Poor Kitty Norville. Everyone always laughs at the werewolf named Kitty, even though, as she points out, she had the name first.
I’ve read every single one of Carrie Vaughn’s urban fantasy series staring a werewolf named Kitty. So, of course, just like Mary Robinette’s Glamourist Histories and John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War, Carrie’s books ended last year.
The best one is book four. It packs a hell of a punch.
Carrie is an extremely smart writer. The urban fantasy books have all the good traits of commercial books–they’re fun, engaging, and easy to read. However, the book also rewards closer attention, with intelligent character development and interaction with genre tropes. (Her short stories are often even more vividly engaging on that level.)
Kitty is an upbeat, optimistic character in a loving relationship with her husband. Carrie says she wanted to prove that happy characters could be the protagonists of interesting stories. The series has a number of unconventional points. Kitty married the “beta” lawyer, whom she chose over the “alpha” assassin. Unlike many urban fantasy heroes, Kitty doesn’t embark on her journey as a bad-ass; instead, she has to take the journey from pack omega to pack alpha, and from victim to defender.
Instead of talking more about that, I’m just going to show off my silly pictures.
I started out wanting to make a scary Kitty Werewolf. I’m sure there’s a graphic somewhere out there on the wide internet, but I wanted to try my own version first. I really like the sketch I came up with (below, left), but I haven’t found a way to finish it that works for me. For instance, in the colored version (below, right), you can see that the feline werewolf has apparently become a floundering stand-up comedian. “Eh? Eh? Get it?”
So, I was forced to admit defeat. And really, since Kitty is such a kind-hearted, optimistic character, I thought I should try a different approach.
“On the full moon, I turn into a house cat.”
“Is that a problem?”
“Well, I have pretty bad allergies…”
Thanks, Carrie, for the great books. I’ll miss ’em.