When Manny Wolf sees an ad in the paper announcing “Wolf Wanted” he responds right away, only to realize the company is looking for a real wolf. Luckily for Manny, so many wolves respond to the ad that he is hired to answer all the letters. As Manny reads between the lines of the wolves’ letters, with their glowing descriptions of themselves, he realizes that all the applicants are famous fictional wolves! Finding no suitable candidates, Manny finally rewrites the ad, clarifying that a real wolf is needed so ...
When Manny Wolf sees an ad in the paper announcing “Wolf Wanted” he responds right away, only to realize the company is looking for a real wolf. Luckily for Manny, so many wolves respond to the ad that he is hired to answer all the letters. As Manny reads between the lines of the wolves’ letters, with their glowing descriptions of themselves, he realizes that all the applicants are famous fictional wolves! Finding no suitable candidates, Manny finally rewrites the ad, clarifying that a real wolf is needed so that a documentary can be made to show people what real wolves are like and how different they are from their big, bad fictional counterparts. Mixing fantasy and reality with zany illustrations, this hilarious story highlights the very serious risk of the extinction of wolves worldwide.
Combining the wildly disparate themes of job hunting and wolves, Hans Christian Andersen Medalist Machado (From Another World) and Cardon, in his U.S. debut, follow Manny Wolf (a human with the last name Wolf) as he responds to a pile of applications for a job opening for a wolf. In sly, postmodern scenes that recall the work of Emily Gravett, Cardon creates cover letters (as well as Manny's rejection letters) using notebook paper, unsteady handwriting, and human resources stationery. “I am a very famous wolf,” the first application starts. “I have lots of experience convincing people to do what I want, especially small girls walking through the woods by themselves who have sick people waiting for them at home.” Beside the letter, a dozen Red Riding Hoods mob a wolf rock star, who croons into a mike. Letters follow from numerous literary wolves, from “The Three Little Pigs” to The Jungle Book to the fables of Jean de La Fontaine. Children won't recognize them all—some will stump adults—which may make for a frustrating reading experience. An environmentally conscious conclusion, while informative, strikes a disconcertingly serious note. Ages 4-7. (Apr.)
- Amy McMillan
A man named Wolf finds an ad for a wolf needed and decides to apply but instead he is given the job to help them fill the original position. He writes responses to various literary wolf characters, eventually realizing that a real wolf is actually what is needed. The final page is full of photos of real wolves in their natural habitats and a call for conservation. The illustrations include collage style layers of Wolf's letters to the applicants with varying fonts and actual stamps. This picture book is full of snarky humor in the vein of Jon Scieszka or Lemony Snicket with plenty of opportunities to discuss clarity, word choice and other writing techniques and styles. There are several allusions to stories that may not be readily familiar to most readers and the font and pictures at the end are much too small to be used for a classroom read-aloud but it could be used in small groups to launch discussions or as a mini-lesson springboard. The concepts and longer, more elaborate text make this appropriate for older readers. Reviewer: Amy McMillan
School Library Journal
Gr 2–4—With its appealing illustrations and clever premise, this book puts a different twist on the notion of job hunting. When a classified ad appears in the newspaper for "a good-looking adult" wolf, Manny Wolf—a human—applies for the position. Many applicants respond to the ad, and Manny is hired to read through their letters and to reply. Thus begins his correspondence with famous and infamous wolves from folktales, myths, and fairy tales such as "Little Red Riding Hood," "The Three Little Pigs," "Peter and the Wolf," and even the female that raised Romulus and Remus. The illustrator depicts letters from those characters and Manny's written responses; the narrator then explains in which stories the wolves appear. It turns out that the original newspaper ad wasn't explicit enough. What was needed was "an animal who can't read and doesn't appear in a book," so that a documentary about endangered species can be compiled. The story ends with a spread of information on "Wolves and Their Relatives" and a map of the world showing the animals' range. The accomplished illustrations are entertaining and full of energy and differing perspectives. Older children familiar with the tales and able to handle the lengthy text will enjoy the book, and teachers might find it useful for creative-writing classes.—Maryann H. Owen, Racine Public Library, WI
Manny Wolf is looking for a job. When he spies an ad in the paper that reads, "Wolf Wanted," it seems perfect. But alas, they are looking for a real wolf, not a human with a convenient last name. However, the company has so many applicants that they need someone to go through all of the letters. Manny is hired. As each letter unfolds, Manny begins to recognize familiar canine friends. Readers will delight in guessing which wolf, from several popular stories and fables, has applied for the job. The first few are simple; one unknown wolf boasts about huffing and puffing. But several letters in, the wolves get more obscure. One even has a reference from St. Francis of Assisi! Cardon's wolves are sly, with sharp teeth and long pointy snouts. Even Manny resembles his namesake, with angular features and two tufts of hair sticking straight up. Translated by Amado from Portuguese, the text is a bit heavy at times, but the letters themselves are clever fun. With a wink and a nod to fictional wolves worldwide. (facts on wolves) (Picture book. 5-9)