The Story Behind the Story of THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF


Welcome to the blog today.  I’ll be giving away a free ebook today, so please do come on in and leave a comment and enter into the discussion.  That’s all you have to do to be eligible for a free ebook.

THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF is due for release on July 22, 2014.  Now, funny thing is that no author that I know of likes to say that they like one book over another.  Usually my favorite book is the book that I’m writing at the moment.  However, THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF was one of those books that really came from my heart — there are elements in it — scouting for instance, and the incredible abilities of these scouts of old — and other elements that I find fascinating.

There is a companion book to THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF — and that book is THE PRINCESS AND THE WOLF.  This is really a continuation of that story — only now told from the viewpoint of Marietta, who was the maid in THE PRINCESS AND THE WOLF.  So it’s kind of an odd thing that THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF is second in the Lost Clan series, and yet is a companion of THE PRINCESS AND THE WOLF, which is not part of that series at all.

assiniboin-indians[1]THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF is second in the Lost Clan series, a series that has the Thunderer as the antagonist throughout the entire series.  The first book introduces the reason why the Thunderer has become so murderous toward this particular clan — and the struggle of a single boy, who must go out into the world — all on his own — and attempt to undo the curse.

In my mind’s eyes, the picture off to the left is the picture of my hero — this is one of most favorite of all the paintings of Karl Bodmer, a man who toured the West with  Prince Maximilian zu Wied-Neuwied in the early 1800’s.  Karl Bodmer, as well as George Catlin, documented in paintings the early days of the West when the Indians were first meeting the white man.

It was THE PRINCESS AND THE WOLF that first introduced me to the realm of the Indian scout, and I was at once fascinated.  This book continues in that same manner, by introducing the reader to the incredible abilities of the old scout, as well as carrying on the antagonistic relationship of the hero with the Thunderer.  Interestingly at the time of writing this story, my husband was very much into reading the HARRY POTTER series and was fascinated with some of the riddles that Harry had to unravel.

Because of this influence from my husband, I became interested in the subject matter of riddles, and thus begins the problems that our hero faces in this book, which involves the solving of a deceptively “simple” riddle.  As a note, that riddle in the book came from brain-storming with my husband, who really was instrumental in putting that riddle together.

TepeesRockies[1]But there was another part to this book that I absolutely love, and that part is gambling.  Yes, that’s right…gambling.  I love pow-wows (the picture off to the left here was taken at the Blackfeet Days pow-wow).  It was at this pow-wow that I learned how fun and how popular gambling is/was to the American Indian.  Add to that my fascination when I learned that Sacagawea had been “won” by her husband in a game of chance.  Wow!  What sort of game was this?  that would come with a wife as part of the stakes?

That game was, I soon discovered, the game of Cos-soo, an Indian game of chance where the loser generally lost everything, even to his clothes, his possessions including his tepee, and…his wife.  Often these games were played for days and days without interruption.

The hero of this story, Grey Coyote, is desperate.  He has only until his 30th birthday to solve the mystery of this riddle or lose his chance of freeing his people forever.  He is twenty-nine years of age, with his birthday just around the corner.  Add to that his frustration that he is “saddled” with a possession won that could cause him to abandon precious time spent in trying to undo the curse that plagues his people.  The heroine, Marietta, is shocked, scared and finally frustrated when she learns she has a “husband,” who might delay her need to hurry home to England, in order to claim her estate.

AIPTEKBut I’ve left out the most important part of the inspiration for this story — my husband, his sense of honor, his sense of humor, and the way he makes me feel when he kisses me.

This picture off to the left is a recent picture, taken in Arizona, I believe, as we were traveling across country earlier this year.

And as a note, THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF, is on sale for a very, very low price right now — the book won’t be released until July 22, 2014, but for a short time, it’s available for order at the wonderful price of $3.85.  Here’s the link:

If you go to that link, please be sure to read the excerpt printed there — it’s the game of Cos-soo that opens the story.

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed the blog today.  Do leave me a comment, and enter into the drawing for a free ebook.


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KAREN KAY aka GEN BAILEY is the multi-published author of American Indian Historical Romances. She has written for such prestigious publishers as AVON/HarperCollins, Berkley/Penguin/Putnam and Samhain Publishing. KAREN KAY’S great grandmother was Choctaw Indian and Kay is honored to be able to write about the American Indian Culture.
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34 thoughts on “The Story Behind the Story of THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF”

  1. I read the novel Sacagawea. Very informative and interesting. I didn’t like her fur trader husband.

    Love your stories and the inspiration behind them.

  2. As always, I find your blogs so educational! I love reading them as well as your books. Have to have them!

  3. I always enjoy your fascinating posts, Kay! I love how you describe THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF as one of those books that really came from your heart. I know it is a wonderful story!

  4. Hi Margaret!

    Thank you so much for the compliment — especially on hubby and me. Can’t even begin to say how much that man means to me — even the word love seems whimpy compared to the affection and admiration I have for him. : )

  5. Kay, You always have such interesting posts and I so enjoy reading them. Thank you for what you do and your giveaway.

  6. Am new to pistols and petticoats. Enjoyed reading about you and your husband and the interest in history. If you go to the website I listed you will find common interests. My entire life is like living a history lesson and loving it. I even have NOTHING but wood to cook on and heat my house and I do have to cut my own firewood. Have advanced enough to have a wringer washer however! Anyway, I spent over two years doing research by reading and visiting historical forts and developed a game called HAWKEN Mountain Man board game. I think you would enjoy it and I would very much like to send you one. Reading previous remarks it seems you have been so generous in sharing your books I would like to share with you. If you accept my gift please tell me where I might send it to.

  7. Karen, you always have a wonderful post. They are so fascinating and enjoyable. I love your books! They take me back to a place and time where life was a constant adventure!

  8. I knew the native peoples gambled, and that some games continued for a long time. But I was not familiar with the game of Cos-soo. I have seen the dice sticks in the games of chance, but know none of the games.
    The french fur trappers were some of the first white men to venture into the north central and northwest portion of the country. Their experiences with the peoples of the region and their knowledge of the area made them the perfect choice for scouts when the population turned to the West.

  9. Hi Karen. As I’ve said before I love Indian books. I want in on a chance to win this one, tho sure wish was a print. I have read about that game and women being won by others. How awful unless you were treated bad by your husband. Then you might be glad. LOL Please put my name in the hat. Thanks for a chance to win. Maxie > mac262(at)me(dot)com <

  10. Karen Kay I love reading Indian books. I just found your website and was thrilled there was someone writing about that gender. I have not read an Indian romance since Cassie Edwards stopped. Oh! how I would love the chance to read your book. Blessings to you and to all. And great article you wrote.

  11. Hi Claudette!

    Oh my gosh. What an incredible comment to receive. We do share the interest in history, although I must admit that my has come about simply because I’ve HAD to do it to write what I write — somewhere along the line history became fun. I’m sure you can relate.

    I would love to receive your board game — sounds fascinating — but please I would like to give you something for it — perhaps we could exchange a board game for a book or something like that?

    Do let me know. If you go to my website you can email me there directly. : )

  12. Hi Patricia!

    Fascinating post. I so love this sort of thing. Yes, the game of Cos-soo was a game played for keeps on the Western plains. I forget now what book it was that provided the research for how it was played. This book, THE SPIRIT OF THE WOLF, does go into the rules of the game, which were fascinating in itself. I really did find this all exciting, I must admit.

  13. Hi Maxie!

    You know, the story goes that the wives of the Indian man who gambled Sacagawea away were very, very upset with him. What happened because of that, I don’t know.

    Please do keep coming to the blogs, Maxie. I do generally give away books. Not always. But I do love to do it. So please keep checking back.

  14. Hi Lyn!

    I’m so glad that you have connected with me. I love Cassie. I haven’t heard from her in ages, but when she fell, it was a disaster — and I know personally that much of what was done and said were lies — I have this direct from Cassie. But sometimes, people, even when it’s known it’s lies, just don’t want the hassle and it appears that this is what happened with Cassie.

    You remind me that I should try to get in contact with her again. : )

    Thanks so much for coming to the blog — generally I give books away when I blog — not always — but enough that it’s worth while to check. : ) So please do come back.

  15. Hi Linda Marie!

    Please do keep coming back to the blog. I, and the other fillies, often give away books — and for me, it’s something that I try to do as often as I can. So please do keep checking back.

  16. Hi Karen,

    Thanks for the mini history lesson. I was never a fan of history in school, but I can’t seem to get enough of inspirational historical books, and I’ve never read one based on Indian culture. This is so exciting! As a teenager, our school would go to Pow Wow’s on field trips, but they just sold jewelry to help raise money for their reservation, so you can well imagine my enthusiasm to read your book. Thank you and your husband for taking on this endeavor.

    In His care,
    Carolyn Benton

  17. Interesting story. I never knew that the Indians gambled like that. Like your hubby’s stache.

  18. Hi Carolyn!

    Thank you so much. I must warn you, however, that the romances I write are not considered inspirational — they do contain kissing and petting and sex scenes. Just wanted to make sure you knew. : ) Thanks for the comment.

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