The world of Benighted is familiar, but not its populace. The vast majority is lycanthropic; its members "fur up" under the full moon and become unreasoning beasts. A small minority is disdainfully called "barebacks" and despised as "cripples." The laws are strict about luning, or roaming freely, while transformed, however, and all non-lycos are conscripted into the Department for the Ongoing Regulation of Lycanthropic Activities (DORLA), which enforces the full-moon curfew by hunting roamers and bringing them to justice. Whitfield's well-limned protagonist is angst-ridden DORLA attorney Lola Galley. After a friend's hand is bitten off in a lyco hunt, and he is subsequently murdered, she takes a course of action that leads to extreme danger and shocking discoveries about herself and society at large. In the appended author interview, Whitfield states she didn't begin the book with a message in mind. The narrative feels teacherly, however, and the interview and accompanying reading-group questions and topics for discussion bolster the impression. Despite that, this disturbing thriller should appeal to more readers than just genre mavens.