The Wildwood Chronicles, Book 1: Written by Colin Meloy, Illustrated by Carson Ellis
Prue has an ordinary life in Portland, Oregon. She regularly tends her brother and does the things an ordinary girl would do. So when one day a murder of crows picks up her baby brother and carries him into the Wildwood she decides to take action. She and her friend Curtis follow the crows into the Impassible Wilderness that they have been warned away from. But, when she gets there she finds another world where wolves wear jackets and are a royal guard. The war between the factions is soon tearing Curtis and Prue apart. Who has her brother? How did Prue and Curtis pass the magical barrier into Wildwood? Will they all survive?
The cover of the book could certainly be more enthraling. But, the text is wonderful and keeps readers captured. This book is great for readers of fantasy, adventure, and fairy tales alike.
Review by Jessica Moody, Olympus Jr. High Media Center
Rating: ★★★★✩ (4 stars)
Interest Level: Grades 4-8
Prue Mckeel is a normal seventh-grader living an ordinary life in Portland, Oregon. Then, everything changes in an instant when her baby brother, Mac, is abducted from a playground by a murder of crows. What follows is an incredible, fantastical adventure that takes Prue and her friend, Curtis, into a magical forest called the Impassable Wilderness. The children find themselves in a secret world called Wildwood where animals talk and walk among humans and where an evil witch threatens not only the lives of the children but also the very existence of Wildwood itself.
This story has an original fairy tale element to it with Prue and Curtis encountering such various creatures as an army of talking coyotes, unruly human bandits, gigantic birds and other mystical creatures. However, this book is far from childlike as it contains some gory battle scenes and some words that might require the use of a dictionary for younger readers. This was a fun read though and it’s nice to see a storyline for middle readers that doesn’t involve futuristic scenarios or bloodthirsty vampires! There are also some simple drawings throughout the book that will help the reader envision some of the story line.
I would recommend this book for ages 12 and up.
Review by Lynda H. Wilson, Gourley Elem. Media Center
Rating: ★★★★✩ (4 stars)
Interest Level: Grades 6-10
The Wildwood Chronicles, Book 1
Written by Colin Meloy, Illustrated by Carson Ellis
Balzer & Bray
Release Date: August 30, 2011
ISBN: 9780062024688 (hardcover)