Literature / Wereworld

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For the webcomic by Rann, see Wereworld.

Wereworld is a series of fantasy novels by Curtis Jobling and published by Puffin Books UK.The official website can be found here.

In a kingdom torn apart by tyranny, one boy must take control of the powerful lycanthropy surging within him and lead a nation. But in a world filled with enemy were-creatures, does he have what it takes to become a hero?

It started the night the beast appeared...Drew is an ordinary shepherd’s son living on the cold Coast of Lyssia, until a horrifying creature bursts into his home and savagely murders his mother – and Drew transforms into a beast himself. Part boy, part wolf, and bristling with powers he can’t control, Drew flees to the perilous Dyrewood to escape his vengeful father, who thinks Drew is the murderer. But when he’s discovered and taken captive by Werelords, the shape-shifters who rule Lyssia, Drew is shocked to discover that he’s one of them, and that his royal blood is a threat to the crown of King Leopold the Lion. Now Drew is Lyssia’s most-wanted man and its only hope against the evil plans of the tyrant king.

This is basically the premise of the first book of the series Rise of the Wolf. It was generally well-received by critics in the UK with some claiming it to be as good if not better than Eragon.


This work contains examples of:

  • A Load of Bull: There's Duke Brand the Werebull and the werebuffalos Stamm and Baron Overmeir.
  • Achilles' Heel: Werelords can heal from any injury that isn't inflicted by silver. Silver restraints will also withstand a Werelord's transformation, which means a restraint around one's neck or wrist will just strangle or pop you body apart if you transform while wearing them. Drew, however, does manage to transform once with a restraint around his wrist, but ironically, this is when he needed to lose his hand. It comes as no surprise that Wergar outlawed the metal, although the Lionguard still has access to it.
  • Action Girl: Gretchen and Whitley.
  • Affably Evil: Count Vega.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Drew loses his left hand in Book 2 after losing his left little finger in Book 1.
  • The Atoner: Duke Bergan blames himself for the Old King Wergar's death.
  • Badass in Distress: Drew.
  • Bald Woman: Lady Opal.
  • Bedsheet Ladder: Carver and Pick use one to escape from Hector.
  • Betty and Veronica: Gretchen (Veronica) and Whitley (Betty). Drew develops feelings for Gretchen but doesn't get the chance to tell her. Nest of Serpents' ending implies that he chooses Whitley.
  • Big Bad: King Leopold. Later, his son Lucas and the other Catlords.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Whitley's death.
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: Gretchen is first introduced as this.
  • Cannibal Tribe: The Wyldermen live in tribes throughout the Dyrewood, and all are known to be cannibalistic.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Drew suffers from a mild case.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Happens to Drew when he is taken by Lucas and Vankasken.
  • Combat by Champion: Lord Onyx is fond of fighting strong opponents in one-on-one fights. In the fifth book he fights against Duke Henrik, but while Onyx is defeated, Lucas kills Henrik before he can finish him, something that angers Onyx greatly. In the final book there's a three-way combat between Drew, Onyx and Ulik the Naked Ape (originally Lucas was going to fight, but he murdered his grandfather and escaped, forcing the ape to participate). Drew kills Onyx but spares Ulik's life.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Drew throws sand into Duke Manfred's face while training at the start of Book 2 and gets chastised for it. However, this doesn't stop him throwing hot coal into Djogo's face later, among other things.
  • Cool Sword: The Wolf'sHead Blade isn't made of silver, but is still insanely sharp and gleams in moonlight. And engulfs itself in pure white flames during a full moon.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Drew considers his Lycantropy to be this.
  • Damsel in Distress: Gretchen. Though she does put up a fight, it is up to Drew and Hector to save her butt. Fortunately she starts becoming less of one.
  • Deadly Decadent Court: What we see of Leopold's allies in court seems to fit the bill. Their actions at a banquet in the first book are not described charitably.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Gretchen.
  • The Dragon: Vankaskan and his brothers.
  • Drop the Hammer: The Behemoth's weapon of choice is a massive hammer.
  • Drunk on the Dark Side: Vankaskan is implied to be this, but Hector is definitely this.
  • Elite Mooks: The Lionguard, especially the Bastians, who are considered far more experienced and combat ready than their Lyssian counterparts.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Onyx may be a Blood Knight, but even he found the slaughter caused by Lucas's Wyld Wolves to be disgusting.
  • Everyone Is Related:
    • Justified in that the characters' families have strategically married one another to avoid weakening lines due to incest (Gretchen's mother died in childbirth due to this). However...
    • It is also zig-zagged in that some characters are not blood related, but are related via surrogates. Gretchen and Hector see each other as cousins, most notably.
  • Evil Albino: Lord Frost the Werepanther.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: The Wereworld has humans as well as shape shifters called werelords who can each turn into a different animal.
  • Eye Scream: A few characters get blinded in one eye. Djogo loses an eye after Drew throws hot coal into his face and Vala loses an eye to Gretchen.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Hector, after becoming Drunk on the Dark Side.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Several considering that this book is supposed to be for Teens/Young Adults.
  • Fantastic Racism: Surprisingly there's not much racism between humans and Werelords, but on the other hand Bastian Werelords see themselves as superior to the Lyssian Therianthropes. Only High Lord Oba sees humans as nothing more than slaves. Vala sees humans and mammalian werelords as nothing but food. Also, just about everyone hates the rats.
  • Fate Worse Than Death: The Hawklords were banned from transforming for supporting Wergar even after his death. They also had their homeland handed over to the Crows. Gryffin having his wings torn off may also count.
    • Yes, he was a monster in life, but Vankaskan having his spirit cannibalized by Vincent and having his knowledge/ magic drained by Hector must not have been a pleasant experience.
  • Faux Action Girl: Whitley, though in the second book she does Take a Level in Badass.
  • Fingore: Drew loses the little finger on his left hand to Vanmorten in Book 1. Trent accidentally cuts off his left hand's little and ring fingers in Book 4.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: The gladiators of Scoria.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: While not truly a giant, there's Hacket the werecrab.
  • Good Is Not Nice: This is something Drew is unable to understand: he always tries to look for a peaceful outcome, even if being underhanded is the easier/ better option.
  • Groin Attack: Becomes a running gag throughout the series, mostly with either Drew using one on the Ratlords or vice versa.
  • Handicapped Badass: Drew, after having to bite his own hand off.
  • Heavy Hippo: General Gorgo the werehippo.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Count Vega sells out Wergar, but when Leopold refuses to give his realm back he sides with Drew.
  • The Hero: Drew Ferran.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Mack Ferran and some of the old Wolfguard when they stop Drew's execution.
  • High Fantasy: Werecreatures, Damsels in distress, Magic, Necromancy, Tyrannical rulers... You get the picture.
  • Honorable Elephant: The Behemoth, the weremammoth.
  • Hook Hand: Drew has his hand replaced with a trident blade after losing it. After the blade is rendered useless, he temporarily replaces it with a shield, before leaving the stump bare. In book six it is replaced with the White Fist of Icegarden.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Red Rufus admits to killing Count Croke in Nest of Shadows in order to turn the Rats and Crows against one another. Although this saves the day, Drew still has a moral quandary about it.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Count Vega. Sure, the first thing he does is kidnap Drew and co., but he adopted Casper and looks after Hector in later books.
  • Killer Gorilla: The wereapes.
  • Last of His Kind: Drew is the last Grey Werewolf. After Queen Amelie's death Mikotaj and Miloqi become the last White Werewolves.
  • Loveable Rogue: Count Vega can easily give any Hollywood pirate a run for his money.
  • The Medic: Hector.
  • Memetic Mutation: Occurs In Universe: Drew can cause nearly every broken peasant and reluctant werelord to Take a Level in Badass.
  • Morality Pet: Casper is implied to be this to Count Vega, as the former was adopted by the latter after being orphaned (although Vega may have been behind this). Turns out Casper is Vega's son.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: Why Bergan and the other Werelords don't rebel; the Lionguard would just massacre their people.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: How Hector originally feels about serving Vankaskan.
  • Necromancer: The Rat King, later Hector.
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: Averted with Drake the werecrocodile, who's only dangerous to his enemies.
  • Noble Bird of Prey: The Werehawks.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Vanmorten dishes one out to Drew at the end of book one when Drew is too exhausted to change into a wolf.
  • Off with His Head!: Wergar's fate. Also one of the few ways to kill a Werelord without silver.
  • Our Werebeasts Are Different: Every werelord can (or can learn to) transform at will into a Huge animal. The type of animal is determined by the paternal line.
    • There's Werewolves, Werebears, Wereboars, Werefoxes, Werelions, Werepolar-bears, Werestags, Wereserpents, heck, one guy is even a Wereshark!
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: Drew and Queen Amelie.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: Duke Manfred outlives his youngest son Milo. Even worse, Duke Bergan outlives both his children.
  • Panthera Awesome: The Catlords.
  • Put on a Bus: As the books tell several different stories at a time, this is inevitable. Whitley and Gretchen are passed over in Book 3 and Manfred and Queen Amelie are passed over in Book 4.
  • Rated M for Manly: For a Young Adult fantasy novel it is about as manly as it can get, a Welcome relief from Twilight and other books like it.
  • Red Baron: Lord Onyx 'The Beast of Bast'.
  • Red Right Hand: Hector's "scar" from his botched communing eventually consumes his entire left arm, rendering it lifeless, but also making it immune to pain.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Vala the Serpent and Lord Ignus the werelizard.
  • Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves: Interesting example with Count Vega the Wereshark. He fought on Wergar's side against Leopold, but betrayed Wergar when he saw that they were losing. Leopold won, and Vega hoped he'd be able to get a cut of the victory spoils. Leopold then betrayed him, saying that anyone who would sell out his leader for gold could just as easily do it again, not only refusing to give him anything, but also taking his homeland, the Cluster Isles, away from him.
  • The Reveal: Baba Korga is introduced in Book 2, but Trent finds out in Book 3 that she died months ago; the current one is an imposter.
  • Rhino Rampage: Krieg the wererhino.
  • Samus Is a Girl: Drew's reaction to Whitley.
  • Sarcastic Clapping: Leopold is quite fond of this.
  • Savage Wolves: The Wyld Wolves are seen by the Werelords as nothing more than rabid beasts and a mockery to true Therianthropes.
  • Sequel Hook: Every book ends with one.
  • Snow Means Death/ Snow Means Love: Both Drew and Trent make their last stands against the Wyldermen during a snowfall. Both end their fights in the hands of a love interest. Possibly subverted as the snow turns to rain over the course of events.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Count Vega and Lady Opal can't stand each other after the former threatens the latter's children.
  • The Starscream: Pretty much all of Leopold's allies turn on him at the end of Book 2. Even his son, who is the one to actually kill him.
  • The Alliance: At first only the Bearlords and Staglords supported Drew against the Catlords, but throughout the books he gained the allegiance of the Ramlords, Horselords, the Romari, the gladiators of Scoria, the Jackals of Assai, the Hawklords, every Sealord under Count Vega and Baron Bosa, and the Tigerlords, while Gretchen gains the aid of the Werefrogs and Whitley convinces Duke Brand to help. At the end of the series, basically every Lyssian human and Werecreature unites against the Bastian invaders.
  • Threatening Shark: Averted with Count Vega, but played straight with Deadeye the Hammerhead wereshark.
  • White Mage: Hector again.
  • Written by the Winners: Discussed regarding King Wergar. The current king, Leopold, trumpets on about Wergar's warmongering and is what Drew has grown up to be. Starngely enough, even his former friends have a mixed opinion about the ex-king, although the general picture of him is that he saw the world as white & black; if you weren't his friend, you were his enemy. However, he was beloved by his own subjects. The trope is played with regarding Count Vega. Hector briefly refers to the trope, before the man himself appears and proves that he really is a jerk. Then he starts helping Drew and remains on his.
  • You Dirty Rat!: The were-rats.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Why Onyx has Leopold killed.

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