November 17, 2017

Subscribe to SLJ

Little Wolf’s First Howling by Laura McGee Kvasnosky | SLJ Review

Get the latest SLJ reviews every month, subscribe today and save up to 35%.

redstarKVASNOSKY, Laura McGee. Little Wolf’s First Howling. illus. by Laura McGee Kvasnosky & Kate Harvey McGee. 32p. Candlewick. Apr. 2017. Tr $15.99. ISBN 9780763689711.

PB-Kvasnosky-LittleWolfsFirstHowlingPreS-Gr 2 –As night falls, a canine father and son head to a hilltop for an important rite of passage. First, Little Wolf watches as Big Wolf models proper howling form: he stands tall, points his muzzle skyward, and sings out a thrilling “AAAAOOOO….” Eager to give it a try, Little Wolf echoes the classic cry but can’t stop himself from adding a few ear-pleasing, scat-style embellishments (“dibbity dobbity skibbity skobbity/skooo-woooo-woooo…”). Despite his father’s patient tutelage and repeated demonstrations of the accepted method, Little Wolf’s creative voice will not be quelled, and he lets loose with howls that trumpet the “wildness and joy” found in his heart. Big Wolf is finally won over and joins his son in exuberant—if unconventional—song. The perfectly paced narrative is filled with warmth and humor. Full-bleed illustrations done in gouache portray stunning natural landscapes aglow with crisply rendered details and luminous twilight hues. The animal characters are endearingly depicted yet still retain a touch of realism, adding a sense of the untameable mystery of the wilderness to a sweet story about parent/child affection. VERDICT Fun to read—and howl—aloud, this tale of tackling a first experience with originality and élan is ideal for storytime or family sharing.–Joy Fleishhacker, School Library Journal

This review was published in the School Library Journal February 2017 issue.

Joy Fleishhacker About Joy Fleishhacker

Joy Fleishhacker is a librarian, former SLJ staffer, and freelance editor and writer who works at the Pikes Peak Library District in southern Colorado.

Share
A Day-Long Celebration of Fandom-Beloved Stories and Characters
Join Library Journal and School Library Journal for our inaugural LibraryCon Live! We’re excited to offer this day-long virtual festival for book nerds, librarians, and fans of graphic novels, sci-fi, and fantasy. Network online with other fans and explore our virtual exhibit hall where you’ll hear directly from publishers about their newest books and engage in live chats with featured authors. You’ll also learn from librarians and industry insiders on how to plan and host your own Comic Con-style event.
Comment Policy:
  1. Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  2. Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  3. Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through (though some comments with links to multiple URLs are held for spam-check moderation by the system). If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.

We accept clean XHTML in comments, but don't overdo it and please limit the number of links submitted in your comment. For more info, see the full Terms of Use.

Speak Your Mind

*