by Joan Aiken
The Wolves of Willoughby Chase is not about wolves, but the fear of them is certainly part of the story. Set in an alternate 18th-century England that is terrorized by wolves, this young adult adventure will appeal to anyone who (like me) loved books like A Little Princess or The Railway Children. In this story, a young girl and her visiting cousin are left to the evil devices of a jealous guardian who takes over when the parents are gone abroad. The guardian dismisses the servants, puts the girls to drudgery and eventually sends them to a boarding school where they are little more than slaves. They escape with the help of a goose-boy and plunge into danger, making their way back home through a wilderness stalked by hungry wolves and untrustworthy people... This book is the first in a series of eleven volumes written by a prolific author. In the Dell Yearling edition I found the pen-and-ink illustrations by Pat Mariott especially delightful.
Rating: 3/5 ........ 181 pages, 1962
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