War of the Animals
War of the Animals
(Book 1): The Shut Face Of Thunder
by Jonathan Decoteau
GENRE: Sci-fi Fantasy
Mankind struck first. This time, nature fights back...
A failed effort to weaponize animals awakens their intellects. The military responds by creating death camps to exterminate infected animals. Moon Shadow, an Arctic white wolf, unites with White Claw, a polar bear king, to form Animus Nor, the first animal republic, to negotiate peace. The uneasy peace is broken with the rise of Azaz, lord of the grizzly bears. Azaz attacks human settlements, considering humans an invasive species that wreaks havoc on bears and the environment. A world war breaks out as animals face humans and each other to see who will rule the world.
Read an Excerpt:
(The War of The Animals series asks: What if animals rose up against humanity’s pollution of the environment and destruction of their habitats? What if it was a fair fight? This excerpt is from the seventh chapter and introduces Azaz, king of the grizzly bears, the antagonist of the book.)
In the great peaks of the upper Rockies sat a bastion among the rocks, a huge, Stonehenge-like structure of monoliths with pillars reaching up, like fangs, to the crude facial approximations of the bear god, Azaz. Along the cave, mounted in giant sticks, were the half-gnawed bodies of any rulku unfortunate enough to cross his militia of bears. The grizzlies themselves, greater in number than the clouds that hovered above, each reclined among the vast network of caves. They ate of man’s flesh by circling fires as they partook in one prolonged growl that embodied epic stories of conquest.
“I smell you before I see you,” Azaz called out, ending the revelry. “Speak or perish.”
Gingerly, Moon Shadow skulked along, led by the giant grizzly bear commander Vronkyl. Moon Shadow lowered her head in submission to Azaz, the grand master of the mountains. Behind her were the white wolves of the North and a garrison of polar bears led by White Claw himself. Over her head cried Thunder Killer, shrieking to announce the presence of Moon Shadow and company, and Sky Death, who circled quietly.
“I am the one they call Moon Shadow,” the great white wolf announced, “and I have come to parley over the problem of the rulku.”
“If it isn’t the fabled Great Army of the North,” Azaz said.
The self-proclaimed bear god stood up. On his hind legs, at full height, Azaz easily surpassed any of the polar bears. His back legs were trunks that resembled earthy oak trunks, and his stomach and chest had something of the color of the great redwoods. Azaz’s teeth were jagged and bloody with kills. His body was a sea of interconnected scars from years of predation. Only his eyes had a touch of majesty about them, a softness to the purple-red light that haunted the pupils of the evolved. But even that light hardened upon the sight of the celebration of polar bears. On this rock, Azaz reigned supreme.
About the Author:
I am a nature lover who lives and teaches in beautiful, pastoral New England.
The War of the Animals books were inspired by the 2020 pandemic lockdown. I remember driving by animals that freely roamed the streets after we were in lockdown (I was getting groceries—not ignoring state mandates—I promise!). I felt for the first time how much the animals were in lockdown whenever we weren’t. That inspired the idea of a variety of animals having voices and speaking up for the earth. I started writing the books shortly thereafter.
My website (with character profiles and links to other work) can be found at waroftheanimals.com.
The eBook can be downloaded for free at most major online retailers, including at the following links:
Jonathan Decoteau will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
a Rafflecopter giveaway