Why Werewolves are Nazis in LADY LAZARUS
It’s funny how you make assumptions based upon the world of your imagination. A number of people have told me that they didn’t understand why the werewolves in LADY LAZARUS are members of the Nazi SS. One person even expressed a wish that my story didn’t have “all those werewolves” in it (as if it would be a bad thing to have werewolves! The very notion! LOL )
My first impulse is to say, “Of course the wolves are Nazis, because…they are.” That’s just how they appear in my mind, and when I write about this stuff I go with what I have.
But my imagination is working off the research I did to create the characters and situations that end up playing out. Historical fantasy, at least the way I write it, grows out of the actual history of the period. The werewolves are Nazis in LADY LAZARUS (though not necessary 100% through the entire series) because:
1. There was an actual SS Werewolf unit — It was formed to conduct guerilla and partisan operations should the Germans lose the war.
2. Hitler’s chief outpost on the Eastern Front was called Wolf’s Lair, in Northern Poland; this was the site of the famous 1944 assassination plot depicted in the Tom Cruise movie Valkyrie.
3. Hitler called himself “wolf” and loved his German shepherd “Blondi” more than most or all of the human beings in his life. He identified strongly with wolves, and I imagined that werewolves would have strongly identified with him, to the point of naming him Pack Leader Supreme.
Generally speaking, the most fanciful parts of LADY LAZARUS are the ones closest to the truth…and the parts that seem most outrageous are the ones I didn’t make up at all :-)