I imagine Jeff Strand’s elevator pitch for Wolf Hunt being along the lines of ‘The Sopranos Meet The Wolfman.’ If this intrigues you, then it’s really about all that needs to be said of Strand’s funny, bloody werewolf romp. Frankly, it’s all I would have needed to be hooked straightaway. If this does not intrigue you, then I’m afraid I can’t help you.
George and Lou are not exactly made guys, and deny even being mobsters at all, but they are clearly some well-connected thugs who have little problem breaking thumbs over debts owed to their bosses. They’re tasked with transporting a bad dude named Ivan across Florida to a crime lord, with Ivan locked in a cage. Strand sets up his story in a fun way, with a lot of dispute over Ivan’s credentials as a werewolf and plenty of is-he or isn’t-he back and forth (George and Lou aren’t buying it, and Ivan has fun stringing them along). Things quickly go south, and after saving and accidentally kidnapping Michelle, the thugs are in a race to stop Ivan before he can wreak all kinds of carnage across the Sunshine State.
Strand does a beautiful job balancing wit with werewolf violence, and one early scene in particular stands out as being a gruesomely effective showcase to Ivan’s psychopathy, while also solidifying the bloody courtship between he and George. Although Wolf Hunt has a number of gory instances, there’s a certain lightness to the work as a whole thanks to a lot of humorous banter and a handful of characters that are actually fun to spend seven hours with.
Besides Stand’s quirkiness, a lot of this fun is owed to narrator Scott Thomas, who seems to be enjoying himself quite a bit and effortlessly brings the material to life. He provides each character with a distinct voice and speech pattern, which makes it easy to discern who is saying what during stretches of dialogue, and keeps the listen fresh throughout. Thomas hits all the right notes and delivers an excellent performance. The production values are fine, too, and Thomas’ work comes through without a hitch.
If you’re looking for a genuinely fun and comedic horror listen, Wolf Hunt definitely stands out from the pack.
[Audiobook provided for review by the audiobookreviewer.com]