Mini Review: Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

Mini Review: Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk


A 2017 Newbery Honor Book

A young girl’s kindness, compassion, and honesty overcome bullying.

★ An NPR Best Book of the Year
★ A Booklist Best Book of the Year
★ An Entertainment Weekly Best Middle Grade Book of the Year
★ A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year
★ A Shelf Awareness Best Book of the Year
★ A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
★ A Wall Street Journal Best Children’s Book of the Year
★ An ALA Notable Children’s Book

Growing up in the shadows cast by two world wars, Annabelle has lived a mostly quiet, steady life in her small Pennsylvania town. Until the day new student Betty Glengarry walks into her class. Betty quickly reveals herself to be cruel and manipulative, and while her bullying seems isolated at first, things quickly escalate, and reclusive World War I veteran Toby becomes a target of her attacks. While others have always seen Toby’s strangeness, Annabelle knows only kindness. She will soon need to find the courage to stand as a lone voice of justice as tensions mount.

Overall Thoughts

I gave this book four stars. I really enjoyed how brutally honest Lauren Wolk was about prejudice, bullying, and how things can quickly get out of hand. She tells it like it is-that life is not easy and sometimes we have to make tough choices. She also shows that not everything ends as it feels it should. Wolk isn’t afraid to put some really tough events in this story to illustrate how some people take advantage of others and how people are quick to judge based on appearance alone. I loved the message on being accepting of others and fighting for what you believed in. The only reason I gave four stars and not five is because I felt the ending was a little drawn out. I love books that teach valuable lessons (who doesn’t?) and this one teaches a great lesson on empathy and fighting for what is right. I highly recommend this book.

So Many Quotes

This book was full of wonderful, beautiful, and motivational words. Here are my favorites:

  • “And I decided that there might be things I would never understand, no matter how hard I tried. Though try I would.And that there would be people who would never hear my one small voice, no matter what I had to say.But then a better thought occurred, and this was the one I carried away with me that day: If my life was to be just a single note in an endless symphony, how ocould I not sound it out for as long and as loudly as I could? (p228)”
    ― Lauren Wolk, Wolf Hollow
  • “My father looked from my mother to me, his eyes full of questions. What should we do now? How are we supposed to know what to do now?I wasn’t sure, either. But I knew I couldn’t spend one more minute doing nothing. I knew I couldn’t grow up and live a long life with the knowledge that I had not done what I could. Right now. Before it once again made no difference. (p 256)

My Favorite Part

I just love when authors connect their Beginning to their ending. Here is what Wolk did and I loved it!


The year I turned twelve, I learned how to lie. I don’t mean the small fibs that children tell. I mean real lies fed by real fears-things I said and did that took me out of the life I’d always known and put me down hard into a new one.


…where I learned to tell the truth in that year before I turned 12: about things from which refuge was impossible. Wrong, even. No matter how tempting.

I am a middle school teacher who loves to read ALL KINDS of books. I am part of the ARC-sharing group LitReviewCrew, a co-creator for the YouTube Channel Legit KidLit and the Podcast Read to Write KidLit. Check out my Linktree for more:

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