The OF Blog: Dogs and Wolves

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Dogs and Wolves

Just a very quick post with an observation and an updated schedule of reviews. I've finished all of the volumes in Wolfe's "Solar Cycle" as well as the collection Castle of Days and have begun reading the Latro books and the 2004 collection Innocents Aboard. I hope to have a review of Urth of the New Sun ready by late today, with reviews of the Book of the Long Sun books this weekend (if I decide to review each separately; I'm undecided now).

But there's one observation I'd like to make, obvious as it is to those who are familiar with the authors' works. I have noticed that in every single Wolfe novel to date that I've this year (12 books/volumes), there is always some reference to wolves. Sometimes it's literal, othertimes it's figurative, but it's always there. Reminds me of Portuguese author José Saramago (I might write short reviews of his books next year, although I'd have to translate any juicy quotes into English from the Spanish translations I have) and his beloved dogs, which appear in so many of his novels. I cannot help but wonder if there are other authors who work in a specific animal as a reference/literal object in each of their works - anyone know of any which they can share here?


Robert said...

Just wanted to say thanks for all of the thoughtful and comprehensive analyses of Mr. Wolfe's works. Sad to say I've never read anything by the author, and it sounds like I'm really missing out. So, I hope to correct that problem at some point. I just wish I could read at the rate you do ;)

Larry said...

You're welcome :D Of course, there are bits and pieces that I've left out, some by design, others by the usual oversight. It's really easy to see how there have been quite a few dissertations and books written about this series. Sadly, not as much has been written about the Long Sun or Short Sun books, but that might be changing as well, now that the "Solar Cycle" appears to be complete.

But it's never too late to begin Wolfe. Most of his books don't go much past the 300 page mark.

Matthew said...

Speaking of Wolfe's dogs, someone has uncovered something interesting concerning Pirate Freedom on the discussion list. It's worthwhile to check out Saint Christopher on Wikipedia.

Larry said...

About the dog-headed one? My parish church is St. Christopher's and I read up about that Eastern interpretation of "dog-headed" and how it's portrayed in artwork. It is fascinating to see how legends mutate with time, to where there are zooanthropic images used in place of metaphors for those who speak foreign tongues :D

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