I couldn't make it past "Wolfcane Lodge". This author is original, I'll say that, but probably has the funnuest idea of werewolves I've ever read.
Profile Image for Ceilidhchaos.
Author 6 books20 followers
August 22, 2019
I read this year's ago when it came out and I thought I had imagined it and when I recently found it again i was like oh yeah this was as fucked up as i remembered. High gore, cannibalism, rape and werewolf racism.
Profile Image for Donna.
Author 7 books62 followers
March 11, 2021
This was a wild ride and a great story.
Profile Image for Karissa.
3,886 reviews191 followers
December 30, 2010
I really love Nancy Collins' writing; I was excited to read one of the few books of hers that I haven't read. I loved her Sonja Blue series and even loved the books I read outside that series, for example "Angels on Fire". I have got to say though "Wild Blood" is not one of her better novels. It is an okay read but she has written much, much better stuff than is found in this book.

In this book Skinner, who starts the book as your typical college student, finds out (through a series of disasters) that he is a werewolf. Skinner ends up immersed in an uber-violent society as he tries to figure out what it means to be one of these super powerful creatures. Skinner works to find a place for himself in this new lifestyle as he struggles to maintain the morals he was raised with.

Those of you who have read Collins before know that she doesn't pull punches when it comes to violence. She is one of the few writers who can occasionally make me nauseous with the violent and perverse turns that her novels take. So, if you don't like violence (I am including both blood and guts violence, humiliating violence, and sexual violence in my violence statement) I would stay away. There is nothing beautiful about this novel, it is very, very dark..oh and did I mention violent?

The pace of the story is pretty good and actually keeps the reader very engaged. Skinner is not the most engaging or interesting character ever, but he has a uniquely down-to-earth yet tormented personality. Most of the surrounding characters are not at all likable. The book, unfortunately, is very predictable. The blood and violence, there is a ton of rape and other sexual violence in this book, was less necessary to the plot than in other books of Collins that I have read.

Surprisingly the ending to this book is rather gentle. Which is a bit odd for those of us familiar with Collins's other works; she is not one for a happy ending. Compared to the rest of the book the ending was actually very positive and sweet.

Overall it was an okay read. Nothing extraordinary. A good book to read for Halloween. For those paranormal lovers, this book definitely tends more to the horror side of things. There is definitely not a focus on romance or supernaturals as misunderstood members of society. Personally, if you want to read Nancy Collins I would start with the Sonya Blue Collection, it is much better.
6 reviews
May 29, 2020
Skinner cade anothet monstrous, Nancy A collins Character with sympathetic heroic persomality traits we can all associate with! rdespite being a were wolf through in with other momsters Namcy A Collims' Man chatacter Skinner Cade exhibits some really positive persomality traits that make him imto tne utimate hero in they

way he deals with tjhe awful hand of cards he's been dealt with! Cade has such heroic properties tne reader can empathise with him and despite.his mksadventires the reader can root form him all the way through this book and the subseqiemt short story sequels!
Profile Image for Eden Celeste.
76 reviews3 followers
February 23, 2009
This is my favorite werewolf book, and by far one of the most brutal books I have ever read. This is not for the easily bothered, and even contains some subject matter that I find shocking and disturbing, but I think that this very fact makes this book all the better. I can't say too much more without giving the book away, but I would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys horror novels.
November 21, 2017
This was a pretty good book.

I give this book 4 out of five stars only because of the native characters in the late part of the story could have been introduced earlier in order to learn more about them and their mythos
March 29, 2019
Not as good as I remember. Some atrocious dialogue. That being said it opened itself up to be a series of books what with the mythology created. Unfortunately, it wrapped the tale up in about 5 pages.
Displaying 1 - 19 of 19 reviews

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