“With the disappearance of that man there is anger brewing here, and there are those who would fight to destroy the wolves, and those whose apathy would see them destroyed. And so we must be the ones who fight for them. That will always be the right action to take.”Once There Were Wolves – Charlotte McConaghy
In Summary of Once There Were Wolves
“Inti Flynn arrives in Scotland with her twin sister, Aggie, to lead a team of biologists tasked with reintroducing fourteen gray wolves into the remote Highlands. She hopes to heal not only the dying landscape, but Aggie, too, unmade by the terrible secrets that drove the sisters out of Alaska.
Inti is not the woman she once was, either, changed by the harm she’s witnessed—inflicted by humans on both the wild and each other. Yet as the wolves surprise everyone by thriving, Inti begins to let her guard down, even opening herself up to the possibility of love. But when a farmer is found dead, Inti knows where the town will lay blame. Unable to accept her wolves could be responsible, Inti makes a reckless decision to protect them. But if the wolves didn’t make the kill, then who did? And what will Inti do when the man she is falling for seems to be the prime suspect?” –Goodreads
WARNING: infidelity, traumatic birth, murder, rape
READ IF YOU LIKE: environmentalism, wolves, Scotland, stories about sisterhood, mystery/thrillers/suspense, atmospheric settings, animal rights, Migrations by Charlotte McConaghy
|The perfect, Scottish, atmospheric setting!||The detailed brutality of the sexual assault scene seems unnecessary|
|Inti’s bond with wolves is inspiring|
|Combines environmentalism, romance, and mystery… unique!|
“There are languages without words and violence is one of them.”
Once There Were Wolves, you have my heart!
Deep and atmospheric, this novel will flood your senses and make you feel all of the feelings. Its serious, literary mood will set the perfect tone for a fall or winter evening of reading. (Be careful to check out the trigger warnings listed above, though, because the content is much more alarming than one may expect!)
This is my first environmental-focused novel, and it was glorious. Charlotte McConaghy is well-known for Migrations, which has now been moved to the top of my TBR because I am craving another environmental read. If you don’t know about wolves and the rehabilitation process for endangered animals, this novel will provide a first-hand, fictional look. Yes, wolves seem scary, but Once There Were Wolves will carve a special place in your heart for them.
Also, the Scottish country/mountainside is exactly the mental vacation we all need. I know I certainly needed it!
If you are not a fan of romance and prefer darker, serious themes, the romance in this book will not scare you away; the sister-sister relationship is a greater focus. Plus, the “whodunnit” mystery will keep you occupied with a mix of psychological suspense.
Really – grab your coziest blanket, a cup of something hot, cuddle up on the couch, and don’t forget the tissues! Once There Were Wolves is a must-read.
Once There Were Wolves Book Information
- Published: 2021
- Publisher: Flatiron Books
- ISBN: 9781250244147
- Format: Hardback (purchased through Book of the Month)
- Length: 272 pages