This international bestseller that changed the way we look at wolves “opens new horizons in understanding animal nature and intelligence” (Newsday).
In 1948, Farley Mowat landed in the far north of Manitoba, Canada, a young biologist sent to investigate the region’s dwindling population of caribou. Many people thought that the caribous’ conspicuous decline had been caused by the tundra’s most notorious predator: the wolf. Alone among the howling canine packs, Mowat expected to find the bloodthirsty beasts of popular conception. Instead, over the course of a summer spent observing the powerful animals, Mowat discovered an animal species with a remarkable capacity for loyalty, virtue, and playfulness.
Praised for its humor and engrossing narrative, Never Cry Wolf describes a group of wolves whose interactions and behaviors seem strikingly similar to our own. Mowat humanizes these animals that have long been demonized, turning the widespread narrative of the “savage wolf” on its head and inspiring many governments to enact protective legislation for the North’s most mysterious creature.
“An engaging book . . . written with grace and skill . . . Fascinating.” —The New York Times
“Never Cry Wolf is a pioneering book in restoring the good name of that maligned creature. . . . Mowat is so enjoyable to read.” —The Wall Street Journal
“Mowat’s writing mixes self-deprecating humor, outrage over man’s understanding and misuse of the wilds, and a sense of self-discovery.” —Time
“By writing Never Cry Wolf, Mowat almost single-handedly reversed the public’s image of the wolf, from feared vermin to romantic symbol of the wilderness.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review
“Mowat’s writing is lean, evocative, haunting. And beneath his ‘achromatic landscapes,’ he uncovers surprise, complexity, magnificence.” —The Christian Science Monitor
“Opens new horizons in understanding animal nature and intelligence, cuts to ribbons the legendary stereotype of the wolf, and leavens sentiment with laughter.” —Newsday
Farley McGill Mowat (1921–2014) was born in Belleville, Ontario. The author of more than forty books, he was a popular and distinguished naturalist and conservationist whose internationally acclaimed novels, books for young readers, and memoirs have been translated into fifty-two languages and have sold more than seventeen million copies. Mowat’s oeuvre includes People of the Deer; Lost in the Barrens, a recipient of Canada’s Governor General’s Award; The Boat Who Wouldn’t Float; A Whale for the Killing; The Snow Walker; and Virguga: The Passion of Dian Fossy.
Mowat is most widely known for his 1963 book Never Cry Wolf, which recounts his adventures as a biologist on a solo mission in 1946 to study Arctic wolves in the Keewatin Barren Lands in northern Manitoba. The book is credited with changing the stereotypically negative perception of wolves as vicious killers. New York Times op-ed columnist Nicholas D. Kristof named Mowat’s The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be, first published in 1957, one of the best children’s books of all time.
Mowat served in World War II from 1940 to 1945, entering the army as a private and emerging with the rank of captain. He began writing professionally in 1949 after spending two years in the Arctic. He was an inveterate traveler with a passion for remote places and peoples.
Mowat was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1981. In 2002 the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society named a ship for him in recognition of his activism against the whaling industry.