Tell the Wolves I'm Home: A Novel

Tell the Wolves I'm Home: A Novel - Carol Rifka Brunt This was a sad story about a 14-year old girl named June who felt unloved and invisible to others except to her uncle Finn. Finn is the only person who she feels understands her and doesn't make her feel awkward and stupid. The story takes place in the late 80's when the AIDS epidemic becomes known. Finn becomes ill and eventually dies of this mysterious illness.

At first June's obsession with Finn was too much. It was a bit disturbing how she spoke about him as a lost lover. But then I understood that she did love him. It was a romantic love that at the same time wasn't sexual. He really was her first love. His death leads to a sometimes awkward relationship with Finn's longtime lover Toby. Toby and June are very alike. Two people who feel stupid and invisible and who lost the only person who made them come alive.

Another part of the story is Greta, June’s older sister. She’s the pretty one, the talented one, the perfect one. I think this is the story that really struck a chord. Oftentimes we become so blind to what our siblings are going through not realizing we’re going through the same stuff together. Greta’s need to have her sister’s friendship back led her to do some nasty things. She made me so mad. But at the same time I understood her. She was being thrown into a world she didn’t want to be a part of and all she wanted was to hold on to her childhood and her make-believe world that existed with June.

The final part of the story is June’s family. Her mother is resentful and angry that she was abandoned by Finn. She hates Toby. It made me very angry the way she would push her daughters. I know she meant well but she was blind to June’s need to be loved and Greta’s plea for help.

Overall, this was lovely, sad story of coming of age, love and just accepting all sides of who we are. Even the dark side.

*side note: this was an audiobook and sometimes Toby's accent just wasn't right. He is described as having a British accent that is "off" but the narrator sometimes sounded British, other times had zero accent. It was all over the place. Other than that it was a great listen.