Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk (InfoSoup)

Growing up in rural Pennsylvania in 1943, Annabelle lives a quiet life where she hopes for adventure. She attends a one-room schoolhouse with her two younger brothers, walking there from their family farm each day. That quiet life changes when Betty Glengarry arrives at school. She immediately targets Annabelle, demanding payments in exchange for not hurting Annabelle and her brothers, killing a bird without remorse. Annabelle does not want to worry her family with her troubles, so she keeps them to herself. Soon though things escalate with her youngest brother running into a sharpened wire along the path. After that, Annabelle’s best friend is maimed with a rock that Annabelle knows was thrown by Betty. Betty though blames Toby, a reclusive man who walks the paths all day long with guns slung on his back. Toby has been nothing but kind to Annabelle and her family, but he is considered strange by many. When Betty disappears soon after making the allegation, Annabelle decides that she must rescue Toby from the new accusations being made.

Wolk has created a rich and beautiful world for Annabelle to live in. The hills and valleys of the Pennsylvanian countryside offer not only a rich farming world but also a place where secrets can hide and dangers lurk. The setting of Wolf Hollow itself with its history of trapping wolves in pits is a striking analogy for what happens in the novel. Annabelle herself is brave and clever, a girl who is bullied awfully and then has the power placed in her hands to make a difference for someone she cares about.

This book focuses on the courage it takes to stand up for what is right, for what one knows deep down to be true. It is a book that speaks to all of those who are strange among us and the way that rumors and accusations tend to target them. It is also about the power a child can have in an adult world, the difference one person can make. It is also a book that is dark and complicated: one where girls disappear, where Germans are not welcome, and where hate is fast to develop.

This is a complex and layered novel that is a deep and compelling read focusing on bullying and the impact of war. Appropriate for ages 10-13.

Reviewed from ARC received from Dutton Books for Young Readers

The long list for the brand new Klaus Flugge Prize has been announced. This new UK award honors the “most promising and exciting newcomer to children’s book illustration in a single calendar year.” Here are the long-listed titles:

The Bear and the Piano 

The Bear and the Piano by David Litchfield

Cinderella’s Sister and the Big Bad Wolf by Migy Blano, written by Lorraine Carey

Counting Lions: Portraits from the Wild The Crow's Tale

Counting Lions by Stephen Walton, written by Katie Cotton

The Crow’s Tale by Naomi Howarth

Dog On A Train The Girl With The Parrot On Her Head

Dog on a Train by Kate Prendergast

The Girl with the Parrot on Her Head by Daisy Hirst

Have You Seen Elephant (Gecko Press Titles) Hector and Hummingbird

Have You Seen Elephant? by David Barrow

Hector and the Hummingbird by Nicholas John Frith

How to Be a Dog Ice in the Jungle

How to Be a Dog by Jo Williamson

Ice in the Jungle by Ariane Hofmann-Maniyar

The Jar of Happiness Jill and Dragon

The Jar of Happiness by Ailsa Burrows

Jill and the Dragon by Lesley Barnes

Lili Lion Practice

Lili by Wen Dee Tan

Lion Practice by Emma Carlisle

Super Happy Magic Forest Toby and the Ice Giants

Super Happy Magic Forest by Matty Long

Toby and the Ice Giants by Joe Lillington

Too Many Toys! Wanted! Ralfy Rabbit, Book Burglar

Too Many Toys by Heidi Deedman

Wanted! Ralfy Rabbit Book Burglar by Emily Mackenzie

The Wonder Garden 

The Wonder Garden by Kristjana S. Williams, written by Jenny Broom

The Zoomers’ Handbook by Thiago De Moraes, written by Ana de Moraes