This is Not a Werewolf Story, because Raul, our main protagonist, is not a werewolf. A super fun read that features a boarding school, strange woods, a stranger lighthouse, familial mysteries, secret codes, and of being a kid. Oh, and escaping into said strange wood to turn into a wolf every weekend (when all the other kids go home). What's not to love?
A “heartfelt, enigmatic, and ethereal” (School Library Journal) debut that two-time Newbery Honor winner Gary Schmidt calls “a journey that every reader needs to go on.”
This is the story of Raul, a boy of few words, fewer friends, and almost no family. He is a loner—but he isn’t lonely. All week long he looks after the younger boys at One of Our Kind Boarding School while dodging the barbs of terrible Tuffman, the mean gym teacher.
Like every other kid in the world, he longs for Fridays, but not for the usual reasons. The woods have secrets...and so does Raul. As soon as the other students go home for the weekend, Raul makes his way to a lighthouse deep in the heart of the woods. There he waits for sunset—and the mysterious, marvelous shapeshifting phenomenon that allows him to go home, too.
About the Author
Sandra Evans drew inspiration for This Is Not a Werewolf Story from cultural sources, including the “sympathetic werewolf” stories of twelfth-century France and Celtic myths. She wrote the novel for (and with input from) her son. Sandra is a native of Whidbey Island and earned her doctorate in French literature from the University of Washington. This Is Not a Werewolf Story is her first book for children.
“This is a novel about commitments, and about mystery, and about our deepest identities—which is to say, this is a novel about love. In trying to discover who he is, Raul finds that the greatest discoveries are those of the heart, human and otherwise. It is a journey that every reader needs to go on, and how splendid to find a book that gives such companions to walk with along the way.” — Gary Schmidt, Newbery Honor-winning author of The Wednesday Wars
* “Raul’s wry, likable voice elevates this debut, and Evans’ depictions of the shifting natures of tween friendship remain firmly grounded even as the narrative becomes more fantastical. A cut above.” — Booklist, starred review
“Mystery and suspense abound in Evans’s debut novel . . . Raul is an insightful, introspective youth, and Evans weaves a compelling story from his point of view, bolstered by a strong supporting cast.” — Publishers Weekly
“Heartfelt, enigmatic, and ethereal, Evans’s excellent debut novel takes readers on a roller coaster of emotion and keeps them guessing the whole way through.” — School Library Journal
"Raul’s story of courage in the face of bullying and life-threatening danger in an easy read will appeal to readers of suspense and adventure tales." — School Library Connection