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The wolf stands at the forefront of the debate about our impact on the natural world. In one of the most celebrated successes of modern conservation, it has been reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park.
What unfurls is a riveting multi-generational saga, at the centre of which is O-Six, a charismatic alpha female beloved by park rangers and amateur spotters alike. As elk numbers decline and the wolf population rises, those committed to restoring an iconic landscape clash with those fighting for a vanishing way of life, hunters stalk the park fringes and O-Six's rivals seek to bring an end to her dominance of the stunningly beautiful Lamar Valley.
Nate Blakeslee is a writer-at-large for Texas Monthly. His first book, Tulia: Race, Cocaine, and Corruption in a Small Texas Town, was named a New York Times Notable Book of 2005 and The Washington Post called it one of the most important books about wrongful convictions ever written. He lives with his family in Austin, Texas.
"Inspired by the most charismatic of animals, this is a story of dedication and determination, of conflict and passion and like all good stories it challenges your thoughts and fires up your emotions."
– Kate Humble
"Gripping and fascinating! Wolf vs wolf, wolf vs man, man vs man."
– Margaret Atwood (via Twitter)
"Heartbreaking front-line coverage of our war on the wild [...] Blakeslee, hauntingly, gives the victims faces, families and stories. A quietly angry, aching, important book."
– Charles Foster, author of Being a Beast
"A compelling environmental drama of the reintroduction of wolves to the Rockies, as clear-sighted on human politics as it is on wolf politics. As wolf packs battle one another for control of precious territory, unknown to them another battle is taking place, between the wolves' supporters and those who would eradicate them."
– Neil Ansell, author of Deep Country: Five Years in the Welsh Hills
'Wolves are neither gods nor demons. Real wolves are complex beings with personalities, ambitions, careers, and – thanks to us – more than their fair share of tragedy. The Wolf gives us true profiles of wolf lives lived in their actual families. And when humans get involved, the trajectory of their lives forever changes."
– Carl Safina, author of Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel
'Blakeslee gives us a very different sort of biography – the saga of a single female wolf, "the most famous wolf in the world", and her exploits in Yellowstone National Park. It's a startlingly intimate portrait of the intricate, loving, human-like interrelationships that govern wolves in the wild, as observed in real time by a cadre of dedicated wolf-watchers – in the end, a drama of lupine love, care, and grief."
– Erik Larson, author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake
'Wild, poignant, and compelling, The Wolf is an important, beautifully wrought book about animals, about values, and about living on this earth."
– Susan Orlean, author of The Orchid Thief and Rin Tin Tin
"The Wolf is a transcendent tale of the American West. I loved the doggedness and depth of the reporting, the texture of the writing. There are echoes of Jack London everywhere. But above all I loved the wolf herself, a character like no other I have ever encountered."
– S. C. Gwynne, author of Empire of the Summer Moon and Rebel Yell
"An intimate and riveting book about America's most iconic and embattled predator. Blakeslee moves effortlessly between the ancient drama of the wolf pack, and its modern human counterpart, the sometimes vicious, red state-blue state partisans whose battleground is the fate of the American wolf. A wonderful and welcome addition to the pantheon of nature literature."
– John Vaillant, author of The Tiger and The Golden Spruce