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Publisher's Summary

Set on the Minnesota prairies in 1987, during a drought season that is fostering the demise of the family farms, the story features two intertwining narrators: a father searching for answers after his son commits a heinous murder, and a pastor's wife who has returned to the town for mysterious reasons of her own. A penetrating look at small-town America, reminiscent of Russell Banks' Sweet Hereafter or Affliction, driven by a powerful murder mystery, Little Wolves is a literary triumph.

©2012 Thomas Maltman (P)2013 AudioGO

What listeners say about Little Wolves

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

What a strange book...

Can't quite get my mind around this one yet. I have few doubts that book clubs, having picked this book, will spend many hours debating what it all really means.

The plot swings from one extreme to another -- at points, it's almost too harsh to bear. A young suicide victim is refused burial in the "regular" part of the cemetery, shunted off, instead, to the section for the damned, those hopelessly beyond salvation. And then there's the 'prairie raw', parts, where the bleak and bitter nature of farm life is laid on with a trowel. For me, the dead animal quotient came perilously close to being too high. Time after time, I was within a hair of signing off, finding something a little easier to listen to.

But I didn't turn it off -- which says something else about this book.

It has its delightful moments too, some of them hilarious. This is a German Lutheran town -- seriously judgemental and harsh in its own right, in terms of how 'newcomers' are treated, in terms of what's done and what's not done. In that sense, Clara is a fish out of water. As a pastor's wife, certain standards of conduct are imposed upon her, and she is expected to comply. But she seems blithely unaware, or better yet, doesn't much care. One absolutely hilarious scene has her showing up, seriously pregnant, at a women's circle meeting in shorts, an incident that will no doubt be recounted with titillation and delighted horror for the next hundred years or so. That vignette is wonderful, exceptionally well written and insightful. I wish there'd been more scenes like that.

The narrator? Once again, this one didn't do her homework. I don't understand why professional narrators don't check for the correct pronunciation of local place names. In this one, Hillary Huber, who otherwise does a good job, repeatedly renders the Minnesota town of "Mankato" as man-KHAAT-o, whereas any real prairie kid will know it's man-KAY-o. Stupid error -- would only have taken a moment to check, and instead, it renders her as less than professional.

Would I recommend "Little Wolves"? Maybe. Sort of. I guess. I'm glad I listened, and I know parts of it will stick in my mind for a long time. Other parts are sufficiently disturbing I can't forget them soon enough. If you like prairie stories, with all that entails, you might find it as intriguing as I did.

12 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

Trigger Warning

I didn't realize that this book featured a discussion about suicide by gunshot in the first few pages. I couldn't finish it since my son passed that way in Jan 2021. Putting a quick note here for anyone that might need it.

4 people found this helpful

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Couldn’t wait for it to be over

The author apparently didn’t do any research as the whole book is based on the premise that coyotes are little wolves, in addition to a sophomoric plot that flipped back-and-forth between a disturbed mom disturbed daughter, disturbed neighbors, and a disturbed husband. In fact, all of these characters seem to have some mental aberrations. &

1 person found this helpful

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Great story and Performer!

The Little Wolves held so much meaning.
Hillary Huber did a fantastic job. She glided through voices so well I forgot that only one person narrated.
I definitely recommend Little Wolves!

1 person found this helpful

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Let me tell you a story

You just have to sit back and listen to this story unfold. Don’t waste your time time trying to guess how it’s going to end. Don’t worry about what happens next. Just sit back, listen, and enjoy.

1 person found this helpful

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headline

narration best part although the storyline wasn't your run of the mill ghost story either

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Great Mystery - Great Narration

This story grabbed me early on. Hillary Huber's excellent performance made me glad I was listening to it.

1 person found this helpful

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Bends the mind

The slow smooth voice through out the book still brought the deep emotions of each character. you really had to listen to connect all the details going on with the wolf story. a never suspected ending on with brother wad outside that night. the strong outspoken one of the slightly withdrawn.

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The narrator is incredible

The story was good, but the narrator Hillary Huber was incredible. The little nuances she did for each character’s voice- she is so talented!

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A definite must read/listen. I could not put this

Absolutely loved this book. a+ all the way around. need a sequel!!! love it

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Paul
  • 04-07-13

Very Interesting

This is the first book I have read or listened to by Thomas Maltman; it is very well written and the audio book kept me very interested. The pastor's wife story kept me wanting more throughout. The murder story had a unexpected twist at the end.



The Little Wolves in this book are Coytes and play a significant part to the story of the book.



The audio book is narrated by a women with an american accent which I found (being British) quiet annoying at times; but I did get used to it after a bit.



A good book; I would recommend it.

1 person found this helpful