We Are Wolves
Katrina Nannestad
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
ISBN: 9780733340888
Awards Year: 2021
Category: The Book of the Year: Younger Readers
Judge's Critique
The setting of East Prussia in the dying days of World War 2 (1944-1945) is vividly and realistically evoked. Liesl's voice as the narrator reveals an older sister working against all odds to keep her siblings alive and together. Nannestad’s writing deftly reveals the ways people of different ages cope with the realities of war and evacuation. The story is heart-breaking as the characters become aware that Germany is going to lose the war. The children's hunger is palpable. The tension in the story is brought to a nail-biting climax. The language has moments of lyrical and descriptive appeal. The characters are complex with conflicting qualities, giving rise to the themes of individual identity, but also exploring the notion that nationality does not determine goodness. The hardback presentation is high quality and appealing.