Over the Woodward Wall 💫 Spoiler Free Review 🎄 Blogmas Day 11

Title: Over the Woodward Wall
Author: A. Deborah Baker (AKA Seanan McGuire)
Series: The Up-and-Under
Genre: MG Fantasy
Publication Date: October 6th, 2020
Pages: 203
Publishers: TorDotCom

4 Stars

Goodreads Synopsis

If you trust her you’ll never make it home…
Avery is an exceptional child. Everything he does is precise, from the way he washes his face in the morning, to the way he completes his homework – without complaint, without fuss, without prompt.

Zib is also an exceptional child, because all children are, in their own way. But where everything Avery does and is can be measured, nothing Zib does can possibly be predicted, except for the fact that she can always be relied upon to be unpredictable.

They live on the same street.
They live in different worlds.

On an unplanned detour from home to school one morning, Avery and Zib find themselves climbing over a stone wall into the Up and Under – an impossible land filled with mystery, adventure and the strangest creatures.

And they must find themselves and each other if they are to also find their way out and back to their own lives.”

So, I loved the Wayward Children‘s series and while I did enjoy this one it did not live up to my expectations. Wayward Children was interesting, thrilling, mysterious & so freaking unique and I just loved it. Over the Woodward Wall just didn’t quite hit that mark. It’s still 4 stars but definitely not what I expect from Seanan McGuire.

I think my main issue was I couldn’t connect with the characters. I don’t know if thats a me issue, because its middle grade or what but I just felt no connection with them. I did really enjoy the Crow Girl and I think I enjoyed her more than the 2 main characters actually. So that was annoying. I’m sorry to keep comparing this to Wayward Children but I was so invested in this characters from the very start, so to feel such a disconnect with these characters was disappointing.

This book gave me Alice in Wonderland & Wizard of Oz vibes, both of which I enjoy the story of but they aren’t my favourites. Especially the similarities with Alice in Wonderland where absolutely nothing makes sense and the author just did things because she can and not because there is a reason. I’m just not a huge fan of that aspect. I like to learn and understand things about the world. So while this world was unique and king of interesting it also frustrated me that nothing much made sense.

I did find the story unpredictable, action packed and generally engaging. So that is the main reason for my higher rating. I enjoyed the overall experience but there were a few things that annoyed me a little. And again, I had high expectations based on what I have previously read by Seanan McGuire (both Wayward Children & Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day) and this one just didn’t quite live up to it in my opinion!

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