Book Review: Wolf Hollow – Lauren Wolk

I never even knew this book was Historical Fiction, Middle Grades, a Goodreads Choice Awards nominee, and a historical fiction book until I did some research.

Yes people my dad thought this was interesting, held it up to my face in Waterstones during our trip in London, the word “Wolf” made me think it was fantasy, bought it, turned out unexpected. Whew. That was a ride.


Name: Wolf Hollow
Author: Lauren Wolk
Publisher(s): Corgi (1st: Dutton Books)
Release Date: May 3, 2016


Annabelle has lived in Wolf Hollow all her life: a quiet place, still scarred by two world wars. But when cruel, manipulative Betty arrives in town, Annabelle’s calm world is shattered, along with everything she’s ever known about right and wrong.

When Betty accuses gentle loner Toby – a traumatised ex-soldier – of a terrible act, Annabelle knows he’s innocent. Then Betty disappears . . .

Now Annabelle must protect Toby from the spiralling accusations and hysteria, until she can prove to Wolf Hollow what really happened to Betty.

Powerful, poignant and lyrical, Wolf Hollow is an unforgettable story.

Book Cover Comments


A simplistic theme, small hills under the bright full moon on a bright blue night definitely fits the 1940’s or 1950’s villages (its this era right, correct me if I’m wrong) perfectly, as well as the fact that it is historical fiction.

The Review

This is indeed an unforgettable story.

The ending is pretty devastating and unexpected.

Not glossed over, something that reflects true reality of the times in America back in the days (yes Wolf Hollow exists somewhere in the US of A), the brutal and beautiful ending just lets readers pause at the very end and think about of the people back in the days.

When those who are being accused cannot be cleared of their crimes immediately if they are innocent, and how people tend to judge a book by its cover very easily. Without knowing a person well enough, it might cause consequences and endings where one expects the least.

Yes, I don’t sympathise and connect real deeply with a 12 year old kid. So I just made Annabelle 16 years old with a 12 year old intellect. Go me. So I really like Annabelle for the fact that she stands up to her own opinion and believes in her instincts to what she believes. And the fact that because she is a 12 year old, her child behaviour, purity and naivety is what plays such a big role in her character, because she does not see the constant worries of the adults. She sees what she sees and believe in what she believes, so that she could protect Toby, and so that she can be determined to figure out what caused these accusations, and what is the truth behind this. (For Pete’s Sake I think I’m tying in my class notes from Lolita)

And when Annabelle, despite being afraid, wasn’t startled by the stories that Toby shared with her, and at the same time, embraced Toby because she knows that he has been through hard times, and that he needs someone to lend a shoulder to cry on. (don’t take this previous sentence literally. I mean it in a metaphorical way.) Children, like me, at an age of 12 could be very curious creatures about the World. But Annabelle, despite her age, knows those times where she shouldn’t be asking questions and the fact that she needs to keep quiet at certain times.
I really like that aspect about her that respects other people.
Unlike me trololol

Not sure if the author is fond of photography, but the idea of bringing in photography, especially with the fact that it was so scarce in the old days, so that it could capture single moments and bring you back there, as well as possibly finding evidence, its just, ah. Tbh this book is really deep in the sense that I could analyse this like Lolita (shut up Joanne don’t ruin your reader’s lives by bringing up Lolita one more time), with the themes, personalities of characters etc.
And when these photographs just mean way more than these, when its most important meaning in the book is to act as capturing a moment of memory…

And while this book might not be thrilling or exciting or anything, if you enjoy a simple but devastating piece that ties in with a town that doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page, or if you’re simply not feeling fantasy, romance, but just pure “lost, loneliness, hollow” (50% ROLL CREDITS), do try picking up Wolf Hollow and checking it own.



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Joanne Lumiere

Joanne is the narcissistic founder of her book blog, Joanne Lumiere. Born and raised in Hong Kong, this 18 year old brat is currently attending college in Los Angeles, and still doesn't know how to read books with sophistication, and yet she runs a blog.

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