Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Wolfe Island” as Want to Read:
Wolfe Island
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Wolfe Island

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  77 ratings  ·  25 reviews
For years Kitty Hawke has lived alone on Wolfe Island, witness to the island’s erosion and clinging to the ghosts of her past. Her work as a sculptor and her wolfdog Girl are enough. News of mainland turmoil is as distant as myth until refugees from that world arrive: her granddaughter Cat, and Luis and Alejandra, a brother and sister escaping persecution. When threats fro ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published September 2019 by Picador
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Wolfe Island, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Wolfe Island

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.31  · 
Rating details
 ·  77 ratings  ·  25 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Isolated on Wolfe Island, the only remaining resident, sculptor Kitty Hawke relished her life. She’d had a husband, Hart, daughter Claudie and son Tobe, but they were now on main; Kitty had her wolfdog Girl as she searched for items to use in her sculpting; watched the land being eaten by the sea; sifted through her memories. But one day as a storm arose, a small boat came ashore and aboard was Kitty’s sixteen-year-old granddaughter Cat, plus Josh and siblings, Luis and seven-year-old Alejandra. ...more
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“It was exhausting being around people and noticing them, thinking about them. I felt roughened and coarse now, as if I was rubbing against the grain of Wolfe Island. It used to be that I could forget myself and be, spend hours in the marshes watching the tides and the grasses, birds walking over my feet. I’d been still so long, listening to the unintelligible wind, I was part of it then, and insignificant. I missed that. The writing helped a little.”

Wolfe Island is the second novel by award-win
Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews
Lucy Treloar, the award winning author of Salt Creek, returns to the literary scene with her second impressionistic novel titled Wolfe Island. Set away from Australia on the fictional surrounds of the US marshlands of Chesapeake Bay, Wolfe Island is a dramatic, atmospheric and observant study of humanity in the face of climate disaster. Wolfe Island will haul you in from chapter one, until the endnote.

Kitty Hawke is the central and lone protagonist in Lucy T
Jennifer (JC-S)
‘Slice a life anyway you like, and it’ll tell a different story.’

Kitty Hawke has lived on Wolfe Island (set off the north-eastern coast of the USA) all of her life. She’s the last person still living there as the island becomes eroded, salt affected and less habitable. She was married, to Hart, and had two children Claudie and Tobe. But island life was not for them. Kitty has her wolfdog Girl for company, and her work as a sculptor to keep her busy. Turmoil on the mainland is distant: Kitty is n
Robert Lukins
Sep 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a very special, beautiful, mesmerising thing this is. I expected a lot after Salt Creek, but, boy, this is something else.
Jul 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Astounding in its ability to both touch and unsettle, Wolfe Island is a rain dance beneath the clouds of the Apocalypse.
Kate Downey
Jul 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wolfe Island is a book which will both break your heart and make you want to read it all over again. I love coming across a dystopian setting which is totally believable, nothing too out of the ordinary but deeply unsettling and this book gets that so right. We get to imagine a world submerging slowly as the water level rises inexorably, a world where intolerance of ‘illegals’ echoes events we witness today. Treloar takes this racial discrimination up a notch and yet her depiction of the illegal ...more
Carolyn Mck
Sep 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Lucy Treloar's protagonist, Kitty Hawke (yes, she recognises the significance of the unusual name!) is a middle aged woman who has chosen to live alone on the (fictional) Wolfe Island in the US. The island is succumbing to the ravages of climate change, through rising sea levels and increasing salt deposits. Kitty, the last permanent resident sees it as her responsibility to mark the changes through her notebook and her art - her 'makings' from things she scavenges from her island home. She has ...more
Elise McCune
Sep 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wolfe Island is set in the near future in the US and as the title suggests on an island. Lucy Treloar’s earlier book, Salt Creek was set in Australia and vividly brought to life 19th century Australia so I was looking forward to reading Wolfe Island. I wasn’t disappointed, it is a lovely and relevant book to the times we live in, and redolent with imagery of the landscape and well-drawn characters. I live on an island (Australia) and there is something magical about them but with the ocean on th ...more
Aug 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: australia, c21st, 19review
Wolfe Bay, set in the indeterminate near future, is a bleak book: it foreshadows the annihilation of home due to the rising oceans. However what it also shows is that catastrophe can bring out both the best and worst in people, often to their own surprise.

In a departure from the Australian setting of the award-winning Salt Creek (see my review) the central character of this novel lives in America. Kitty Hawke lives alone on high ground on (fictional*) Wolfe Island in Chesapeake Bay in Maryland,
Jul 24, 2019 rated it liked it
Wolfe Island is a dazzling display of family and what we will and won't do for those who we do and don't love. Kitty is creative and isolated, and yet is pulled around by people, events, and the natural world. A little hard to keep track of (a map would have been a helpful inclusion) it otherwise creates a windswept and salt soaked picture of Kitty's world, with the skill also seen in Salt Creek .
Sally Piper
Oct 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is all kinds of beautiful in writing, characterisation, themes and plot. Set in the near future, it gives a real and disturbing picture of what coastline communities face with rising sea levels and how humanity will respond as more and more lives are disrupted by climate change. It asks questions about what freedom will look like in the future and the lengths people will go to in securing it for those they love. Gripping, unique and unforgettable.
Meg Dunley
Oct 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A superbly written story of a woman who lives a precarious existence on an island that is being taken back by the ocean. Her life must change when others who need her arrive. It is hard not to fall in love with the stubborn and formidable Kitty.
Jessica M
Aug 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing

Wolfe Island is the second literary novel from Australian author Lucy Treloar, set on an estuary that is slowly disappearing in the ocean.

Wolfie Island is part of the Chesapeake Bay estuary off the east coast of the US. The ocean is slowly swallowing it and over the years, one by one, the locals have fled the island for the mainland. But not Kitty Hawke — she’s now the sole survivor of that island, and she’s determined to stay there for as long as possible.

But when four y
Sep 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
In her second novel, Australian author, Lucy Treloar has created a dystopian world in which the sun barely shines, plants do not grow and the land is being swamped by the sea. People are "on the run" to freedom and a better life in the north. The story is narrated by reclusive artist Kitty Hawke who creates "makings" from found objects that wash up on the disappearing Wolfe Island that is her home. With lyrical prose Treloar creates this wild and beautiful place where Kitty lives alone with her ...more
Sep 25, 2019 added it
I did not finish the novel and, obviously, am at odds with so many of the emerging reviews. For the nearly 300 pages I read, I felt moved by the meticulously drawn landscape of the Chesapeake Bay region of America, particularly by the fictitious Wolfe Island, which had already been abandoned by all except one idiosyncratic resident, Kitty Hawke. As the waters continued to engulf it in a climate change scenario, Kitty steadfastly remained. She was surprisingly joined by her estranged granddaughte ...more
Jacki (Julia Flyte)
Sep 08, 2019 rated it liked it
This is set in the near future: rising sea levels are wiping out coastal settlements. Kitty is the last resident on Wolfe Island, a small island in the Chesapeake Bay (off Maryland/Virginia). She visits the mainland occasionally to stock up on supplies but is otherwise removed from the depressed economic situation and the persecution of Latino immigrants. Until one day her teenage granddaughter (whom she barely knows) arrives at her doorstep with her boyfriend and two "runners", seeking a safe h ...more
Anne Fenn
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Maybe I should indicate this novel could be crime fiction or speculative fiction. After reading Daughter of Bad Times recently there’s a lot of nasty things ahead in the near future, in many parts of the world. The worst and best points of how we might behave are based on our treatment of the other, especially refugees from climate change. This novel is written by an Australian but set in the Chesapeake Bay area of the US, where people’s lives have been changed by too much or too little water.
Tricia Greig
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book more than I expected but being a little Dystopian I knew it was “my bag baby”
I see myself In this character, her island, her art, her dog - but I wonder if I would do what she did to help the runners who come to her island. I really hope I
Would - but that also frightens me.
I love this aspect of books that make me check who I think I am or would/could be.

I wish I had made it out to hear the author talk at Stirling library last night- but I was cold and tired after a 10 hr w
Gayle Parker
Oct 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is one of those books that lives in your head and doesn’t allow you to immediately start reading another
The story of Kitty Hawke and her relationships with her family and her Island in Chesapeake Bay is powerful in its lyrical description of landscapes and emotion
The characters are richly sketched and engaging
It is set against a background of climate change and social upheaval as people move north to escape rising sea levels
Despite this the ties of love of family and land triumph over the
April  Greenlaw Chang
There was plenty to admire in this book: lyrical and observant prose, the strong women driving the narrative, the subtexts of climate change, refugees, inequality and fear - balanced by resilience and renewal.
I like to think I'm a patient reader yet I found myself skimming (a crime, I know) to keep up the momentum. Instead being swept along I kept getting snagged by irritants; the wolfdog, the gas guzzler, hot water and fast food. I didn't love it but I'm sure others will.
Margot Wood
Sep 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Haunting. Measured. Beautifully written with a searing edge and an underlying sense of menace, melancholy and a shifting of times as inexorable as the rising tides. Yet also a sense of hope through these women - fierce, creative, independent, strong. Highly recommended.
Carol Jones
Oct 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Review to come.
Wendy Bridges
Sep 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Magnificent! Beautifully written and incredibly moving.
Christine Mooney
Sep 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Didn't love it.
rated it it was amazing
Oct 01, 2019
rated it really liked it
Sep 28, 2019
Jade Maree
rated it liked it
Oct 11, 2019
Jen Gilbert
rated it liked it
Oct 05, 2019
Sally O/hara
rated it really liked it
Sep 23, 2019
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
Lucy Treloar was born in Malaysia and educated in Melbourne, England and Sweden. A graduate of the University of Melbourne and RMIT, Lucy is a writer and editor and has plied her trades both in Australia and in Cambodia, where she lived for a number of years.

Her short fiction has appeared in Sleepers, Overland, Seizure, and Best Australian Stories 2013 and her non fiction in The Age, Meanjin, Wom
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »