Saturday, 3 May 2014

Review: Two Wolves

Two Wolves 
by Tristan Bancks

A Cherokee Indian grandfather tells his grandson that there is a battle raging inside him, inside all of us. A terrible battle between two wolves. One wolf is bad - pride, jealousy, greed. The other wolf is good - kindness, hope, truth. The child asks, 'Who will win?' The grandfather answers simply, 'The one you feed.'

One afternoon, police officers show up at Ben Silver's front door. Minutes after they leave, his parents arrive home. Ben and his little sister Olive are bundled into the car and told they're going on a holiday. But are they? It doesn't take long for Ben to realise that his parents are in trouble. Ben's always dreamt of becoming a detective - his dad even calls him 'Cop'. Now Ben gathers evidence and tries to uncover what his parents have done. The problem is, if he figures it out, what does he do? Tell someone? Or keep the secret and live life on the run?

Review copy provided by Random House Australia in exchange for an honest review. 


Two Wolves is a hard book for to write about. I honestly am confused by my feelings towards it. On one hand, I enjoyed the honest and sweet perspective of Ben but on the other hand, I was bored and could barely follow the dull and plodding plotline. 

The writing is what made me tolerate reading this. It was kept simple as the protagonist is quite young, but it was filled with a raw honesty and innocence that worked quite well to create the intensity of the situation that Ben and Olive found themselves in. The descriptions of the barren cabin land where they were staying painted a clear picture about just how confused and scared both Ben and Olive were.

Ben was an okay protagonist. I like how he questioned his own motives and wanted to be the best man he could despite his young age. His ideas about what makes a person "good" was cute and I really appreciated that despite everything going on he only wanted what was best. Olive was wonderful. I really loved her feistiness.

What let this down for me was the fact that I wasn't kept engaged by the "mystery". Honestly, I didn't really care about it. It was rather dull and I kept waiting for something to happen, something dramatic, something exciting, but nothing did and I was just bored. 

While the writing was good, I have to say my lack of interested really bought this down. In the right hands, I can see that Two Wolves might work for some other readers, but just not for me.

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