Counting Wolves

Counting Wolves

by Michael F. Stewart


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The Breakfast Club meets Grimm's Fairy Tales in the lair of an adolescent psych ward.

Milly’s evil stepmother commits her to a pediatric psych ward. That’s just what the wolf wants. With bunk mates like Red, who’s spiraling out of control; Pig, a fire-bug who claims Milly as her own—but just wants extra dessert—Vanet, a manic teen masquerading as a fairy godmother with wish-granting powers as likely to kill as to help; and the mysterious Wolfgang, rumored to roam for blood at night; it doesn’t take long for Milly to realize that only her dead mother’s book of tales can save her.

But Milly’s spells of protection weaken as her wolf stalks the hospital corridors. The ward’s a Dark Wood, and she’s not alone. As her power crumbles, she must let go of her magic and discover new weapons if she is to transform from hunted to hunter.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780993757945
Publisher: Michael F. Stewart
Publication date: 06/13/2017
Pages: 226
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)
Age Range: 14 - 18 Years

About the Author

Michael F. Stewart is the winner of the 2015 Claymore Award and author of the Assured Destruction Series (a Foreword Book of the Year Honorable Mention, Library Journal's Best Self Published Book 2015: runner-up, semifinalist in the 2014 Kindle Book Awards, and winner of The Creation of Stories: Best YA Award at the Toronto International Book Fair).

He likes to combine storytelling with technology and pioneered interactive storytelling with Scholastic Canada, Australia and New Zealand's, anti-cyberbullying program Bully For You. He has authored four graphic novels with Oxford University Press Canada's award winning Boldprint series. Publications of nonfiction titles on Corruption and Children's Rights published by Scholastic Education as well as early readers and three forthcoming novellas with Pearson.

Herder of four daughters, Michael lives to write in Ottawa where he was the Ottawa Public Library's first Writer in Residence and runs free writing workshops.

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Counting Wolves 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"The Breakfast Club meets Grimm's Fairy Tales in the lair of an adolescent psych ward." This line alone was enough to get me super excited to read this book. I love The Breakfast Club AND I love any books that are retellings, reimaginings or even just linked to/crossed over with standard fairy tales. Michael F Stewart brings us Milly's world. Milly and her counting. Milly and the Wolf. Milly and the Psych Ward. Milly and her fellow patients. It's all about Milly. Milly suffers from OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and is a counter. It keeps the wolf away. Firstly, the main character is really intriguing right from the beginning. She is a fascinating girl who is coping in her own way with her wolf. The side characters, Pig, Red & Vanet (to name a few) are equally fascinating. They all have their own issues and their own ways of dealing with what life throws at them. The book is a really quick read. It pulls you in from the first chapter and I, for one, felt like I was in the psych ward with all the characters. An absolutely fantastic book that has gone straight into my favourite reads list. I can't wait to read something else by this author. It was recommended to me by a fellow Netgalley member.
Lisa_Loves_Literature More than 1 year ago
This book reminded me a lot of the book Liar, by Justine Larbalestier. Throughout the beginning of the book, I wondered, is this really a magical story, or is it just a girl who is dealing with psychological issues that cause her OCD and nightmares. I really liked how the author took the different illnesses and conditions of the patients in the psych ward and made them into aspects of a fairy tale. This is part of what kept me guessing the entire time on which way the story was actually going to go. All of the characters were really well developed and had interesting stories, except maybe Red. While she definitely had a great back story and symptoms/aspects of a fairy tale, I don't know that I got to really "see" her character as I read it. But Pig was very easily pictured, as well as Vanet and Peter. Another interesting bit is how everyone had the name or nickname that fit them into the fairy tale. That was another detail the author wove throughout the story that kept me on my toes looking to see just what was real and what was not. It wasn't just the characters themselves that were good though, it was a lot of the interactions between them. I liked the relationship between Milly and her evil stepmother. The relationship between Milly and Vanet. I liked how Milly's character was realistically trying to overcome her counting and other issues, but had setbacks that made sense. She didn't just magically overcome those issues because she was there and figuring things out. In the end, I was a bit disappointed with how it ended. Almost a little too vague of an ending for me. But I know there are those out there who enjoy those sorts of endings, and they will be pleased. I won't say which direction the story ends up going, if there is a magical fairy tale aspect to it that is more than just her psychological issues, I'll let you read it and see for yourself!
Andy Jarman More than 1 year ago
I’m going to begin by saying that I am neither a professional nor a person with OCD and therefore cannot say 100% certainty that this is accurate representation for those who do have it. If you’ve found this to be inaccurate, please let me know in the comments below! This story follows a young teen named Milly who suffers from OCD and anxiety since the death of her mother. After fainting in gym class, her step-mother admits her to the psychiatric unit of the hospital in order to be treated for the above illnesses, as well as to figure out why Milly feels the need to count to 100 before doing certain things and ‘keeping the wolf away’. I very much enjoyed this story. The writing style flowed well and I found myself reading into the night to find out what’s happening, to find out the truth. The characters were certainly intriguing and learning more about each character as the story went along and what their ‘wolf’ means to them was interesting, it really showed that each person is different and processes things differently to others. It also showed that by opening up, you can receive help or at least open up the opportunity for help. The reason for this not being a perfect 5/5 story though was because there were certain scenes where I was made to feel uncomfortable but that was due to a personal factor, not because the book itself was wrong or bad. As I said before, everyone is different and will react in different ways. Another thing about it was that the cover was a little misleading, the summary too. It felt like it was going to be more of a horror story or at least darker than it actually was, but I wasn’t too upset by it. Overall this book was interesting and it shone light on a series of mental illnesses and even coping methods for said illnesses I’d recommend this to everyone. Though this book gives off the feeling that it’s certainly a hit or miss type of book. Still, give it a try!
792393 More than 1 year ago
Because it was described as Breakfast Club meets Grimm’s Fairy Tales I had a certain idea of what I thought it was going to be but when I actually started reading it – WOW, my mental picture was WAY OFF! In some ways though it did have a faint reminiscent retelling of the aspect of Alice in Wonderland’s story when she learns to face her fears and overcome them. This book will not be what you expect especially after you read the synopsis, just be prepared to be blow away. It’s not very long so I highly recommend tuning out from the world for a bit because it’s so much better if you can just binge your way through it in one sitting. His characters with a fairy tale bent will endear themselves to you and you will find yourself wanting to know how their lives go beyond the pages. Stewart has created a world that feels so real you will become absorbed in this book and begin to forget the world around you as reality and fantasy begin to melt together just like what his characters are going through. There is a touching balance between humor and heartfelt in a novel that at its heart shows the simplicity in finding normalcy in an out of control world. I did appreciate the compassionate and beautiful way the author dealt with mental health issues. I actually envy all new readers to this book because you get to experience the magic of this for the first time. Enjoy the feelings of amazement and wonder that will follow you through this fantastical journey of finding friendship in the place you least expect it.
AnnieChanse More than 1 year ago
Soooo.... I thought this book was going to be a really cool, kickass fantasy novel that focused on re-telling popular fairytales in a whole new way, and I was REAAAAALLLLY looking forward to reading it. I was completely wrong. That was not what this book was at all. And I absolutely loved it. This was a beautifully written story of fear, anxiety, false perceptions, friendship, grief, love, and triumph. It was such a good book. I don't want to go into ANY plot details or mention anything specifically because half the joy of this book comes from not knowing what to expect. That will, of course, desperately shorten my review, but in this instance, I don't care. It is much better for me to stay silent and let others discover this book with completely open minds. I will say that it is one of the better books I have read this year, and I highly recommend it to any and all. I am very much looking forward to checking out more books by this author.
pooled_ink More than 1 year ago
pooled ink Reviews: The cover of this book caught my eye and the story caught me by surprise. I was definitely ready for this to be a paranormal book or something filled with fairytales but it wasn’t. Well, there were lots of fairytales spun throughout but not in the way I’d anticipated. Stewart was simply able to craft the reality in Milly’s mind so well that even I was waiting for the Wolf to pounce. When all is said and done I feel that this was a really interesting look into mental illness. And as I mentioned before, it was rather unexpected. Although it doesn’t take long to figure out that Milly’s world is perhaps built for her alone, it was so vivid that a part of me was never quite sure what to believe. It’s not a very long book and it covers a short period of time but it’s enough to really establish Milly and set her on the path towards hope. COUNTING WOLVES was an unexpected journey through the Dark Wood filled with surprising friendships, emotional revelations, and twisting paths. Read my FULL review on my Wordpress site: Pooled Ink