Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase - Book 8 of 52 in 52

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Aiken is a delightful tale of the adventures of two young girls in England.  Silvia is sent by her aging aunt to live at Willoughby Chase with her cousin Bonnie.  Sir Willoughby has hired a governess to teach and care for the children as well as look after his estate while he takes his wife on a sea voyage to restore her health.  But if Silvia thought the most frightening part of Willoughby Chase was the wolves that roamed at night, she is sadly mistaken.  Within days of the parents leaving, Miss Slightcarp begin wearing Lady Willoughby's dresses, dismissing servants, selling furniture, and treating the girls like servants.  The girls attempt to get a message to the doctor's house for help, but it is intercepted.  They are told that the Willoughbys died in a shipwreck and sent to an orphan school that is truly more like a workhouse and prison.  With the help of a friends, they are finally able to escape and set out for the apartment Sylvia's aunt.  Will they make it to London?  Will they ever be able to return to Willoughby Chase?  How can they free their home from the grasp of the cruel Miss Slightcarp?

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase would make an excellent read aloud for ages 7-8, an independent read for 8+, or at about 160 pages a quick afternoon read for older children and adults.  I thoroughly enjoyed it and would highly recommend it to others. 


Jean said...

IMO Joan Aiken was one of the greatest children's writers of the 20th century. I love the Wolves Chronicles, so I hope you're going to read more of them! If I had the money I would collect them all, esp. now that they're getting weeded from libraries. :( I also adore the hysterically funny Arabel and Mortimer books.

The Bookworm said...

I remember reading Joan Aiken's books as a child and picked up copies of two or three of them for my daughters who never bothered with them. Maybe I should just take that as a cue to read them again myself!