The Wolf’s Boy
Author: Susan Williams Beckhorn
Publisher: Disney Hyperion, 2016
Source: Public library
Kai is tabbat, which means cursed or unlucky. He was born with a withered, twisted leg, and the leader of the People has ordered that he be abandoned in the wild to die. His father leaves him on the denning grounds of the yellow wolf pack. Death will be swift and sure for the baby. Instead, Yellow Mother claims Kai as one of her pups, licks and nurtures him. Kai survives. One night Kai’s mother hears a new voice among the yellow wolf pack, a voice she recognizes. She goes to Yellow Mother and explains that Kai was once hers, so Kai is returned to the People.
Though Kai lives among the People, he is never accepted. His leg is still maimed (clubfoot), and it is forbidden for him to become a blood hunter. Yet as he watches his older brother and others of his age achieve this goal, Kai, too, longs to hunt and to be accepted. Must he forever be considered tabbat just because of his leg?
Having no true friends, Kai turns to the yellow wolf pack for companionship. There is still a close bond between Kai and the yellow wolves, and when a young pup’s mother dies, Kai adopts it as his own. He names it Uff, and she is a wonderful and loving friend. Yet this, too, draws criticism from the people. They believe Uff to be dangerous, and even Kai’s family believes this to be true. When disaster strikes, Kai knows it is his and Uff’s fault. Kai and Uff must leave the People. Together, they face an unknown world full of danger, mystery, truth and beauty. Is this a world where Kai can find a place for himself and his wolf?
This book is great, not only because it is a wonderful and compelling story, but also because it made me want to learn more. And there was so much that I did want to learn. I really appreciate the Author’s Note and Acknowledgments. I don’t always read these, but I had to find out. Is Uff really a wolf? (The Author’s Note does explain that she is actually an early dog.) Who were these people? I wanted to learn more about the cave paintings. Simply put, I just wanted to know so much more. I love when a book rouses my curiosity as much as this one did. I also really appreciate the adventure aspect of the story. It makes stories more enjoyable for young boys who sometimes find it difficult to like real literature.
For more information:
To learn more about Susan Williams Beckhorn and her books, visit her website at http://suebeckhorn.com/HOME.html
***** 5/5 stars
Kai and his wolf Uff must leave the People and make their own way in a dangerous world. What awaits is a great adventure, not only for the characters but the reader.