We Are Wolves


Author: Katrina Nannestad

The powerful novel from award-winning Australian writer Katrina Nannestad.

Shortlisted in the 2021 CBCA Book of the Year Awards. Winner of the 2021 Australian Book Design Awards. Longlisted in the 2021 Australian Book Industry Awards.

Sometimes it's good to be wild.

Sometimes you have to be wild.

When the Russian Army marches into East Prussia at the end of the war, the Wolf family must flee. Liesl, Otto and their baby sister Mia find themselves lost and alone, in a blizzard, in the middle of a war zone. Liesl has promised Mama that she will keep her brother and sister safe.

But sometimes, to survive, you have to do bad things. Dangerous things. Wild things.

Sometimes to survive, you must become a wolf.

Bestselling author Katrina Nannestad returns with her most masterful novel yet -- a book to crack open your heart, a book to light you up inside, a book to love.


Winner - ABDA Best Designed Children's Fiction Book 2021

Winner - Book Links Award for Children's Historical Fiction 2021

Winner - ARA Historical Novel Prize 2021 (Children's and Young Adult Category)

Winner - Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature 2022 (Children's Literature Award)

Winner - Koala Awards 2022 (Fiction for Readers 7-9)

Shortlisted - CBCA Book of the Year Award (Younger Readers) 2021

Shortlisted - Queensland Literary Awards 2021 (Children's Book Award)

Shortlisted - Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature 2021 (Children's Literature Award)

Shortlisted - West Australian Young Readers' Book Awards 2022

Longlisted - ABIA Book of the Year for Younger Children 2021


'The children's physical and emotional journeys, inspired by real events, are poignantly depicted as they struggle against the elements, hunger, and foes and try to understand the nonsensical nature of war and the unimaginable things it forces people to do to survive. Heiduczek's hauntingly atmospheric art adds to the story's emotional impact. A lesser-known story beautifully and sensitively told.'
- Kirkus, starred review

'A compelling mix of historical fiction, survival, and adventure, this title shines light on a little-known episode from history'

-School Library Journal, starred review

'This is powerful storytelling that will touch the toughest of hearts. Liesl, Otto, and Mia will stay with me for a long time to come.'
- Felice Arena, bestselling author of A Great Escape

'All the appeal, adventure and terror of classic war novels like Once and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, but with its own unique voice, humour and heart. We Are Wolves is a book for children and their adults to curl up and read together, and I feel as though it will be read and loved for many years to come.'
- Tristan Bancks, bestselling author of Detention

'This is quite simply one of the most beautiful books I've read for a long time ... I feel so much better for having read it, uplifted in the truest sense, and I'm sure it will be a story that is read for many, many years to come.'
- Karen Foxlee, award-winning author of Lenny's Book of Everything

'It's the small acts of human kindness that make this book sing. Heart-swelling, and with characters that won't be forgotten.'
- Zana Fraillon, award-winning author of The Bone Sparrow

'A timely novel recognising the silent victims of war and the courage and resilience of children to find joy in dark times.'
- Susanne Gervay OAM, bestselling author of I Am Jack

'In the tradition of wartime adventure stories, this is a heart-warming and engaging tale of endurance and survival. It's full of action and drama, but is also very moving and, ultimately, hopeful.'
- Jane Godwin, bestselling author of As Happy as Here

'We Are Wolves drew me in from the very first page and held me close until the last. If a novel can be both gripping and gentle, then this is that - a page-turner that somehow also feels gloriously cosy and quiet ... Katrina Nannestad's powerfully beautiful novel makes history sing.'
- Meg McKinlay, award-winning author of A Single Stone

'Told with honesty and insight, We Are Wolves is a sensitive portrayal of humanity at its best and at its worst. A story of displacement, loss, cruelty and deprivation, perfectly counterbalanced with hope, kindness, love and home. A timely reminder of the effects of war on today's children.'
- Glenda Millard, award-winning author of The Stars at Oktober Bend

'the best children's book I've read in years ... The way Nannestad has fostered hope and even humour out of her Wolfskinders' struggle to survive is testament to her remarkable skill as a writer for the young. There are scenes here that lay bare the cruelty of the times, but they are deftly balanced with heartwarming kindness and the courage that all children would like to believe lives inside them as well.'
- James Moloney, bestselling author of The Love That I Have

'a rare combination of heart-stopping suspense and lyrical warmth.'
- Jaclyn Moriarty, award-winning author of The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone

'We Are Wolves is a wonderful and beautifully written story of hope, love, grief and courage. I couldn't put it down.'
- Belinda Murrell, bestselling author of The Lost Sapphire

'An instant classic. We Are Wolves will stay with you for a lifetime.'
- Favel Parrett, award-winning author of Past the Shallows

'Beautifully written, uplifting and heartbreaking. The Wolf children's story will stay with you forever.'
- Judith Rossell, award-winning author of Withering-by-Sea

'an astonishing, thrilling rollercoaster of a novel, capturing both the horrific realities of war and the undimmed power of hope, grit and persevering love. Told through the eyes of the fiercely loyal Liesl Wolf, this is a story of consummate tenderness.'
- Lisa Shanahan, award-winning author of The Grand, Genius Summer of Henry Hoobler

'This powerful and compelling novel is the perfect balance of light and dark: challenges are met with courage, desperation with resourcefulness, cruelty with kindness, and the result is both moving and inspiring.'
- Frances Watts, award-winning author of The Peony Lantern

'Anyone aged 10 and up who enjoyed Lenny's Book of Everything and The Book Thief will find much to cherish here; I guarantee that the Wolf children will find a place in your heart.'
- Books+Publishing

Age Recommendation: 10+

Format Hardback
ISBN 9780733340888
Number of pages 320
Width 162 Millimeters
Thickness 33 Millimeters
Height 219 Millimeters
Unit weight 474 Grams