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Reviewed by Rosie Malezer for Readers' Favorite
Tales from P.A.W.S. is a book of short stories written by Debbie Manber Kupfer. Alistair is an aged, yet youthful-looking werewolf who has taken new werewolf, Josh, under his wing. One night, he tells Josh of his cruel, homicidal father who had killed Alistair’s mother and siblings (as he watched) for fun. During Alistair’s first full moon, so many years ago, he’d needed to seal his fate with a worthy kill, which he had eagerly done with pride. Morgana is a fairy who offers riches and immortality to Ramora, a child bride of twelve who is to wed a man in his late thirties. Awaiting the arrival of the fairy atop Manus Wu, Ramora fears a potential betrayal by Morgana. In the blink of an eye, Ramora seals her fate. Griddlebone is the result of experimentation by the Gestapo on Jewish prisoners in Vienna during wartime, combining their DNA with that of felines in order to create the perfect killing machine. As Griddlebone witnesses Jewish prisoners being forced onto the back of a truck by Nazi soldiers, other hidden werecats pounce and systematically tear apart some of the Nazis captors. Those who survive quickly flee on the truck with the prisoners. One prisoner, Esther, is saved. On her transformation, Esther and Griddlebone pay a visit to one of the concentration camps to see if the guards want to come out to play.
This is the first paranormal horror which I have ever read. Debbie Manber Kupfer’s imagination is clearly not in short supply, with each of these tales easily visualized in every detail. Tales from P.A.W.S. deals with the macabre, but also brings a tale of justice, which is clearly best when dished out raw with a side of human blood. I found myself cheering for Alistair, feeling sorrow for Ramora, before praying for a happy ending for Griddlebone and Esther. With such a whirlwind of emotions, I would have to recommend this book for those who enjoy their reading on the gory side, with a touch of supernatural in the mix.