Monday, July 8, 2019

A WOLF CALLED WANDER by Rosanne Parry – A glimpse of wolf’s perspective on the wilderness

Such an interesting story about wolves! I read this one as an e-book from my local library, but a print copy would be better to fully appreciate the lovely black and white drawings by illustrator Mónica Armiño.

Description from the publisher

This gripping novel about survival and family is based on the real story of one wolf’s incredible journey to find a safe place to call home. Illustrated throughout, this irresistible tale by award-winning author Rosanne Parry is for fans of Sara Pennypacker’s Pax and Katherine Applegate’s The One and Only Ivan.

Swift, a young wolf cub, lives with his pack in the mountains learning to hunt, competing with his brothers and sisters for hierarchy, and watching over a new litter of cubs. Then a rival pack attacks, and Swift and his family scatter.

Alone and scared, Swift must flee and find a new home. His journey takes him a remarkable one thousand miles across the Pacific Northwest. The trip is full of peril, and Swift encounters forest fires, hunters, highways, and hunger before he finds his new home.

A Wolf Called Wander by Rosanne Parry was published by Greenwillow Books in 2019.

Why you want to read this book:

It’s an exciting survival story, told from an animal’s perspective. It was hard to put down this story as I followed Swift through childhood, tragedy and survival without his pack. It was super interested to learn about wolf behaviour as I was reading.  Keep in mind that this story includes realistic details about wolf hunting their prey, for anyone who is squeamish. The wolves are portrayed as living, wild animals—hunting, fighting, sustaining injuries.

I spring to my feet and run. The fire is on my heels, scorching my paws. Fire is above my head, singing my fur.


I begin in darkness, and my nose tells me everything I know.

If you’re a writer…

You might want to study this book to see how to use description and action to create an animal perspective. It’s especially interesting to look at all the sensory details from a wolf point of view! I liked the way the author created a complete world for the wolves by developing their beliefs and thoughts about family and their own culture.  

Our voices bounce off the mountains. They reach for the wolf star.

If you’re an educator…

This book will satisfy the curiosity of anyone interested in wolves! At the back of the book, there’s lots of information about wolves and their habitats, as well as details about how research information on wolves is collected. I was really interested to learn that the story was inspired by the life of a real wolf in Oregon.

Check out another review of this book from a family perspective at Some the Wiser.  

If you’re looking for another great list of middle grade books to read, check out Marvelous Middle Grade Monday on Greg Pattridge's blog.


  1. That's awesome that you like this enough to want to buy a copy. It says a lot for how good the story is. Glad to see Rosanne Perry has another winner story.

  2. I've enjoyed Roseanne's previous books like Turn of the Tide and Written in Stone. After reading your review I've put this one high on my list to read in the next few months.

  3. I'm so far behind since my illness that I hadn't even heard of this! But I love how the wolves have their own culture. Have you ever read The Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series by Michelle Paver? Torak's companion, Wolf, tells some of the story from his own POV. And I still remember how Wolf describes fire: the bright beast that bites hot!

  4. Ah, I love survival stories and I love wolves. I will have to check this one out. Thanks for telling me about it.

  5. This book sounds fantastic. This is my first time hearing of it. Interesting that it is told from a wolf's point of view. Thanks for sharing. :)

  6. Thanks for sharing. Good point of view!


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