Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Wild Life

Wild Life

Cynthia DeFelice

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)



Erik is preparing for his first-ever hunting trip when he learns that his parents are being deployed to Iraq. A few days later, Erik is shipped off to North Dakota to live with Big Darrell and Oma, grandparents he barely knows. When Erik rescues a dog that's been stuck by a porcupine, Big Darrell says Erik can't keep him. But Erik has already named her Quill and can't bear to give her up. He decides to run away, taking the dog and a shotgun, certain that they can make it on their own out on the prairie.

In this story of adventure and survival, Erik learns about the challenges and satisfactions of living off the land, the power of family secrets, and the pain of losing what you love.

New Hampshire Great Stone Face Award ML, Nebraska Golden Sower Award Master List, Oklahoma Book Award Master List, Indiana Young Hoosier Award Master List, Wyoming Indian Paintbrush Book Award ML, Louisiana YR Choice Book Award, South Dakota YARP


Praise for Wild Life

“Themes of accepting change and learning to let go are woven into this winning tale of boy and dog.” —School Library Journal

“Sturdily conveyed, the lessons are telegraphed on each page…it stand out are the deftly folded-in gun lessons and easy acceptance of the way of life they accompany.” —Kirkus Reviews

In the Press

Read the Kirkus Review of WILD LIFE . A rare boy-and-his-gun story that accepts a hunting culture instead of demonizing the tool. - Kirkus Reviews

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Cynthia DeFelice

Cynthia DeFelice is the author of many bestselling books for young readers, including The Ghost of Fossil Glen, Signal, The Missing Manatee, and Weasel. Her books have been nominated for an Edgar Allen Poe Award and listed as American Library Association Notable Children's Books and Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year, among numerous other honors. She lives in upstate New York.

Cynthia DeFelice


From the Publisher

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

Latest on Facebook