Archive for June, 2022

Once There Were Wolves

Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

By Charlotte McConaghy

The Short Take:

After falling in love with McConaghy’s Migrations I was excited about this new one. Again the writing is lyrical and she delivers another rollercoaster flood of emotions. There is more plot to this outing, which incorporates a murder mystery alongside the protagonist’s efforts to reintroduce wolves where they aren’t wanted.


I admit there’s a lot of darkness in this book: abuse, mental illness, self-doubt, and that murder. However these elements are balanced by the amazing natural beauty McConaghy describes. The wilds of Scotland are portrayed in loving detail, as are the 14 wolves that the protagonist’s team are reintroducing to the wild.

The people involved are not so lovingly described. But then at a town hall meeting when people protest letting monstrous apex predators loose near their sheep farms she makes it clear she thinks the monsters are in the room, not in the wild.

Her anger, its source, and her journey to reclaim the woman she once was are intertwined with the journey of her wolves, as they begin to form family packs. Or don’t.

It’s interesting that while McConaghy lives in Australia this book takes place mostly in Scotland, which also played a large role in her last book.

A Little Plot:

Inti brings her extremely close yet highly withdrawn twin with her when she comes to Scotland to direct the reintroduction of wolves to a land where they once roamed. She knows the community is against her and fiercely defends what she is doing. She just as fiercely protects her damaged sister. She trusts no one, but it drawn to the local sheriff. And that might be a mistake.


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June 2022