Book Review: Wolf Hollow

15 Jun

26026063“The year I turned twelve, I learned how to lie. The year I turned twelve, I learned that what I said and did mattered.”  And with those words, you’ll meet Annabelle a 12-year old girl, living in rural Pennsylvania in the early 1940s.  Her life is fairly simple, helping her family on the farm, sharing a desk at school with her best friend and befriending a World War I veteran named Toby who struggles with day-to-day live after returning from the front.

It’s only when Betty Glengarry moves in with grandparents, does Annabelle’s world get shaken as Betty begins bullying Annabelle.  As the days past and Betty’s threats escalate, Toby becomes involved as a protector for Annabelle, until the unthinkable happens and Annabelle’s friend is injured and Betty disappears.  The community blames Toby and Annabelle must choose between what is right and what is easy.  She knows in her heart that Toby is innocent and stands by his side as the community turns against the strange recluse.

This story is beautifully written by debut author, Lauren Wolk and is not only a historical fiction story, but a story of bullying, standing up for yourself and others who can’t stand up for themselves.  It’s the story of veterans, PTSD, family and courage.  It’s heartbreaking and hopeful and is already garnering Newbery buzz.  And I think it definitely has the possibility of being a strong choice for the Newbery Award this year.  Some have compared it to To Kill a Mockingbird and I can see the comparisons.  Some have also been concerned with the middle grade reading level.  Although this book doesn’t shy away from a number of “issues,” it does it in a way that I believe middle grade readers will react to and create a perfect opportunity for discussion in school, at home or with friends.

Twitter Booktalk (14o characters or less): Wolf Hollow is a haunting & hopeful historical story of standing up for yourself & those who can’t stand up for themselves. @LaurenWolkBooks

Title: Wolf Hollow
Author: Lauren Wolk
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: 2016
Page Numbers: 304 pgs.

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2 Responses to “Book Review: Wolf Hollow”

  1. beckyginther June 15, 2016 at 7:40 pm #

    This sounds really interesting. I have to add it to my to read list!

    • literacious June 15, 2016 at 8:07 pm #

      I have an ARC at my desk if you want to snag it!

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