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Eye of the Wolf Paperback – December 2, 2002


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-8-A lone wolf paces his enclosure at a zoo, growing annoyed by a boy who stares at him, day after day. Finally, he decides to challenge the boy and he stares back. But the wolf has just one eye, having lost the other when he was captured from the wild 10 years ago. So the boy closes one eye, and is then given a window into the animal's world. The wolf runs through his life like a movie, full of dialogue between the cubs and their mother, stories shared, adventures. Finally there is the cruel shock of his capture and the numbness of the years in captivity. When his story is complete, he asks the boy, "Who are you?" And as he stares deep into the child's open eye, a life of hard memories begins to unfold. The boy is Africa, a storyteller, raised carelessly by a trader. Befriended only by the animals he meets (who think and speak to one another and to Africa), he survives neglect and loss until he's taken in by an older couple who make him whole again. When habitat destruction forces the family to move to a city, the man gets a job at the zoo. And when Africa steps into it, he finds a world full of his friends, and one wolf, with one eye, and a story to tell. This is a simple but affecting allegory about how we treat animals, children, and our environment. The anthropomorphism gives the story a slightly magical feel that softens the horrors that have brought wolf and boy together. The sentences are short, and transitions between conversation and story are smooth. Soft gray pencil drawings illustrate the story. Easy and dramatic enough for reluctant readers, and with a depth of context that will inspire discussion, this well-translated story is ideal for reading aloud and for booktalking.
Susan Oliver, Tampa-Hillsborough Public Library System, FL
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 5-8. This quiet, atmospheric, philosophical novel tells of a boy and a wolf, born worlds apart. Blue Wolf, once wild in Alaska and now captive in a zoo, has lost his eye and his pack, and he has cultivated a deep distrust of humanity. Africa, named for the continent of his origin, is a gifted storyteller who sees Blue Wolf in his cage and wants to know his story. Looking into Blue Wolf's eye, the boy sees the story of the wolf's capture by hunters. In return, the boy tells the wolf how he came to be known as Africa. Through their stories, the boy and the wolf forge a spiritual and emotional connection, a bond both have always craved but never had. The cleverly told, introspective novel about fellowship, healing, and meaningful relationships is aptly complemented by haunting black-and-white illustrations. Ed Sullivan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Walker Books Ltd (December 2, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0744590108
  • ISBN-13: 978-0744590104
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 7.4 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,178,976 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Lisa Johannes on October 20, 2003
Format: Paperback
Africa has a story to tell, and so does the wolf he visits every day at the zoo. At first, the wolf is annoyed by Africa's constant visits to his cage. He wonders why he is there and what he is looking for, so he stares back at Africa, challenging him to leave and let the wolf return to his loneliness.
But by looking into each other's eyes, the two are able to understand each other's stories and recognize how their lives relate to one another.
The wolf's story is about the family that he lost-his mother, sisters, and brothers-and how he came to live behind the cage at the zoo as a sacrifice to his sister. Africa's story is about the loss of his family and his life as an orphan, a shepherd, and now finally an adopted boy with a last name. But when told simultaneously, the stories suddenly become about looking for home, about being needed, and about being important and meaningful, no matter where you are.
What a unique storytelling adventure! The meeting between Africa and Blue Wolf is an unfamiliar way to open a story, and the reader is almost tempted to set down the book. But soon enough, Pennac creates an interaction between the two that is magical and enchanting and that leads the reader into two dynamic worlds.
There is an unexpected depth to Africa's existance, and his mystical ways with animals is a brilliant contrast to the very human emotions of Blue Wolf. As Blue Wolf tells his story of daring rescue and escape, he becomes a powerful reminder of all that is beautiful in nature. There was no way to anticipate the manner in which all the characters come together in the end or the final power that Africa and Blue Wolf have upon each other, but it is fascinating, indeed. The language is specific and flows beautifully together as an extension of Africa's famous storytelling abilities.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By tabrega on February 21, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I read the book in other language, i.e. Korean, and with other
illustration. However, this is a really beautiful story whatever language it is written in. There is an wolf who has been captured by men and put into a zoo. When he was caught, his one eye was injured, but he didn't mind because he decided that one eye is sufficient to see the sad, miserable world of men-to his eye, men are as sad and miserable as the captured animals in the zoo. There is a boy from Africa who stands in front of the wolf and look at him directly in his one remaining eye. He himself has been through a lat of sad incidents all over the Africa - in yellow, grey, and green ones. What do they see each other's eyes ? How does the wolf change his mind and accept there are something even in this miserable world worth watching with two eyes ? It's a so beautiful and poignant story (and I don't want to spoil your chance to find it^^), worth reading over and over again.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on June 24, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Eye of the Wolf is a very interesting book. It told lots of different stories which ended up coming together in the end. I liked how the boy closed one of his eyes to make the wolf not feel sad. I also like how the boy could talk to animals and had relationships with all different kinds of animals from camels to wolves and cheetahs. The wolf's story was sad but ended up happy at the end. He lost his family in the wild and then lost his zoo family, too. But the boy became his friend and helped the wolf feel better. I recommend this book for everyone!! (The illustrations in the book are terrific and capture what is going on in the story!)
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By Debnance at Readerbuzz on June 27, 2014
Format: Paperback
Author Daniel Pennac takes us into the thoughts of an orphan boy, a wolf, a camel, a gorilla, a cheetah, and a hyena in a story that somehow brings them all together in a way that shows how all creatures are ultimately the same. A beautiful story and a novel story. A 1001 CBYMRBYGU.
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By AJF on August 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book for my 9 year old daughter, and we both loved it. The story is captivating and sweet. This is a book we'll read over and over again. I definitely recommend it!
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