Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

Willow Wildthing and the Dragon’s Egg by Gill Lewis & illustrated by Rebecca Bagley

While playing with her little brother and the amazing newt they’ve discovered in their garden, Willow Wildthing receives an important message from her friends in the Wilderness. They’re in trouble and they need her help. Venturing into a world that is tangled, untamed and full of extraordinary surprises, Willow goes on an adventure to save their camp, steal a dragon’s egg and take advice from a witch. With a definite “Swallows and Amazons” feel, rival groups of children must either outwit each other or work together to protect the Wilderness they all love so much.

The children are guardians of the forest and do what they can to look after the animals around them. Willow returns home to encourage her family to think about animal habitats and how they decide to landscape their garden. What if there was no room for wildlife? What if everyone destroyed animal homes? Together, they make sure that their garden is safe for their new friend, the newt, and any other animals who might want to call it home.

This is a fantastic book for encouraging children to be a little bit wild and look after the natural environment around them. The line that there are “little pockets of wilderness everywhere if you just look for them” is powerful and encourages all children to take responsibility for our world.

This story is incredibly appealing for young readers. With a gorgeous orange and grey colour scheme, the friendly illustrations draw children right into the adventure.

Children need to get muddy and tangled as they explore the world around them. Read more about this in my blog post: Why a Muddy Day is a Good Day.

Willow Wildthing and the Dragon’s Egg is the second book in this fun series with a third due in January 2021.

Thank you to Oxford University Press Children’s Books for this lovely book!

Click on the covers below to find out more or purchase on-line from Amazon.

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