by Colin Meloy
When her baby brother is kidnapped by crows, Prue McKeel begins an adventure that will take her and her friend Curtis way beyond her hometown and deep into the Impassable Wilderness. There they uncover a secret world in the midst of violent upheaval, a world full of warring creatures, peace-loving mystics and powerful figures with the darkest intentions. What begins as a rescue mission becomes something much bigger as the two friends find themselves entwined in a struggle for the very freedom of this wilderness. A wilderness the locals call Wildwood.
I wanted to love this book. In the beginning, I liked it very much. It has a folksy sort-of feel in the storytelling. It has a kidnapped brother, and an intrepid sister, out to recover him... it has a dark, mysterious wilderness that captivates Prue and readers alike.
As I continued reading, though, the story began to lag for me. I'm not sure exactly why. Partially, I think, because I personally do not particularly like books where main characters are talking animals. It just doesn't work for me and there were definitely some important characters here who were of the non-human variety. Also, this delved a lot into politics and (unlike in M.W. Turner's books which are full of political intrigue that I couldn't help but be fascinated by...) it just became too much.
I think that there were a lot of factors that just added up to not quite a win here for me. I think maybe if the book had been a little shorter, not quite so complicated, I might have persevered and possibly even have enjoyed my reading experience, but in the end, I really only enjoyed the first third of this book.