Thursday, February 21, 2013

Middle-Grade Review: Wildwood

Well, it took me many months, but I finally finished listening to the middle-grade audio book Wildwood by Colin Meloy. It’s an intricate fantasy filled with talking animals, bandits, mystics, and even an evil queen-wannabe.

Young Prue McKeel has a very ordinary life, living with her parents and little brother, Mac, in Portland. Then, one day when Prue is out with her brother, Mac is stolen right out of his wagon by a group of crows and carried into the tangled forest along the edge of the city. Prue takes off into the woods with her friend, Curtis, to find her baby brother, but the pair encounter far more than they could have imagined.

They come across coyote soldiers and animal constables, but finding Mac proves difficult. It turns out there is a whole secret world in the forest that the residents call Wildwood. That world is in turmoil, balanced on the precipice of a major war between forces of good and evil, and Prue and Curtis find themselves – and Mac – in the middle of the conflict.

Wildwood is a classic fantasy tale with its young protagonists at the center of an epic battle between good and evil, fighting not only for their own lives and freedom but for the liberty of all of Wildwood. Author Colin Meloy, lead singer of the Decemberists, has created an original and whimsical world. The audio book was very well done and enjoyable, but I suspect the book is also excellent, accompanied by illustrations by award-winning artist Carson Ellis.

HarperCollins Audio


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