In this beautifully written story set in the north woods of Minnesota, four healthy wolf pups—Leader, Sniffer, Runner, and Thinker—are born one spring. And then one final, undersized pup emerges—Runt. Despite his size, Runt manages to keep up with his brothers and sisters and learn the ways of the pack. But he finds it impossible to please his father, the pack's leader, and gradually withdraws from the others. When he ventures into forbidden human territory, Runt at last comes to understand his mistakes and to recognize his own worth. Award-winning author Marion Dane Bauer combines her gift for evocative writing with her in-depth knowledge of wolves to create a compact tale that has the power of an epic. Like the best animal stories, it reflects our own world and shows us what it means to be alive. Afterword.