Wolf Hollow

by Lauren Wolk

Hardcover, 2016

Call number



Dutton Books for Young Readers (2016), 304 pages


"Twelve-year-old Annabelle must learn to stand up for what's right in the face of a manipulative and violent new bully who targets people Annabelle cares about, including a homeless World War I veteran"--

User reviews

LibraryThing member foggidawn
Annabelle is having trouble with a bully at school. When the bully disappears, though, suspicion falls on a man who is a bit odd, but has always been a friend to Annabelle. Can Annabelle put together the pieces, find the missing girl, and clear her friend's name?

This is a beautifully written book,
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the sort of children's book that I absolutely would recommend to adults. In fact, it may be the sort of book that adults will love more than kids will. My only quibble with it is that Annabelle's narration seems very adult, a grownup telling about what happened when she was young, and she gives child Annabelle some very mature insights at times. However, that's such a minor criticism compared to this book's many strengths of plot, setting, character, and sentence-level writing. Highly recommended.
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LibraryThing member Tessa.Johnson
I ordered this book for the library because it won the Newbery Honor this year, but when I saw it was also a Dorothy Canfield Fisher award nominee for the 2017/18 school year, I decided I wanted to read it first! This is a coming of age story about a girl who is on the brink of adulthood and
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suddenly faced with tough decisions to make and secrets to keep. The ending is sad, but there's a little up-tick to keep it from being too sad. I think kids in the upper elementary grades and lower middle school grades will relate to Annabelle's conflict between a desire to protect her family and make decisions on her own, and a real need for parental guidance and support. Annabelle walks that line carefully and I'm sure many children will understand and appreciate her thought process.
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LibraryThing member melaniehope
I would consider this book for higher level middle school to high school readers. What a powerful and masterfully written story.
The book takes place around the same time at WW2. Annabelle is a young girl who lives with her family and 2 brothers in a farmhouse in rural PA. The trouble begins when a
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new girl named Betty moves in with her grandparents and begins attending the one room schoolhouse. Betty is truly a bully. In fact, her actions would be considered quite psychopathic in today's society.
Annabelle seeks help when Toby, the reclusive veteran who lives in the woods, is accused of a horrible crime. Annabelle attempts to clear Toby's name, but that only angers Betty and sets in motion a dangerous chain of events.
The book includes some very strong situations but at the same time showcases the power of resilience and friendship.
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LibraryThing member Brainannex
Is this a fantastic book? Yes. Would I give it to a kid to read? Maybe. Do I think it will get a shiny sticker in January? Yes. Am I still thinking about the audience for this? Definitely.

This book is a moving story, well-written, not clear cut and pat. However, that means that your average nine
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year old who is looking in the section where this book is shelved might not be ready for this book but it is not YA at all. It's a dang good book though.
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LibraryThing member PeggyDean
Lauren Wolk had me hooked from the first sentence: "The year I turned twelve, I learned how to lie." Set during World War II, Annabelle finds herself drawn into a series of disturbing events which coincide with the arrival of a new girl into the community. As suspicions fall on Toby, a reclusive
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veteran from the Great War, Annabelle must find a way to stand for justice while balancing loyalty to her family. Although the mood of the book is mostly gentle, I would recommend this for upper elementary students due to a few more descriptive passages of injuries or combat. Having said that, this would be a great book to read with your kids, because of the issues it raises about prejudice, bullying and honesty.So glad I picked this one up!
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LibraryThing member acargile
Some would call this a historical fiction novel, but it’s more realistic because you don’t learn much about the time period--the characters do walk to school and there is little in the way of technology. This story, however, could take place during any time period because it’s about how mean
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and misguided people can be, leaving the rest of us living with how unfair life is.

Annabelle lives in a rural area in 1943. A new girl, Betty, moves to town, and she is the ultimate bully. She is one of the meanest characters I’ve seen. Betty picks on Annabelle and beats her. She threatens to hurt Annabelle’s brothers if Annabelle doesn’t do as Betty says. Her physical abuse extends beyond Annabelle, and she finds a boy to help her.

Toby is a WWI vet who wanders about the area. Some find him strange, but Annabelle’s family doesn’t judge him. He takes pictures of the area and causes no harm. Betty decides to blame him for everything she does; everything Betty does is evil. These acts could get Toby arrested. This is beyond cruel--he’s been affected mentally by war, making him a tender soul. Annabelle is determined to prove that Betty cannot be believed and is a bully.

This novel teaches the reader that life can be unfair and we all must learn to live with this fact. The main character is a good person, raised by a good family. You’ll see how they manage to deal with meanness. If you like realistic fiction, this is a good choice for you. It’s a well-written book with lots to think about.
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LibraryThing member lindamamak
1940's wonderful coming of age story about a 14 year old girl who deals with bullies and lies to learn how hard life can be.
LibraryThing member sylliu
Don't pick up this book at 10:30 at night because you'll stay up until you finish it. It was a heartfelt, clear-eyed exploration of a young girl's experience with a bully in the rural 1940s and how lies told to protect can end up hurting and making things worse. Vivid characters and a setting that
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pulls you right into the world.
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LibraryThing member Whisper1
Well deserving of a 2017 Newbery honor award, this book is wonderfully crafted from beginning to end. The setting is rural Pennsylvania in the 1940's when the war is raging. And, while the farming community lives their quiet lives, still they are impacted by the war abroad.

The reader is immediately
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pulled into the story of young Annabelle who is bullied by Betty, a new girl at school. And, a lesser, but mentioned character is a German adult man who sells his produce and doesn't harm, and does not deserve to be ostracized by the local adults.

Betty is a new girl at school who is nasty and evil. While walking on the wooded path to school, Betty stops Annabelle and tells her to bring something the next day or, her two small brothers will pay a price. To reinforce that she means business, Betty uses a large stick to swing and produce welts on Annabelle's leg.

To protect her brothers, and placate Betty, Annabelle takes a penny from her bank, but unfortunately the bank slips and is broken. When questioned, Annabelle lies to her mother.

This simple lie sets in motion the thread that unwinds the spool of nastiness and harm to innocents undeserving of what occurs. And, as Annabelle watches Betty's actions, she grows increasingly fearful and continues not to tell her parents.

Like Scout in the excellent book To Kill a Mockinbird, Annabelle has an introverted male friend who lives in the woods. Toby looks a tad weird, but would never harm or bother others. And, because he saw Betty's cruelty, and cares for his young friend, he firmly warns Betty to leave Annabelle alone.

Sadly, Toby now becomes a target and watches as day after day Betty ups the ante of ugliness as her nastiness expands outward to others. In school, to find an accomplice, she wisely chooses an outcast who looks for trouble and is more than happy to help.

Because the town is already suspicious of someone different than them, Toby is an easy target. And, when a German man stops to allow the children to pet his horse, from high above, a rock is hurled directly at the eye of Annabelle's young school friend. Now, as others are dramatically, physically harmed, Betty sets the trap for Toby to be blamed.

We all may know a bully like Betty from our childhood, or perhaps in our adult work environment She or he is nicely dressed and smiles beguilingly while weaving nasty lies, knowing how to plant the seed that grows out of control, tangling others while stepping back, claiming innocence while blaming others.

This book is stellar in development, and never over dramatic. Well written, the reader can almost hear the sounds of scary background music as crafty Betty picks the most innocent, vulnerable targets, and harms for sheer pleasure.

4.5 Stars! I would have given five stars, but wanted more development regarding the way in which the community treated the Germanic farmer. He was mentioned, then dropped. Betty watched the adult treatment of him, and thus may as a result, become hesitant to tell others about Betty, but this wasn't pulled together as tightly as it could have been.

Highly recommended.
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LibraryThing member electrascaife
To Kill a Mockingbird meets, um, some other wonderful book from my childhood that I can't quite recall just now. At any rate, it's a gorgeous book and I loved every word of it.
LibraryThing member sgrame
11 year old Annabelle lives a peaceful life with her family in post- Great Depression rural Pennsylvania; that is until a new girl comes to town. Betty is the worst of bullies, picking on not only classmates like Annabelle, but also threatens her little brothers and is no friend to wildlife. Toby,
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a homeless man who roams the hills stands up for Annabelle. Problems escalate when Toby is seen nearby when a stone is thrown and a little girl loses an eye; townspeople do not hesitate to blame him as he is "odd". Then when Betty goes missing, Toby is the prime suspect. Annabelle can't just sit by and do nothing, so she does what she thinks is right. A powerful story, this would make a great book discussion book for grades 5-8.
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LibraryThing member EllsbethB
Well...this book wrecked me. I think you should go read it so it can wreck you too.

This is one of those books I finish and immediately think, "I'd love to teach with this book."
LibraryThing member mcintorino
Annabelle is the protagonist and narrator of this novel set on a farm during WW II. Her voice rings true throughout this little gem of a book. Annabelle faces a bully and liar in this coming of age story. Annabelle sees tragic events, and travesty, and grows up through her experiences dealing with
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these circumstances. Her courage and insistence on finding the truth make this a compelling story and a must read.

This book would be excellent for readers who enjoy a young female protagonist who relates her story with courage and conviction. This would be a good book for those interested in historical fiction, especially farm life during WW II. This is a good book for a unit on bullying and its consequences. This is also a good book for teaching lessons about acceptance and truth beyond appearances and stereotypes.
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LibraryThing member asomers
Beautifully written. The narrator's voice will stay with you long after you finish the last page.
LibraryThing member lilibrarian
Annabelle lives in her family in rural Pennsylvania. In 1943, a cruel girl moves in and makes it her business to torture Annabelle and threaten to physically harm her younger brothers. When the mean girl disappears, suspicion falls upon a strange man who lives alone in the woods. Annabelle knows he
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could not have done it.
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LibraryThing member rgruberexcel
RGG: Lovely. A middle-grade mystery set in the aftermath of WWI. The tone of To Kill a Mockingbird. Not sure of the appeal to the target audience. Reading Interest: 10-12.
LibraryThing member mckait
Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk is a keeper. It's a book to be read and read again. It's a book you give as a gift to someone who needs to know that there are people out there who care, even if they don. t say so in as many words. It's a story of trust, and of not just looking at someone, but seen
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through to their heart.

Sadly, this is also a story about bullies, and hate and bad things that happen to good people. It strikes me hard in this time when our country is so divided, that the story about an eleven year old girl, living during a time after one war and during another, can be so wise. Especially during a time when hate, like now, is rampant and trust is hard to come by.

It's hard to see a country divided by hate, but perhaps it is even harder to see it happen in a small town, where everyone knows everyone else. We have all seen mob mentality break loose at one time or another. In the streets of our cities, or to a lesser degree in our workplaces and even families. We need more Annabelles in the world. And we need fewer bullies.
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LibraryThing member ReadersCandyb
I was told that adults would enjoy this book too, but sadly I was one of the few that didn't. It was bland, uninteresting, and very juvenile. I liked the concept, but I was bored out of my mind. Toby was intriguing and if he was present more, I may have finished...

LibraryThing member tartanlibrary
Twelve-year-old Annabelle must learn to stand up for what's right when facing a manipulative and violent bully.
LibraryThing member niquetteb
A twelve year old girl is bullied by another girl and be-friends a war veteran squatter. There is a fair amount of disturbing drama involved in the story, that turned me off initially, but I came away glad that I read it in the end.
LibraryThing member Lindsay_W
“The year I turned 12, I learned what I said and did mattered. . . it took me out of the life I’d always known and put me down hard in a new one.”

A gut wrenching book that you so much want to have a happy ending for its 12 year old protagonist, but even she seems to understand that “there
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are some things from which refuge is impossible.” While Annabelle finds her voice to stand up to the school bully, it is ultimately not enough to save a shell-shocked WWI veteran. Well deserved of all the accolades it has gotten, and comparisons to To Kill a Mockingbird are apt.
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LibraryThing member nittnut
If you want to read a book that is comprehensive in its treatment of almost all the great challenges of life, this is a great one. The story deals with war, death, gossip, injustice, bullying, lies and the consequences of lying, trying to do the right thing and things going wrong anyway, and making
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things right, even when it's hard, and more. That sounds like a lot, but in the course of the story, it works. The story is not a happy one, but it's a good one. There is a lot of quiet wisdom mingled in with the story. My favorite quote is pretty basic, but it's always true. "Sometimes things come out right," she said, "Sometimes they don't."
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LibraryThing member jothebookgirl
A phone call in the middle of the night meant is never good news. I held my breath as dawn came and it was revealed. I felt genuinely sad.

“The year I turned 12, I learned how to lie,” Annabelle, the main character, tells us as the story opens. That year is 1943. World War II is raging, and
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families in ­Annabelle’s rural Pennsylvania community have lost sons, but the conflict is a distant one. Annabelle lives with her mother, father and two younger brothers. She lives on family’s farm and attends a one-room ­schoolhouse. Her life is sheltered and safe. Her biggest worries are her annoying little brothers and the unruly older boys at school. She’s never had cause to lie.

One day a new student named Betty Glengarry arrives. A city girl, Betty has been sent to live with her grandparents because she’s incorrigible. Her mother can’t handle her; her father’s gone. Very quickly we learn Betty’s a bully and yes she is than ­incorrigible and has no remorse. And for some reason she has chosen Annabelle and a disturbed yet very kind reclusive man named Toby as her targets.

Middle grade; ages 8 to 12
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LibraryThing member ReadersCandyb
I was told that adults would enjoy this book too, but sadly I was one of the few that didn't. It was bland, uninteresting, and very juvenile. I liked the concept, but I was bored out of my mind. Toby was intriguing and if he was present more, I may have finished...

LibraryThing member Robinsonstef
World War II is going on, but in rural Pennsylvania things are pretty peaceful for eleven-year-old Annabelle and her family. She lives on a large farm in Wolf Hollow with her grandparents, parents, and two little brothers. She spends her weekdays in school sitting next to her best friend, Ruth, and
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weekends are spent doing chores on the farm and going to church. There is a vagabond named Toby who wanders the town and did make Annabelle uneasy, but she came to see that he was harmless and mostly kept to himself. Plus, her mom explained that Toby had gone through a lot during the first world war and he might be a little sad. When Betty Glengarry comes to stay with her grandparents, things change for Annabelle. Betty turns out to be mean. She wants Annabelle to give her money and other objects. Betty bullies kids in class- both boys and girls. With a cruel glint in her eye she harms an innocent animal in front of Annabelle, only to later deny it. Things with Betty continue to escalate until the day she goes missing. The people in town believe Toby must’ve taken her. After all, Betty had just blamed Toby for two terrible deeds that had hurt children in the town. Annabelle believes Betty is the culprit and her heart tells her Toby is innocent. She vows to help him if she can. When the police and neighbors are out searching for Betty, Annabelle goes looking for Toby. What will happen if she finds him? Is he safe to be around? What happened to Betty? Will the townspeople ever believe that Toby is innocent or will they continue to presume he is guilty because he has strange ways about him. You will have to read this book to find out!

I had heard a lot of wonderful things about Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk, but I had no idea what the book was about. It did not disappoint! I really enjoyed the main character, Annabelle, because I could easily relate to her. She wanted to do the right thing, and she has a very big heart. Every time she told a lie I could tell she wanted to tell the truth, but the lie was necessary. I was so worried when Betty came to town and started bullying Annabelle. I was proud of her when she did the best she could to stand up to Betty. I liked the way the author describes the farm and the woods in the book because I felt like I was there. Also, giving the reader the background that the name Wolf Hollow came from a time when there was an over abundance of wolves in the area and bad things came because of it helped set the stage for the book (don’t want to spoil anything). I recommend this to people ages 9 and up who enjoy historical fiction and for those who root for what is right. I know underdogs pull at my heart and if they tugs at yours then you will turn the pages just as quickly as I did. This book makes readers think about how we treat people and the judgments that are made based on the way someone looks. I look forward to reading another book by this author soon.
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Nebraska Golden Sower Award (Nominee — 2019)
Young Hoosier Book Award (Nominee — Middle Grade — 2019)
Georgia Children's Book Award (Finalist — Grades 4-8 — 2018)
Great Stone Face Book Award (Nominee — 2018)
Utah Beehive Book Award (Nominee — Children's Fiction — 2018)
Pennsylvania Young Reader's Choice Award (Nominee — Grades 6-8 — 2018)
Sasquatch Book Award (Nominee — 2019)
Buckeye Children's & Teen Book Award (Nominee — Grades 6-8 — 2017)
William Allen White Children's Book Award (Nominee — Grades 6-8 — 2019)
Newbery Medal (Honor Book — 2017)
Oregon Reader's Choice Award (Nominee — 2019)
NCSLMA Battle of the Books (Middle School — 2018)
Jane Addams Children's Book Award (Honor Book — 2017)
Virginia Readers' Choice (Nominee — Middle School — 2019)
Black-Eyed Susan Book Award (Nominee — Grades 6-9 — 2018)
Waterstones Children's Book Prize (Shortlist — Younger Readers — 2017)
Volunteer State Book Award (Nominee — Middle School — 2019)
Massachusetts Book Award (Must-Read (Longlist) — 2017)
Isinglass Teen Read Award (Nominee — 2018)
Maud Hart Lovelace Award (Nominee — 2020)
YouPer Award (Winner — 2017)
Charlotte Huck Award (Recommended Book — 2017)
Read Aloud Indiana Book Award (Middle Grades — 2018)
Notable Children's Book (Older Readers — 2017)
Nerdy Book Award (Middle Grade Fiction — 2016)




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