Reviews provided by Syndetics
School Library Journal Review
Gr 4-7-Prue McKeel knows she must unite the two engineers to bring back the automaton Prince Alexei, but she is not sure why the Council Tree gave this order. With one maker found, Prue searches for the second, while Elsie and Rachel work to free their friends from the titans of industry. Meanwhile, Curtis is trying to keep the Wildwood Bandit name thriving, even though it is just him and Septimus. With her return to South Wood, Prue expects to see a better world, not one controlled by the Synod, a group that worships the Blighted Tree. When Wildwood and all of the Impassable Wilderness is threatened by the return of the Dowager Governess, Prue must rescue the bandits, find the makers, and restore Alexie, all while trying to keep the protective boundary intact. Prue and her friends learn the true meaning of sacrifice and the power of forgiveness. With smart dialogue and excellent world-building, Meloy, as author and narrator, develops each character's personality and gives dimension and depth to his words. The author shows the struggle of revolution and the uncertainty that occurs in the early stages of remaking a world, drawing from the violence of the French and Russian Revolutions as well as providing terrific fantasy elements. This latest installment (after Under Wildwood) is an excellent addition to the series.-Sarah Flood, Breckinridge County Public Library, Hardinsburg, KY (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
The third tome in the Wildwood Chronicles continues the quirky adventures of 12-year-old Prue as she reenters the Wood to find that the postrevolution world she helped create isn't going especially smoothly. In fact, she finds herself involved with a plot to resurrect Alexei, the automaton prince, who is foretold to bring peace to the land. But there is another resurrection in progress, too: naive teenager Zita is gathering the materials to bring back the evil Alexandra. A third story line the most purely enjoyable involves the Unadoptables as they join up with a band of beatnik saboteurs intent on raiding the Titan Tower, where an important hostage is being held. Meloy is the Wes Anderson of authors (characters with names like Ambrose Pupkin are many), and he nails the tone of this gentle, but not inconsequential, adventure; though filled with few genuine surprises, it is a warm, comforting read, and its massive page count allows readers to further lose themselves in the enchanting stroll through some very unusual woods. Final illustrations (including color plates) not seen. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: This best-selling series continues to get a major publisher push: an author-illustrator tour, launch events, limited-edition art prints, stickers, videos, playlists, you name it.--Kraus, Daniel Copyright 2010 Booklist
Horn Book Review
Separated, Prue (accompanied by talking bear Esben), bandit-in-training Curtis, and Curtis's sisters fight multiple threats to Wildwood. An enormous cast of characters--human, animal, and supernatural, all quirky as ever--and the scope of the kids' respective quests make this trilogy-ender harder to follow than previous volumes, but witty descriptive language and warm black-and-white illustrations invite readers into this enchanting forest world. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Kirkus Book Review
Drawing from wildly original tropes and paradigms and populated by a wide cast of characters old and new, this portrait of a magical world just outside mundane reality (here represented by Portland, Ore.) brings the trilogy to a satisfying conclusion. The opening strikes a somber note as a teenage girl calls up a restless spirit then lightens, turning to Prue and her quest: bringing together toymakers Carol and Esben to rebuild their remarkable mechanical boy. But first, Rachel, Elsie and the valiant Unadoptables must rescue Carol and Martha from the Titan tower, a fiendishly complicated task that depends on the now highly unstable Joffrey Unthank and the Chapeaux Noirs, an "anarcho-syndicalist" collective. Dramatic shifts in tone and mood--by turns politically astute and subversively witty, elegiac, droll and philosophical--are par for the course, while narrative style ranges from intimate to intergalactically distant. These idiosyncrasies make it just about impossible to identify the prospective audience by age. Never mind. Series fans know what awaits, and new readers will quickly determine if it's for them. Interwoven with Meloy's compellingly visual word portraits, Ellis' abundant illustrations, including color plates, again showcase her subtle blend of folk-art simplicity and eldritch imagery. Like filmmaker Terry Gilliam, Meloy gives his antic imagination full rein to produce work that, if occasionally uneven, is brilliantly sui generis. (Fantasy. 10 up)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.