The tenderness of wolves

This first book, “the tenderness of wolves” by Stef Penney was a Costa Book winner when first published in the mid noughties. It was generally well liked by members. Several commented that the multiple viewpoints made for rather less flowing reading and consequently the story line could be rather difficult to follow. The frequent changes of perspective were jarring. This was a book to be read in as few sessions as possible.

Set in the Canadian north in the mid 19th century  it was evocative of that time and place. One reader disagreed feeling that while the cold, bleak landscape was well drawn the settlements could have been better researched.

Although the story is very loosely a murder mystery in truth that is simply a mechanism to set a complex set of events in motion. The principal protagonist is a woman , mother of a teenager. One member felt that that this enabled her to identify with that character more closely and added to her enjoyment of the book.

The book had been proposed by a member based on her enjoyment on first reading. Curiously she felt far less enjoyment on a second reading and was more critical of the book on this second reading.

Members were interested to discover that Stef Penney has recently had another book published  ” the invisible ones”


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