Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Into the Wild

I just finished reading Into the Wild . What a creative, fun, and well-written book! Just looking at the other author raves all over the cover got me excited about it and the premise is just awesome. This is the most innovative twist on fairy tales I've seen in a long time.

Into the Wild (Razorbill, 7/07), by Sarah Beth Durst.

Julie is a modern girl who doesn't quite fit in at school. Mainly this is because her modern school world and her world at home are so very different. See, Julie's mom is Rapunzel and their personal lives are overrun with all sorts of fairy tale characters. Puss n Boots is Julie's adopted brother. Snow's Seven come over for dinner all the time and they're so sexist! Cindy is the worst driver ever and she always wants to pick Julie up at school.

To make matters worse, THE WILD lives under Julie's bed and she is its keeper. The Wild is a magical force that is manifest in a thick, enchanted forest, now shrunk down to a pile of hungry vines living under Julie's bed. If The Wild gets ahold of Julie's shoe, it turns it into something else. Same with anything else it grabs. Julie is responsible for keeping The Wild locked up and never talking about it to anyone.

One night, someone makes a special wish at Granny's Wishing Well Motel and The Wild becomes powerful once again. Almost instantly, there is a huge, primeaval forest growing in the middle of town, sucking in anything that gets near it. All of the fairy tale characters are forced to back to their stories, re-enacting them over and over, in their own kind of prison. Only Julie understands enough about the world and the ways of The Wild to rescue her family and put The Wild back in its place. Julie doesn't belong to a story - yet - so she can manipulate what happens, as long as she plays by The Wild's rules.

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