Garry Marvin's entry in Reaktion's Animal series, each of which explores the historical significance of a particular creature, addresses the big bad wolf. Though it wasn't always so. Early hunter-gatherer societies revered the wolf. But with the domesticization of livestock, Canis lupus became a feared adversary. Marvin traces the animal's impact on human society and concludes with the wolf's recent reemergence as a totem of the swiftly-disappearing wilderness.

April 21: " 'Pull' includes 'invitations to tea' at which one hears smiling reminders that a better life is available to people who stop talking about massacres..."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…