Read: Tell the Wolves I’m Home

Tell the Wolves I'm Home on The SentimentalistIn August my appetite for reading increases tenfold. I feel fall nipping at my heels and I’m desperate to take advantage of the last few slow summer days, carving out more time to devour books before the chaos of back-to-school begins.  Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt has been my favorite summer read so far. In this novel Brunt perfectly captures the sweet naiveté and unexpected wisdom of a young girl teetering on the precipice between childhood and all that lies beyond. We the reader feel honored to peek behind the curtain and watch this story unfold through the voice of 14 year old June Elbus who is the narrator. You almost feel uncomfortably voyeuristic hearing June’s brutally honest inner thoughts as she experiences her first love, the death of a beloved family member infected with AIDS, and the tumultuous relationship that she and her often cruel older sister share. The story takes place in Westchester and New York City in the late 70s and early 80s. I have yet to read a book that so accurately captures this time period when I too was a middle schooler trying to make sense of the AIDS crisis, coming of age, and those first moments of realizing that the decisions we make often come with very big very real consequences.

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