I enjoyed every bit of this book!
June is a fourteen year old girl who is kind of on the quirky side. She feels like she doesn’t belong to her time and imagines she’s in the middle ages, she wears medieval boots given to her by her uncle Finn. She also has talent for visual art, but she doesn’t quite believe it.
Finn is dying from AIDS when the virus was new and little was known about it. He’s a famous New York artist, and before he dies he wishes to paint a portrait of his nieces, June and Greta. Greta is a sixteen year old who is advanced a grade because she is too smart for her own good, and musically talented. But she’s as mean as a snake to June and takes every opportunity to hurt her sister she can get.
Toby is Finn’s boyfriend of nine years who has been hidden away from the sisters by their mother (Finn’s sister) and father because they don’t know him, and don’t wish to get to know him. Toby is also has AIDS and forms a friendship with June after her beloved uncle Finn passes away from the disease. This is not easy for June, because she believed she was the only person close to Finn.
I can relate with Tell the Wolves I’m Home, especially with the character June. I grew up the odd middle child with a popular, smart older sister who was (and is) as mean as a snake. In Greta’s case, it turns out she has a heart. My sister? Not so much, the older she gets the crueler she gets. I make my living as a visual artist, I have a brother who is gay and has been with his partner for fourteen years. I love his partner as much as any brother and I cannot imagine him being hidden away and never knowing him.
How very sad that would be.
This is a very touching, coming of age book.