TV Tie-In Book Review: On Fire: A Teen Wolf Novel

On Fire: A Teen Wolf Novel by Nancy Holder

Scott McCall is no longer a normal teen. After getting bitten by a werewolf, Scott now has to control his inner wolf whenever his emotions run high. Scott’s relationship with Allison has just begun, but her family hunts Scott’s kind. So, keeping his secret is crucial. Recently, Jackson, the popular rich kid and Captain of the lacrosse team, skipped school and seems to be missing. With only a cryptic note and the ability to trace his cell phone from an app, his friends search for him. Jackson’s phone trail leads them to the woods late at night. Not only do they need to find Jackson, but Scott needs to make sure he and Allison avoid the mysterious Alpha werewolf who turned him. Or Allison may be the one in danger.

On Fire is a tie-in novel based on the new hit show Teen Wolf from MTV, apparently set about early to middle of the first season. MTV’s Teen Wolf is only loosely based on the beloved, original movie of the same name starring Michael J. Fox. This Teen Wolf is much darker, less comedic and blends mild horror, mystery, drama, and romance.

I wondered how a tie-in novel would work with such a fast-paced show, where a lot progresses over the course of just a 12-episode season. But On Fire works well as a mid-season story where there is a lot of mystery that has yet to be revealed. And fans are treated to a riveting backstory of Derek, the brooding werewolf who mentors Scott, but wants vengeance for his family more than anything. Jackson’s mystery is incredibly suspenseful, but unfortunately ended a bit too abruptly without much explanation. I would love to see this series continue in novels and see it either continue this storyline or jump forward to the present storyline. These are fantastic characters; and Holder does a great job of weaving a new mystery and remaining true to the characters.

On Fire will release from MTV Books on July 17, 2012.