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Extended Audio Sample Tell the Wolves I’m Home: A Novel, by Carol Rifka Brunt Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (17,140 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Carol Rifka Brunt Narrator: Amy Rubinate Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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In this striking literary debut, Carol Rifka Brunt unfolds a moving story of love, grief, and renewal as two lonely people become the unlikeliest of friends and find that sometimes you don’t know you’ve lost someone until you’ve found them.
1987. There’s only one person who has ever truly understood fourteen-year-old June Elbus, and that’s her uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss. Shy at school and distant from her older sister, June can only be herself in Finn’s company; he is her godfather, confidant, and best friend. So when he dies, far too young, of a mysterious illness her mother can barely speak about, June’s world is turned upside down. But Finn’s death brings a surprise acquaintance into June’s life—someone who will help her to heal and to question what she thinks she knows about Finn, her family, and even her own heart.
At Finn’s funeral, June notices a strange man lingering just beyond the crowd. A few days later, she receives a package in the mail. Inside is a beautiful teapot she recognizes from Finn’s apartment and a note from Toby, the stranger, asking for an opportunity to meet. As the two begin to spend time together, June realizes she’s not the only one who misses Finn, and if she can bring herself to trust this unexpected friend, he just might be the one she needs the most.
An emotionally charged coming-of-age novel, Tell the Wolves I’m Home is a tender story of love lost and found, an unforgettable portrait of the way compassion can make us whole again.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A gorgeously evocative novel about love, loss, and the ragged mysteries of the human heart, all filtered through the achingly real voice of a remarkable young heroine. How can you not fall in love with a book that shows you how hope can make a difference?”

    Caroline Leavitt, New York Times bestselling author

  • Tell the Wolves I’m Home is a charming, sure-handed, and deeply sympathetic debut. Brunt writes about family, adolescence, and the human heart with great candor, insight, and pathos.”

    Jonathan Evison, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Tremendously moving…Brunt strikes a difficult balance, imbuing June with the disarming candor of a child and the melancholy wisdom of a heart-scarred adult.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “A dazzling debut novel.”

    O, The Oprah Magazine

  • “In this lovely debut novel set in the 1980s, Carol Rifka Brunt takes us under the skin and inside the tumultuous heart of June Elbus…Distracted parents, tussling adolescents, the awful ghost-world of the AIDS-afflicted before AZT—all of it springs to life in Brunt’s touching and ultimately hopeful book.”

    People (four stars)

  • “A universal story of how love chooses us and how flashes of our beloved live through us even after they’re gone…With wry compassion, Brunt portrays the bitter lengths to which we will go to hide our soft underbellies and how summoning the courage to be vulnerable is the only way to see through to each other’s hungry, golden souls.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review

  • “With this debut novel that flawlessly encapsulates the fragile years during the mid-’80s when the specter of AIDS began to haunt society at large, Carol Rifka Brunt establishes herself as an emerging author to watch…Tell the Wolves I’m Home will undoubtedly be this summer’s literary sleeper hit.”

    Minneapolis Star Tribune

  • “What begins as a wary relationship between former rivals for Finn’s affection blossoms touchingly.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “[A] transcendent debut…Peopled by characters who will live in readers’ imaginations long after the final page is turned, Brunt’s novel is a beautifully bittersweet mix of heartbreak and hope.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Amy Rubinate narrates with a clear and compassionate voice, imparting a clear sense of June’s many insecurities and her struggle as she re-imagines her uncle’s life. Her vocal characters are well drawn across the board, her pacing and emotional levels on the mark. Finn, June, and Toby are characters one won’t soon forget.”


  • “A poignant debut…Brunt’s first novel elegantly pictures the New York art world of the 1980s, suburban Westchester, and the isolation of AIDS.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • Tell the Wolves I’m Home is a tale as charming and magnetic as the missing character at its heart. It’s a love story of the most unusual kind—several love stories, really—vivid and madly relatable, heartening as well as heartbreaking. Brunt is a captivating storyteller and a wonderful new voice.”

    Rebecca Makkai, author of The Borrower

  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month, June 2012
  • Selected for the Barnes & Noble Discover Award
  • A BookPage Book of the Day, August 2012
  • A 2012 BookPage Notable Book
  • A 2012 Kirkus Reviews Top 25 Book for Fiction
  • A 2012 Booklist Top 10
  • An Oprah Irresistible Read
  • An 2012 Amazon Top 100 Book
  • A BookPage Best Book of 2012
  • A 2012 Booklist Editors’ Choice in Adult Books for Young Adults
  • A 2012 eMusic Best Audiobook of the Year
  • Winner of a 2013 YALSA Alex Award
  • A BuzzFeed Books Pick of 49 Underrated Books You Really Need to Read

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Rachelle | 2/19/2014

    " As an child of the eighties I remember the fear and misinformation surrounding AIDs. How far we have come. Beautiful and complex, I love stories that are, at the heat, really about love. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Kristy Ashley | 2/17/2014

    " I think I would have given this 3.5 if I had the opportunity to. I liked. Did I REALLY like it? I dunno. I may have tainted the review because I not only read it, I also had the audio version and I listened to it. The reader on the audio version was horrible - she was flat, monotonous, and quite unlikeable. so if you choose to read this, then read it. Do not get the audio version. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by PhilaLilla | 2/17/2014

    " Loved this book. A coming-of-age book about a 14-year old girl who feels awkward/unpretty who is coping with the death of her only friend, her Uncle Finn. The books talk about loss in a beautiful way. This girl's also going through some cattiness with her pretty, talented, 16-year old sister (the worst kind of bitchiness--between teen sisters??) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Karen Douglass | 2/16/2014

    " This book will stay in my mind for a long while. First, because it's well written. The first person narrator is completely engaging and vulnerable. Anyone who remembers the intensity of teenage emotion and attachment will recognize the truth here. Second, I found synchronicity here: the important idea of negative space had come up earlier in the day when I encountered it in the novel. In so many ways, this novel spoke to me. "

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