I first heard about The Wolfmanin the summer of 2008. I found the story of the author’s death before it’s publication sad and was a little intrigued by the story, but not enough to pick it up at the time. When it finally came out in paperback, I decided to bite the bullet and buy it.
The Wolfman is the story of Marlowe Higgins, a Vietnam veteran who should have died during the war. But thanks to his unknown family heritage, and his father’s sudden death, he was sent home alive but thought to be mentally unstable. The reality of his situation soon comes home to him when his mother finally tells him the secret his father never did. The men of his family are cursed to become a wolfman on the nights of the full moon. Marlowe spends years struggling with his killer beast until he finally figures out how to work with him. The result turns him into a full moon vigilante, sending the wolfman after criminals who get away with their crimes.
When the Rose Killer comes to the sleepy little town Marlowe has finally made a home in, he sends the wolfman after him. But instead of killing his intended target, the wolfman kills Marlowe’s only real friend, Detective Daniel Pearce, who was on a stakeout the night of the full moon, looking for the killer himself. Wracked with guilt, Marlowe now has to find out why Pearce was killed instead of the Rose Killer and then find his original intended target.
Reading The Wolfman, I can understand what his editor saw in Pekearo’s work and why he had such high hopes for him in the future. It does read like the first novel it was, but it also paved the ground for future Marlowe Higgins stories and I would have loved to have gotten to read them.