Book Review: The History of Wolves by Emily Fridlund

The History of Wolves by Emily Fridlund

LINDA leads a peculiar home life: her parents live in an abandoned commune cabins in northern Minnesota and are hanging on to the last vestiges of an old world. 

At school she is called a freak or a commie but, in spite of these names, she is an outsider in every sense. Her entire understanding of the outside world comes from what she learns at school, where her teacher is accused of owning child pornography, and from watching the seemingly normal life of a family she babysits for.

The accusation against the teacher starts to lack credence but the supposedly normal family turn out to be a lot more complex than she first imagined and she realises that they are hiding something.

Telling the truth will lose her the only semblance of normality which she has but keeping quiet will put a life at stake.

“The chilly power of The History of Wolves packs a wallop that’s hard to shake off. In the process, Fridlund has constructed an elegant, troubling debut, both immersed in the natural world but equally concerned with issues of power, family, faith and the gap between understanding something and being able to act on the knowledge.” – The LA Times