Based on the true journey of the wolf known as OR-7 (or Journey), this is the story of a wolf named Swift who begins life with all the best a wolf could ask for. His father and mother teach him the ways of respect and dignity and honoring the lives of the animals they must kill to survive. His brothers and sisters are playmates who fill in the family circle. Life holds everything they need and they are learning to be independent and self-reliant.
Then, the day comes when another pack attacks and our wolf, known now as Wander, loses everyone he loves and runs for his life. Nose to the ground, ears listening for the howl of another wolf, Wander and his compatriot, a raven, make their way through unknown territory in search of a new home and a new pack.
The parallels between the life lessons and travail of this lone wolf and the life experience of plenty of young readers rise up as the story unfolds. How hard is it to rely on yourself? How do you learn to take care of yourself, to get what you need and to find the right path for yourself?
This is a brilliant wolf's eye view of the world that reminds us we do share this planet with creatures who are wild. We have the great fortune to glimpse the challenges that test a lone wolf as they may have unfolded for OR-7 as he made his solitary trek. Every living being knows the call to belong to a family, a group of friends or in the case of Wander, to a wolfpack.
Bonds make life special and the invisible bonds we have to the creatures of the wild are powerful, meaningful and essential.
256 pages 978-0062895936 Ages 8-12
Note: In recognition of the true story behind A WOLF CALLED WANDER, HarperCollins Books has made a donation to Wolf Conservation Center.
To learn more about how you can help wolves, visit www.nywolf.org
Recommended by: Barb Langridge, abookandhug.com