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WEREling    by Steve Feasey order for
by Steve Feasey
Order:  USA  Can
Feiwel & Friends, 2010 (2010)
Paperback, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Ricki Marking-Camuto

Vampires might still be the main supernatural creatures to grace YA fiction, but werewolves are close behind. Following in this trend is WEREling by Steve Feasey, a paranormal novel aimed more at boys than the typical genre following of girls.

Orphaned since his parents died in a car accident, Trey Laporte has never had any visitors at the Apple Grove Care Home until a mysterious man shows up claiming to be his uncle. Trey is none too sure of this man named Lucien, but decides to go home with him anyway, especially since Lucien arrived when Trey was about to be punished for his room's destruction the night before. Trey knows Lucien is not his uncle but he does believe the man when he says he knew his parents.

However, Trey begins to have second thoughts about his decision once they reach Lucien's home and he realizes that Lucien is a vampire. That is horrible enough, but Trey has an even more difficult time dealing with what Lucien tells the boy he is: the last natural werewolf. Now Trey must learn how to control his powers before Lucien's brother Caliban finds him and kills him ... just like he murdered Trey's parents.

There is a lot of horror and dark fantasy out there for the YA market. In order to compete, a novel has to really stand out as something special. While WEREling does have good aspects, there is nothing to separate it from the pack. The biggest problem is that it starts off rather slowly. By the title, the reader knows immediately what happened to Trey in the first scene, but it takes him a while to realize it for himself. And it also takes him a while to come to terms with what he is, which is understandable but does not make for fast-paced reading.

Trey spends the majority of the novel learning to deal with this new paranormal world into which he is thrust, making it feel more character-driven than action-driven, which is what most supernatural novels are. But while WEREling is a slower read than fans of the genre might expect, it is well-written and portrays believable teen emotions. This is just the first book in a new series, so hopefully Steve Feasey will pick up the pace in subsequent episodes, now that we have thoroughly gotten to know Trey Laporte.

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