Street Shadows


Two coyote friends must learn how to survive when human development threatens their homes.

Pica and Scruff, two young coyotes, are both born in the heart of a large city. Pica has a loving family and lives on a peaceful golf course. Scruff was orphaned at birth and adopted by a mysterious older coyote named Jagger.

Despite their differences, Pica and Scruff meet and become friends. Their friendship is put to the test, however, when Scruff learns that Pica’s family may have been involved in the death of his own family. The fragile peace is further disrupted when construction begins, demolishing the place where Scruff and Jagger live. And then Scruff discovers that there is a lot he doesn’t know about Jagger, the only parent he’s ever known. Scruff must decide whom to trust in order to survive and find a new place to call home.


CCBC’s Best Books for Kids and Teens, Starred Selection (Spring 2020)


In Claire Gilchrist's richly imagined debut novel, two young coyotes, Pica and Scruff, live with their packs in a large city. As humans encroach on dwindling resources, the two coyote packs must do everything they can to survive. Gilchrist shows in page-turning detail the perils urban wildlife faces as we expand into their homes. Readers will find themselves cheering for Pica and Scruff as they search for home and forge an unlikely friendship. A must-read for fans of Pax, The One and Only Ivan, and The Crickets in Times Square.

Bobbie Pyron, author of Stay, A Pup Called Trouble, and A Dog’s Way Home

I totally devoured Street Shadows! Thank you so much for sending it my way. It really feels like an instant classic, and I loved getting to know more about coyotes even as I found myself immersed in Pica’s and Scruff’s journey. It’s a really terrific achievement.

Eliot Schrefer, National Book Award nominated author

Fans of Katherine Applegate's The One and Only Ivan will greatly enjoy this book, as will all animal lovers. Highly Recommended.

CM Magazine

About the Author

Claire Gilchrist

Posted by Kendra on October 9, 2018
Claire Gilchrist photo

Claire Gilchrist

Claire Gilchrist is an author and middle school teacher. She loves all canids, and has done extensive research on urban coyotes as well as worked as an educator for the Co-Existing with Coyotes Program in Vancouver, B.C. She currently splits her time between White Salmon, Washington, and Victoria, B.C.