The Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood: Book Review

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Cover of The Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood

4.5 Stars

I seriously did not think I could love an audiobook performance more than I love Katherine Kellgren’s narration of the Bloody Jack series by L. A. Meyer. And then she narrated The Mysterious Howling. Holy cow. I am in awe of Ms. Kellgren’s talent! Old men, teen girls, simpering married women, wolfish children howling at the moon, she went at all of them with gusto and I loved every minute of it!

Miss Penelope Lumley has just graduated from the Swanburne Academy for Poor Bright Females. She has no family but her headmistress encourages her to apply for a position as governess to three children at Ashton Place. She seems perfect for the job since she is (obviously) a bright student and (not so obviously) an animal lover, a trait specifically requested of job-seekers in the advertisement. Miss Lumley sets off for her interview, finds herself hired on the spot, and soon learns that the three children given to her care were found in the woods within the past week. They have apparently been raised by wolves and don’t speak a word of English between them. But a Swanburne girl is more than a match for any task and Penelope sets about teaching them a love for poetry, phrases of polite conversation, and the fine art of ignoring irrepressible squirrels.

I loved these characters. Miss Lumley simply doesn’t see that she might have an impossible job before her. She has been hired to teach these children and teach them she will. When Lady Ashton gives her ever more Herculean tasks to accomplish, she simply tackles them the best way that she knows how. She genuinely cares for the children and has their best interests always at heart. The children, Alexander, Beowulf, and Cassiopeia, are little scene-stealers. They are remarkably intelligent, good sports, and always up for a bit of fun and new experiences. They make huge strides and will try anything for Miss Lumley.

But there are sinister doings afoot. Someone is attempting to undermine Miss Lumley and set the children up for failure. Penelope is vaguely aware of it but she has no idea who this mysterious someone might be. The immediate storyline is resolved but the end of the story left me with more questions than answers and hungry to download the next book.

I can’t recommend this audiobook highly enough. Young (or young at heart) readers should enjoy this immensely.

Listen to an excerpt.

Find author Maryrose Wood on her website, her blog, and Twitter.

Buy The Mysterious Howling at

I have an affiliate relationship with Malaprop’s, my local independent bookstore located in beautiful downtown Asheville, NC; and Better World Books. I will receive a small commission at no cost to you if you purchase books through links on my site. My opinions are completely my own.

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