[PDF / Epub] ☂ The Wolves of Willoughby Chase By Joan Aiken – Uroturk.info
I read this book thinking, I wish this had been around when I was younger Well, this is a foolish thought because the books were around when I was a child, and have been around for awhile Any books for children that feature a mixture of Georgian Victorian society, a dash of wolves, loads of adventure, and little girls learning to stand on their own two solid feet has my love I love that Bonnie is not only a plucky young girl, but also handy with a rifle good against wolves This story is one of daring, bravery, friendship, sisterhood and that very best ingredient in children s stories growing up with grace away from parents and adults I do wish I d read this book as a young girl because I could have learned and gained a great deal from Bonnie even if I was like shy, sensitive Sylvia at first This book is recommended to young girls and boys and any adult that still enjoys that bit of whimsy and wonder in their reading I would think this would be a great read aloud and share bookchokengtitiktitikchokeng See the Strange Horizons review of of Joan Aiken s book for a clear picture of this Wolves series Find the review here. This post is part of the 2015 Classics Challenge.WHEN I Discovered This ClassicI actually don t think I had heard of The Wolves of Willoughby Chase until I discovered the Vintage Children s Classics, my favourite series of children s classics I just love the design and the selection of well known and lesser known classics I bought I Capture the Castle in 2012 followed by The Wolves of Willoughby Chase, The Dark is Rising, Fly Away Home and Charlotte Sometimes in 2013.WHY I Chose to Read It It was freezing in February and I was looking for a wintry classic to read as part of the challenge It had been sitting on my TBR for a while and I hadn t picked up a Vintage Children s Classic for a while, even though I own quite a few now It s also meant to be adapted as a BBC drama this Christmas, but I have not heard any about it since it was first announced in 2013 I really hope it goes ahead WHAT Makes It A ClassicIt s a classic children s adventure story, full of beautiful descriptions of the landscape, treacherous characters and a thrilling mystery to solve It has a bunch of characters from Bonnie and Sylvia themselves to the adult servants that aid their mission that you ll be rooting for all the way A debate arises now and again about how dark children s and young adult literature has become, but you only have to meet Miss Slighcarp and her allies to realise it has always been that way they re truly ghastly Although The Wolves of Willoughby Chase is over 50 years old, its themes of friendship, class, gender, and the tendency of adults to underestimate children still resonate today.WHAT I Thought of This ClassicI adored it instantly I was fascinated by the idea of an alternative Britain where wolves may attack at any time I expected the story to be about the wolves, but it s actually about how the wolves aren t the real enemy here It s wonderfully written and I loved the vivid descriptions of Willoughby Chase, from the stark white landscape to Bonnie s delightful toy room It has secret passages, charming characters like Simon the gooseboy and a story that doesn t patronise children It has everything you could want I m looking forward to reading Black Hearts at Battersea , the next book.WILL It Stay A ClassicI think so It still feels fresh and exciting I hope the forthcoming BBC drama does the book justice and encourages people to read this wonderful story And once you ve done that, there s 11 books in the series for you to read.WHO I d Recommend It ToPeople who love children s books and want to delve into the world of classics People who love children s adventure and mystery stories, like the Laura Marlin mysteries People who love how atmospheric Gothic literature can be, like Jane Eyre I also reviewed this book over on Pretty Books. Wicked Wolves And A Grim Governess Threaten Bonnie And Her Cousin Sylvia When Bonnie S Parents Leave Willoughby Chase For A Sea Voyage Left In The Care Of The Cruel Miss Slighcarp, The Girls Can Hardly Believe What Is Happening To Their Once Happy Home The Servants Are Dismissed, The Furniture Is Sold, And Bonnie And Sylvia Are Sent To A Prison Like Orphan School It Seems As If The Endless Hours Of Drudgery Will Never CeaseWith The Help Of Simon The Gooseboy And His Flock, They Escape But How Will They Ever Get Willoughby Chase Free From The Clutches Of The Evil Miss Slighcarp Set in 1832, in an imaginary period of history, where wolves roamed during the snow covered days of winter, Sir Willoughby is preparing to take his wife on a cruise as she is delicate and in need of a rest raise eyebrows and their daughter Bonnie is awaiting the arrival of her cousin Sylvia who is to come and live with them Bonnie s life couldn t be happier with rooms full of toys, a dolls house you can walk inside and devoted servants.until Miss Slighcarp arrives.Miss Slighcarp is a real boo hiss villain and instantly shows that she is not someone you would leave your child with for one second but Lady Willoughby does need that cruise, so they leave and will not be available for contact until they reach port in several months time handy.Miss Slighcarp wastes no time in view spoiler dismissing servants, selling the contents of the house, including horror of horrors toys and dolls, burning wills and arranging an accident with the cruise ship hide spoiler It was dusk winter dusk Snow lay white and shining over the pleated hills, and icicles hung from the forest trees Snow lay piled on the dark road across Willoughby Wold, but from dawn men had been clearing it with brooms and shovels There were hundreds of them at work, wrapped in sacking because of the bitter cold, and keeping together in groups for fear of the wolves, made savage and reckless from hunger I dare you not to go on reading after that I read this book over and over as a kid, but it s equally entertaining for adults it s the book Dickens might have written if he wrote for young people, an atmospheric semi Gothic that follows the adventures of two young girls, spunky intrepid Bonnie and her fragile cousin Sylvia, when Bonnie s parents go abroad and leave them with the malign governess Miss Slighcarp, who is definitely up to no good Joan Aiken is the daughter of poet Conrad Aiken, and her heritage shows in her vivid use of language, but it s really the great characters that make this one so memorable dauntless heroines, some truly repugnant villains, and in Simon the clever goose boy and Pattern the faithful housemaid the kind of loyal and fearless friends we all hope to find, and sometimes are lucky enough to. The Wolves of Willoughby Chase is a lovely little children s book with secret passages, an evil governess and a goose boy I definitely recommend it to little girls who have a mind for adventure I myself had a little trouble at first getting into it, simply because I m just not the audience for this But eventually the adventure took over and I wanted to find out what happens There s a weird wackiness in the beginning, which made me chuckle Wolves jump up and attack the windows on a train Bonnie s parents have no problem leaving their home and their bank accounts to a distant relative who has a very unpleasant disposition A boy lives in a cave with his geese, even in the winter And the evil plot I won t even go into it Let s just say, I seriously have my doubts It was fun though This is an old story from 1962 so it has kind of has an old world charm There s not a patronizing message which most children s stories have today just a melodrama, and the villains are so obvious, I almost felt like I should boo and hiss when they popped up in the story Aiken has a lovely way with words and description that made me feel like I had slipped into a fairytale I give four stars Thank you Jeanette and Diane Lynn for the fun quick buddy read D This is terrible but wonderful.It s really a book that was published for young adults or kids, but published in 1962 so the idea of what constitutes entertaining literature for youngsters is really rather dated.I think the author was influenced by Edward Gorey and his odd, brilliant little books than she was by some of the other palpable influences, like Dickens and other masters of waif literature It s the story of a rich little waif so not a true waif, but she fits the archetypal mold who is left under the guardianship of a questionable governess, Miss Slighcarp, who arrives at the familial estate Willoughby Chase under questionable circumstances to begin her reign of terror over children.So very Gorey.Even the cover art and many of the illustrations throughout are a total Gorey rip off.I researched it to make sure it wasn t one of Gorey s many pseudonyms, but this seems to just be a case of an epigonus.Most likely, the author or someone responsible for the book design urged the illustrator in that direction.The book is ridiculous but fun The author has such a strange lexicon, and writes in purple prose, which is actually what makes the book fun It s a bon bon Nothing.But bon bons can be fun Let your mind get fat. Joan Aiken s Wolves Chronicles are wildly inventive fantasies, set in an alternate England where the Stuarts remained on the throne, making the Hanoverians the rebels and conspirators, and where wolves still roam even in London There are eleven of them in all and won t be any , since Aiken sadly died in January 2004 , and I think of them in sets of two or three The Wolves of Willoughby Chase and Black Hearts in Battersea introduce many of the main characters in the series, chiefly Simon, an orphan, and Dido Twite, a London guttersnipe, as well as Dido s family, inveterate Hanoverian plotters, especially her Pa, a musical but amoral genius Nightbirds on Nantucket and The Stolen Lake chronicle Dido s adventures outside England as does Dangerous Games, though it was written after Dido and Pa , and The Cuckoo Tree and Dido and Pa tell what happens when she returns Is Underground and Cold Shoulder Road tell of Dido s sister Is, and Midwinter Nightingale and The Witch of Clatteringshaws return to Dido and Simon s stories.Most people seem to think that the first three books are the best, and I d agree with that they have focused plots than some of the later books I do have an odd fondness for The Stolen Lake, which has Dido encountering ancient Britons in South America and an interesting Arthurian plot, but by Dido and Pa, I am generally happy to get back to England and Aiken s exploration of Dido s relationship with her family Although the two Is books are very good, though significantly bleaker than the rest of the series and Aiken is never afraid to be bleak or frightening , I was disappointed with the last two books, which are weaker of plot than the earlier ones However, all of them are worth reading, and the first three are generally considered classics of children s fantasy once you ve read those, you ll want to read all eleven of them. The Wolves of Willoughby Chase is best read when young, or by those with the ability to tap into their inner girl.I enjoyed the evil impostors who gleefully inflict child abuse Wolves is best read by kids who love to feel a bit of self pity and delicious horror.Bonnie is a bit of a simpering thing and there are lots of mentions of dresses and lace I didn t care about that My eyes tend to glaze over fripperies in real life too It feels like I m the only person alive who doesn t notice if someone mismatches their socks Sylvia had spunk, if she was spoiled I liked her a lot when she was knocked down some pegs.Wait, I don t know what my inner girl is I liked the baddies I rooted for the baddies as a kid I wanted Ursula to win don t get me started on my hatred of being called Ariel or, even worse, The Little Mermaid The m is not silent, little me would rage I liked pretty much all the Disney baddies up until the creepy bearded dude from Aladdin The baddies in Wolves are great They eat all of the good food for themselves They send the girls off to an evil boarding school slave house Mr Brocklehurst would die of envy They sleep in and are bad in a way that Lemony Snickett wouldn t dream of Phillip Pullman too ripped off Aiken s series There are also cool wolves Aiken writes atmospheric creepy wolf stuff very well It s like a dark side of girly books like Avonlea or something I m weird or something because I actually found this cozy than that.The Dido Twite books in the series are pure awesomeness and way, way better than Wolves I did not know about those until my adulthood, though I skipped college classes to blow through all of them Maybe I would have done that anyway Anyway, they are super Simon, the boy who lives in a cave, is the hero of Blackhearts in Battersea and Dido Twite appears The rest of the books are hers because she owns If you dig long range cannons, plots to overthrow kings, grinding bones to make your bread, kidnapping and pink whales read those books.There was a film version made that has very little to do with this book I saw it on tv when I was in middle school, and remember that I was much confused by the shared title Where did they get the turning kids into soap stuff from Sigh.P.s Edward Gorey did the usa covers Suck on that, England. Those of us who grew up with an affinity for Victorian books, it might have started here, in Joan Aiken s 1962 classic Gothic Dickensian love note, with its pitch perfect wicked governesses and wretched orphanages and aptronyms and moors and girls who are described as hoydens, and secret passages, and real dungeons, and all these wolves When we hit our teens and started reading stuff like Dickens and Wuthering Heights, it felt familiar to us we d already been indoctrinated into the rules of Victoria It s set in an alternate history of England, where wolves are rampant and something about a King James III, who cares, how am I supposed to know whether a given King James is fictional or not, you can tell it s not the real world because this is a place where geese can be trusted Geese cannot be trusted irl They are wicked and they mean you harm.Here s a great piece on Wolves from the School Library Journal s Top 100 Children s Book List, which is a terrific resource Its popularity spawned a series, but I don t remember how good the rest are.I read this a ton of times as a kid, and re reading it now, scenes absolutely exploded in my memory as I got to them Aunt Julia s pathetic poverty, Simon s hidden cave, Mrs Brisket s nasty daughter finding and breaking an egg in Bonnie s pocketThis is one of the first books in which I felt real danger When Bonnie and Sylvia are in jeopardy, they re really in jeopardy I wasn t wrong when I was young this is legitimately wonderful Now that I fully recognize all the tropes Aiken is playing with, it might be even better It has brave heroines and narrow escapes, and it s about as perfect as children s literature has ever been.