In this striking literary debut, Carol Rifka Brunt unfolds a moving story of love, grief, and renewal as two lonely people become the unlikeliest of friends and find that sometimes you don’t know you’ve lost someone until you’ve found them.
1987. There’s only one person who has ever truly understood fourteen-year-old June Elbus, and that’s her uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss. Shy at school and distant from her older sister, June can only be herself in Finn’s company; he is her godfather, confidant, and best friend. So when he dies, far too young, of a mysterious illness her mother can barely speak about, June’s world is turned upside down. But Finn’s death brings a surprise acquaintance into June’s life - someone who will help her to heal and to question what she thinks she knows about Finn, her family, and even her own heart.
At Finn’s funeral, June notices a strange man lingering just beyond the crowd. A few days later, she receives a package in the mail. Inside is a beautiful teapot she recognizes from Finn’s apartment and a note from Toby, the stranger, asking for an opportunity to meet. As the two begin to spend time together, June realizes she’s not the only one who misses Finn, and if she can bring herself to trust this unexpected friend, he just might be the one she needs the most.
An emotionally charged coming-of-age novel, Tell the Wolves I’m Home is a tender story of love lost and found, an unforgettable portrait of the way compassion can make us whole again.
Carol Rifka Brunt’s work has appeared in several literary journals, including the North American Review and the Sun. In 2006 she was one of three fiction writers who received a New Writing Ventures Award, and in 2007 she received a generous Arts Council England grant to write Tell the Wolves I’m Home, her first novel. Originally from New York, she currently lives in England with her husband and three children.
©2012 Carol Silverman (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“A gorgeously evocative novel about love, loss, and the ragged mysteries of the human heart, all filtered through the achingly real voice of a remarkable young heroine. How can you not fall in love with a book that shows you how hope can make a difference?” (Caroline Leavitt, New York Times bestselling author)
“Tell the Wolves I’m Home is a charming, sure-handed, and deeply sympathetic debut. Brunt writes about family, adolescence, and the human heart with great candor, insight, and pathos.” (Jonathan Evison, New York Times bestselling author)
“Tremendously moving…Brunt strikes a difficult balance, imbuing June with the disarming candor of a child and the melancholy wisdom of a heart-scarred adult.” (Wall Street Journal)
I have and would - bought the Kindle book for my best friend for her birthday! Although the protagonist was a teenage girl, I was wrapped up in the story, and was really able to see the natural progression of the actions and plot, and not get caught up in why people made the choices they made. I loved the way facts came forward over the course of the story, and the way characters interacted. I didn't know what to expect when I started the book, and soon found I couldn't stop until I was finished the whole thing! Very interested to read more from this author!
Her voice was really unique, and added to the uniqueness of the story. I found her to be a really great fit for the narration of this story!
This book goes back to the 80s when fear and ignorance about AIDS brought out the worst in people. That is the backdrop to this story, but the heart of it is about love and acceptance.
June, the main character, is a fifteen year old girl coping with the loss of her uncle - the one person she felt truly understood her and accepted her for who she was. It is about the loss of her sister as the two girls, once extremely close, begin to make their separate ways in the world. And, it is about the loss of her image of her mother as she starts to see her as a person, complete with flaws. June has to let go of these things to be able to accept herself.
At the same time she is letting go, a new friend comes into her life. This person sees her clearly, in a way that unnerves her and puts the question of who she is and who she is capable of loving front and center.
The author handles the intensity of these relationships and the depth of emotions in a gentle and authentic way, allowing you to feel the pain of those adolescent years as you experience June's struggles. The voice of the character (and the narrator) rings true, and I found myself lost in the story and brought back to experiences in my life where acceptance by others was as crucial as acceptance of myself.
I highly recommend this book. I appreciated that it touched on heavy subjects without becoming maudlin. It is well-paced, well-read, and easy to become immersed in.
READ IT WITH YOUR SISTER
I ENJOY THIS NARRATOR
THIS STORY COVERS THE LOST OF A LOVED ONE, THE HORROR OF AIDS, THE LOVE BETWEEN SIBLINGS, AND HOW LOVE CAN HEAL YOUR WOUNDED HEART. I SPENT A LOT OF TIME CRYING ( I SUGGEST A BOX OF TISSUES)
I was so moved with this book it brought tears to my eyes more than once. At the same time I laughed out loud too! loved it threw and threw.
Oh my goodness yes
Read it you'll love it too. MOVING.
to my female and gay friends. not a guy book
love her womanchild voice
yes, but at over 12 hours, that wasnt possible
I was so sorry when this book ended! I intend to find more books narrated by Amy Rubinate. She is excellent.
This was definitely a creative story of a young girl's relationship with her uncle/godfather and his partner - both who die of AIDS. It is also the story of intense sibling rivalry. The writing was good, though at times repetitive. I usually love coming of age tales, but there was something about this novel that just didn't work for me. I think it was because most of the story was realistic, while parts of the story required you to suspend reality. I think that the combination didn't work.
Young Adult readers.
No, didn't think it was compelling enough to warrant a sequel.
Tell the Wolves I'm Home was very interesting and an easy listen but, I'm undecided on if I would listen to it again. The narrators voice seemed very electronic and flat at times which really threw me off at times. Perhaps I would read the book though.
I could not compare this story with any other that I have read personally.
Yes, when it came to the characters Amy Rubinate performed awesomely at making each character his or her own. However the generic narration would be a bit flat and monotone at times, it sounded like a operator recording.
Love Against All Odds
We'll written from start to finish. No student should leave high school without reading this and talking about it in English class. As the fifteen year old narrator reflects on her complicated family relationships we learn about her as well as her parents, her sister, her uncle and his partner. The characters are complex and beautifully revealed by the author Carol Rifka Brunt. In Brunt's hands the AIDs crisis of the 80s is sensitively and gently handled. Having lived in the New York City area I found the portrayal of a young girl coming of age near the City and dealing with the loss of her gifted uncle to AIDS to be credible and deeply engaging. I am looking forward to Brunt's next effort
I was born in the mid-80s, so the beginning of the AIDS epidemic is something I'm familiar with but don't know much about. This book really shined a light on that time for me without making the story about the disease. Instead, the book focused on what it means to be a family (in the most authentic, least saccharine way) and did an amazing job of describing how confusing and challenging it can be to be an adolescent at any time. This was a great book, and I'd recommend it to anyone – even if it wasn't typically their thing!
This is typically not the kind of book I'd pick up, so I don't have any other books to compare it to. But I'd seen positive reviews of it on some book blogs I follow and decided to listen to the audio version; I'm glad I did!
In recommending it to a friend, I sent the following quote: “Tell the Wolves I’m Home is a charming, sure-handed, and deeply sympathetic debut. Brunt writes about family, adolescence, and the human heart with great candor, insight, and pathos.”—Jonathan Evison, New York Times bestselling author of West of Here
That captured my feelings about the book exactly.
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