In the Mouth of the Wolf
People in desperate search of love and oblivion...
In the Mouth of the Wolf has a layered set of characters, each with his or her own personal questions, whom confront their past as it bears on their present behavior if they are to survive. Three men in the novel have varying degrees of war trauma. Their wives display different ways of absorbing the war experience upon the men's arrival home. The book principally encompasses the impact on marital relationships and other human connections when soldiers return from war.
The story has its roots in the Vietnam War, but unlike the old stories that have already been told about Vietnam, this tale embraces homecoming for the main character, Memo Muir. A few scenes in Vietnam demonstrate the brutality that the war has on Memo's mind.
Two of Memo's wartime buddies deal with their homecoming in different ways. Jack, a trauma surgeoen in the war, was severely affected by his experience, though shows a significant amount of resilience. However, Chet completely shuts down and expresses his concerns and emotions by self-medicating with sundry drugs; thus, further slanting his perceptions that have been mis-shapen by his war experience, leading to dire consequences.
In the Mouth of the Wolf comes from a Spanish saying, which means, "you don't have a chance," an apt metaphor for the characters' struggles. Memo and his wife seperate because of Memo's war trauma, despite the deep love that imbues their souls. By the end of the book there are transformative experiences that bring about a surprise rapproachment between them.
What Others Are Saying
“Bill McCausland deftly weaves a complex and compelling story that shows the long-lasting effects of war. Beautifully written, In the Mouth of the Wolf is a pleasure to experience and will make all readers look at human conflicts in a new way.”
Ann Howard Creel, Award-winning author of nine novels, seven for young adults and two for adults
“In the Mouth of the Wolf explores the collateral damage of war inflicted upon soldiers, and their loved ones, after returning home from Vietnam. Heartbraking, riveting, astonishing, and beautifully rendered, this story is a major stoke. McCausland is a Big Wave story teller. He masterfully evokes the battles that engulf Memo and his Vietnam vet buddies and their families after returning home from the war. With compassion, voice, pace, and riveting tension, McCausland takes us on an unflinching, powerful journey of discovery, healing, and redemption. His book deserves a place on your bookshelf, right between For Whom The Bell Tolls and The Things They Carried. McCausland is the real deal.”
Guy Biederman, Playwright, actor, creative writing professor, and author of House Samurai
“In the Mouth of the Wolf is an honest, provocative and complex narrative full of adventures along the California coast and road trips to Laguna Salada and Santo Tomás in Mexico. Through an astute understanding of his own emotional terrain, Memo makes sense of his odyssey. From the depths of war's aftermath, and a compelling love affair, he discovers within himself the ability to navigate life's dangerous opportunities.”
Jeanmarie Morell, Magazine and newspaper writer