Hot enough for you? Wolf at the door . . . Born a wolf, Maeniel learns the fullness of humanity in Alice Borchardt's stirring, sensual fantasy Night of the Wolf. The seduction of Maeniel's human side begins in the wild mountains of Gaul, where he takes his human love, Imona. But the intrusion of human fears of the wolf forces Imona to leave him behind. Her sacrificial death brings the Amazon warrior Dryas to teach Maeniel the next truths about human nature. Hired to kill the wolf, Dryas entraps him in shackles instead. While Maeniel is learning to survive as a human, the man, Lucius, born human, is learning his own survival skills. His sister Fulvia's lust for power puts Lucius at constant risk. Recover-ing from battle injuries, he relies on the Greek physician Philo for medical care and counsel. As Maeniel gains greater control over his human side, he ultimately travels to Rome. There Maeniel's journey culminates, where Lucius and Fulvia each plot their own intrigues to survive in the tempestuous age.

Borchardt intertwines the mysticism of the shape-changer with the violent political conspiracies of Julius Caesar's Rome in this singular masterpiece sure to keep you absorbed in a faraway time and place that is a fascinating foundation of our own history. (Even if you didn't know that Alice Borchardt got the perfect start on unforgettable storytelling by composing childhood tales with her sister, Anne Rice.) Sandy Huseby writes from North Dakota and Minnesota.

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