Thirteen definitely seems like something I should put on my wishlist! :-)
I really enjoyed A Companion to Wolves, also. I agree, the names got a bit confusing--thank god there was a cast list up front! :-) I thought that the whole book was a pretty gritty (and subtle) rebuttal to all rainbow and kittens-ification of the animal companion genre.
Re. the no female wolfcarls...I know that it wasn't explicitly mentioned, but I got the feeling that the problem was really related to occupation (the fact that the wolfcarls were warriors) and the possibility of pregnancy. If the wolf enclaves were mixed sex, they'd run the risk of having pregnant female fighters. And having an all female fighting force wouldn't be practical. So, what you're kind of left with is an all male enclave/fighting force which is presumably how things were before they figured out how to bond with the wolves. Just a guess.
Hope you enjoy it! It's one of those books where I can imagine the sex and the violence putting a lot of people off, but I saw them as valid storytelling choices. If you can deal with the prologue, I think the rest of the story will work for you.
Re. the no female wolfcarls...I know that it wasn't explicitly mentioned,
Your explanation may well be right. I was just surprised because most of the other gender roles in the book are explicitly mentioned and explore. And most societies that are male-dominated have always had some sort of explanation as to why women can't participate in [insert activity here]. I was watching for that explanation and how it applied to trellwolves, and I didn't see it. I do think it's a plothole.
It's one of those books where I can imagine the sex and the violence putting a lot of people off,
I confess, I *love* carnage, so no worries there! ;-)
I was watching for that explanation and how it applied to trellwolves, and I didn't see it. I do think it's a plothole.
I totally agree. It did seem surprising that there weren't any female fighters at all (at least, if there were any, I missed them amidst the metric shit load of minor characters! :-). There didn't seem to be any explicit social prohibition against it...it would be nice if the authors addressed it in a sequel (which they're apparently thinking about, after their other current projects are completed).
I did really like the way that the troll genocide *wasn't* swept under the rug; and I thought that Isolfr's plans for his daughter were interesting both from a gender standpoint (as his reaction to his observations about the female smith) and also from a political standpoint as well. Good stuff. My main complaint with the book was that it was too short!