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The Wolves of La Louvière

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  60 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Belgium, 1940. The German army is spreading across Europe, and tiny Belgium is conquered in 18 days. During the four long years of the Nazi occupation, the women of La Louvière have to figure out some way to stay alive, to live their lives, and to keep up hope. Their world is drawn through teenage Marcelle's journal: What does she do? How do her family members endure? Whic ...more
ebook, 201 pages
Published August 15th 2018 by Europe Comics
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Average rating 3.63  · 
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Jul 22, 2019 rated it liked it
March 24, 1944. Time is a relative notion: minutes can feel like centuries when you're being bombed. Space is also relative: there's 18 kilometers between Nivelles and La Louviere. In wartime, it took 24 hours for the news to reach me.

La Louviere, Belgium, 1940.

This is the story of a Belgian family, during the four long years of the Nazi occupation. This part-real and part-fiction story is filled with many instances of hope, survival and a strong will to live.

The graphic illustrations are simple
Lady Clementina ffinch-ffarowmore
My thanks to NetGalley and Europe Comics for a review copy of this one.

This is a World-War-II themed graphic novel which is based on a true story (which I only realised later) of the author’s own family, and the diary of young Marcelle Balthazar who is fifteen at the time Poland is conquered and the war begins. In the book we see side-by-side, two storylines, one of the Balthazar family which comprises M. and Mme. Balthazar and their five children of whom Marcelle is the oldest, all studying at
Aug 10, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with a copy of this graphic novel in exchange for an honest review. 

This is the story of a family living in Belgium during the second World War. It's the story of the struggles they had to face during these terrible and difficult times. I liked the illustrations and a lot of the themes that were dealt with. Sometimes the story was a bit slow and I felt like some scenes weren't really able to capture my attention. I mostly appreciated the teacher's storyli
Disclaimer: ARC via Netgalley

The author’s note for this graphic novel says that it is a fictional story based on true facts and that some people are real, some note, some names have been changed. The note is hardly needed for the story, for if you know anything about civilian life in the second World War, this story does have the ring of truth.

The story follows a teen aged girl, Marcelle, her family as well as a young teacher, Marguerite, who becomes a subversive in the fight against the Nazis
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was drawn to this comic book based on it's subject matter; the format of a graphic novel lends itself to this presentation. After a visit to Bruges late last year I got hold of Bastion Bruges: Occupied Bruges in the First World War and subsequently read it about the city's struggles against occupation so close to the Western Front. As with that more academic account "The Wolves of La Louviere looks at the civilian people during a time of German occupation from the build up to war and subsequen ...more
Literary Redhead
“The Wolves of La Louvière” by Flore Balthazar captivated me with its compelling treatment of such a serious topic in a graphic novel format.

The story begins in Belgium, 1940. The German army is spreading across Europe, and tiny Belgium is conquered in just 18 days. During four long years of Nazi occupation, the villagers of La Louvière try to survive. Their world is poignantly captured in teenage character Marcelle’s journal. A unique account of WWII based on one family’s true experience. High
Ije the Devourer of Books
Aug 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent graphic novel about a Belgian family who live through the Second World War and the Nazi occupation of Belgium. The Wolves of La Louviere is based on a true story about a family of five children who live through the war. It shows how their day to day life changes and how they adapt to the deprivations of war while still trying to maintain family life. The story also portrays the lives of other people in the small town and this includes both Nazi sympathisers and the Belgian r ...more
Jan 08, 2019 rated it liked it
The Wolves of La Louvière seemed very interesting, since we do need more war comics that aren't really about the fighting and instead about the humane side, the loss and all. This comic is also about girls and them fighting the oppression in Belgium. Some of the women work more, some attend resistance forces and some do what they do the best, keep their families safe. I like this approach and how we have these different people all just trying to survive and do their best. The info pages at the b ...more
Aug 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a fictionalized account of a real war, or rather it is a graphic novel based on a real war, and real people, as the cartoonist imagines it happened, based on a real girls diary.

Set in Belgium, just before, and just after World War II, this story follows the every day lives of the Balthazar family. Despite the war, despite everything going on around them, when Belgium is invaded, and occupied by Nazis, life goes on. The children go to school. People work. And people spy and resist.

The wo
Aug 19, 2018 rated it liked it
The Wolves of La Louviere*
3.5 starts

The Wolves of La Louviere is a graphic novel which tackles several heavy themes all unfolding during the wretchedness of WWII. It discusses courage, sabotage, equality between the sexes, ethics, patriotism, and humanity. (Not all Germans are Nazi's)

I enjoyed the characters, although sometimes had difficulty telling them apart. It soon became apparent that the story focuses around two female characters. That of Marcelle and Marguerite. I enjoyed the outtakes
Excellent graphic novel. It is touching, hopeful, sad and everything inbetween. And most of all, it feels real.

A lot of the little things went straight to my heart, and brought a smile on my face. The mentioning of the "Quick and Flupke" comics being one of them. I also appreciated the multilingual aspect of the story, yes, the bulk of it was translated into English, but still enough French, German and Russian remained.

This story touched me more than I can convey here, being Belgian and having f
Jan 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review originally posted on my blog, Mad Book Love.

While I've long been interested in reading more graphic novels, I haven't found any that appealed (outside of The Walking Dead, which I really enjoy), until now. Historical fiction in this format really works for me. And calling it historical fiction is a bit of a stretch because the story is based on a real family, and much of what takes place actually happened. However, because names were changed and some adjustments made, historical fict
Nusrat Mahmood
Sep 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018

** I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. **

March 24, 1944. 

Time is a relative notion: minutes can feel like centuries when you're being bombed. Space is also relative: there's 18 kilometers between Nivelles and La Louviere. In wartime, it took 24 hours for the news to reach me.

Some books are there to hold a position near your heart and remind you of it with every beating of your heart. The wolves of La Louviere is
Sep 25, 2018 rated it it was ok
I received a copy of this book via NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The Wolves of La Louvière tells the story of German occupation in Belgium.
First about the art: I have to admit, I didn't care much for it, it was done in a rather simple style, but somehow it also fitted the storyline and the muted colors felt appropriate for a time where you couldn't live to the fullest, but had to keep your head down in order to survive. Still, I would have liked reading it better
Kamis Gardner
Aug 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book via NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I always enjoy reading books dealing with WWII, if enjoy is really even the right word. It's a period of history that I'm very drawn to, and try to learn as much as I can about, because it's such an important part of history. I don't know that there is any other period in history that has had such an impact on the world as this one has, and I hope that stories of the war continue to be published, so t
Aug 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Before beginning this review, I must disclose that I was given an online version of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This graphic novel follows the lives of many women as they struggle and come to terms with German Occupation during the course of the Second World War. It not only shows the horrors of war that come with the destruction of the environment around you and the loss of loved ones, but also the beautiful in the everyda
Wayne McCoy
Aug 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
'The Wolves of La Louviere' by Balthazar Flore is a biographical graphic novel that follows a family in Belgium as they experience the war.

In 1940, the Nazis occupied Belgium in 18 days. In the town of La Louviere, life seems to carry on, but eventually there are noticeable signs. Father goes off to war, food is scarce, and the town has soldiers occupying. A teacher at the school, who seems to be ok with the Nazi occupation, has her own secrets to keep.

The story and art are so charming that it
Aug 11, 2018 rated it liked it
An interesting read, concentrating as it does on civilians with some small link to the Resistance in wartime Nazi-occupied Belgium. I did wonder if there were not too many narrative forms – the panels and texts we get, the diary entries, the chapter-heading talk of metaphorical wolves, samples of radio news, and so on – but on the whole the piece held together just enough. It is a little too bitty, though, to be fully satisfying – however much the author protests in prologue to have changed fict ...more
Tori (alwaysbookphoenix) Kisamore
I received this from NetGalley and the publisher as an eARC in exchange for my honest review and opinion.

WOW. This was beautiful. I honestly do not know where to even begin. The artwork and color pallet was amazing. The story was realistic and filled with passion and emotion. I loved the changing of the fonts between letters, journals, and dialogue. But you know what really hit this home for me? The end of this graphic novel has a full story of what really happened in Belgium. And it was just t
Elizabeth Grieve
Sep 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
A charmingly illustrated graphic novel, about a Belgian family during WW2, particularly from the teenage girl Marcelle who keeps a journal. It is based on a true story (that of the author's family) and deals with the German occupation of that time and how the locals tried to continue their everyday lives despite that. The wolves of the title are of course the Nazis.
The illustrations are lovely, with a muted palette of colours that fits the period perfectly. The story is strictly for adults thou
Annette Jordan
A beautifully illustrated account , largely based on real life people and events, that documents events of the second world war through the diaries of a teenage girl. Marcelle describes both the events of the war at large as well as how that impacts on conditions closer to home. It was interesting to see a story set in Belgium, in fact it is the first I've found. I particularly liked the focus on the day to day life of the townsfolk under the Occupation forces.
I read and reviewed an ARC courtesy
Aug 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
A beautifully done account of life during Occupied France. Wasn't always the easiest to keep track of characters and the action at times as things jumped around occasionally, but all the same, this was a fantastic look at what life was like under the Germans. The wolves metaphor for the Germans and the ongoing state of the war was just perfect and I liked having the one family at the centre of the action, interwoven with the stories of a few others. The art was just stunning too.

Thank you Netgal
Katya Kazbek
Sep 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: war, belgium
It's a sweet comic on a difficult subject matter but with not enough impact. I was left wishing it was about the teacher instead. Not to downplay anyone's experience, but with the wealth of suffering to come out of WWII, and the breadth of the suffering's documentation in literature and comics, this seemed small potatoes. A touching story, but seemingly dictated more by the proximity of the subjects to the author, than by its weight. Nonetheless, I did enjoy it, the style, and the feminist theme ...more
Aug 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc
ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I found the story line very difficult to follow because of how much it jumped around. Some of the font choice also didn't work for me because it was a little difficult to actually read. Overall this just didn't really work for me.
Full review to come!
This historical graphic novel of the Nazi occupation of Belgium is very much based on the author's own family history. It's a story of survival and resistance, of trying to find normalcy in times of great hardship and violence. I did enjoy this, and appreciated the view of normal people trying to survive during a war, trying to cobble together some semblance of normal.

The story does lose a star because I had some trouble differentiating the characters. Many of them looked very similar.

Review cop
Aug 10, 2018 rated it liked it
This is an interesting story in that it depicts the struggles and battles faced by women during the war. However, I found the telling of the story disjointed and difficult to follow. I often found myself not knowing who was who and there is very little transition between the scenes.

I found myself skimming it towards the end as I'd lost track of what was going on. Some parts of the story are very powerful and I feel like it has potential but as it is, it is not for me.
J.D. DeHart
Aug 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
History and fiction collide in a graphic novel for mature readers. Proof that the comic book can do many things.
Sep 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An excellent graphic novel on the struggles of ordinary Belgians during World War II. The story follows a family from the beginning of the war until the liberation of Belgium by the Allies. Several of the characters are teenagers, giving young adult readers a chance to imagine what everyday life would have been like in occupied Europe.

The book is not for young children. There is a sex scene, a torture scene, an abortion, and an execution in this novel. This book would be most appropriate for hi
Oct 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
At times hard to comprehend, this journal in graphic novel format recounts the stories of Marcelle Balthazar’s family, and Marguerite Bevoets fight during the Belgium occupation of WW2. Because it is journal format, days, sometimes weeks or years are skipped in the story. It give you insight into what it was like to have a large family struggle in times of war. Education was scarce, food was scarce, but family was plenty. Blended in to this story is that of Margurite whose time as a newspaper pe ...more
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