Werewolves in The Dresden Files
While reading Jim Butcher’s Fool Moon, the second book in The Dresden Files, I came across something I had never read in any other book before, something that made me all kinds of happy. This book, which follows a crime-solving wizard, contains multiple types of werewolves. Every other book I have read had one type of werewolf and one only, but this series has them all. The different types depend on how someone transforms into wolf and how much of their humanity they retain, check them out:
Werewolves: This is a human who uses their own magic to shift into a wolf. The ability to transform is pretty much their only spell. These werewolves aren’t actually very good at being wolves because they retain all of their humanity. These guys only change the shape of their body, they still retain their human mind. They can still think and reason, their personality doesn’t change – they are a human in a wolf’s body. That means they don’t have a wolf’s instincts or reflexes. Werewolves have to learn how to be like a wolf, just because they have the body of one doesn’t mean they know how to use it.
There is also another version of this werewolf, it’s when someone else uses magic to turn someone into a wolf. In the world of The Dresden Files it’s illegal for a wizard to do this, for transforming another person into an animal tends to wipe their mind and eventually they are nothing but an animal that can’t go back to human.
Hexenwolves: A hexenwolf is someone who makes a deal with a demon or a powerful sorcerer. They get a wolf-belt (sometimes a ring or amulet), put it on, say the magic words and they turn into a wolf. The enchanted item acts as an anchor to a spirit of bestial rage. The spirit wraps itself around the human’s personality, it leaves them with their intellect and reason, but it handles everything else. When you use the talisman, you lose all human inhibitions and the nasty spirit has control. Hexenwolves are big bad wolves with human-level intelligence and animal-level ferocity.
Lycanthropes: A lycanthrope is a natural channel for a spirit of rage. They turn into a beast, but only in their head. The spirit takes over, it affects how the person acts and thinks, makes them more aggressive, stronger. They deal well with pain and injury and heal rapidly. They don’t actually shift into a wolf, but they have the fierceness of one. Also, lycanthropes are born, not made like the others.
Loup-garou:These are the real big monsters. Loup-garou are people who have been cursed to become a wolf-like demon. During the full moon they transform into a monstrous wolf and go on a killing spree, killing everything in their path until the moon sets or the sun rises. They have supernatural speed and power, their wounds heal almost instantly, they’re immune to poison and any kind of magic that targets their brain. Only a silver weapon can hurt one of these guys, but the silver has to have been inherited from a family member.
There you have it, the various types of “werewolves” in The Dresden Files. The book makes it very clear that biting has nothing to with becoming a werewolf, to transform you need magic.
I love that the books have these different types, it makes it so much more interesting, plus it makes everyone happy since some people prefer gentler werewolves while others love the ferocious and deadly kind.
I highly suggest checking this series out! As I mentioned above, it follows Harry Dresden, a wizard and detective who helps the police solve crimes. The series contains all sorts of magical beasties, like vampires, fairies, demons, werewolves…etc. Werewolves don’t show up until Fool Moon, the second book. The first book in the series is Storm Front.
What do you think about have so many types of werewolves in one series? Have any of you read the books, if so, what did you think?
About the Author
Moonlight loves to write about, read about and learn about everything pertaining to werewolves and other supernatural beasties. She writes for top genre sites like Vampires.com and Werewolves.com. You will most likely find her huddled over a book of folklore with coffee in hand. Touch her coffee and you may lose a limb. You can stalk her via her Twitter.
One of the writers for werewolves.com, as well as vampires.com.