A story the whole family will enjoy, full of endearing characters that will claim a little piece of your heart. Adventureful, Delightful, Memorable!
The Life in The Wood with Joni-Pip is an adventure of jumping in time, changing bad pasts into better futures, discovering that friends and family are truly important and being grateful for the life we have. Joni-Pip and her family move to Berry Bush on the edge of Sherwood Forrest after the bombing of Bath, England in 1942. During the novel World War 2 is ever-present grounding the reader’s thoughts, reminding us that this story, although fiction, does have serious issues at its heart. When Joni-Pip and her family move she thinks the world has ended, what on earth is she going to do at Berry Bush, no friends and no adventure? As a young girl this seems like a horrible outcome bringing with it a future of boredom. Joni-Pip could not possibly imagine a Quission with talking animals was about to teach her about life and bring new friends to her world, providing her with an adventurous journey that would change her life forever.
There are many, many characters in The Life in the Wood with Joni-Pip and one couldn’t possibly comment on them all but you can’t go by without mentioning Ethelred-Ted, Poppy-Plump-Pij and Hetty the Wee. Ethelred-Ted is a German teddy bear, always looking out for the next munch break, very intelligent and a very dear friend to Joni-Pip. Poppy-Plump-Pij, a wood pigeon, speaks funnyful and is more than she appears. Hetty the Wee is a Scottish hedgehog who always has a nice thing to say and is a very devoted friend. These three join Joni-Pip on her Quission and by jumping over the Wall of Time set about making bad pasts into better futures. The four of them have a very close bond and would do anything to help one another out.
Without giving too much away this is a novel that will appeal to children and adults alike. It is a well-written touching and enthralling tale full of self-discovery, with important morals and values hidden throughout. Carrie King has done a superb job of bringing to life the characters and settings with creative dialogue and imaginative descriptions. I very much enjoyed reading this as an adult and will be keeping it safe on my bookshelf to read to my children one day.
There is a picture book of The Life in the Wood with Joni-Pip which is a wonderful introduction to the characters and is full of gorgeous pictures which children will love. The picture book doesn’t give away the novel’s story so absolutely feel that you can read it before the novel. Enjoy the illustrations and discussions it will bring with your children.
A big thank you to Carrie and Martyn for providing me with copies of both books and some lovely illustrations also. It has been a pleasure dealing with you both!
Click here to go to Carrie’s profile on my website where you will find links to the blurb of The Life in the Wood with Joni-Pip, my interview with Carrie, Carrie’s website, her Goodreads profile and a link to purchase The Life in the Wood with Joni-Pip.