84. Wildspark by Vashti Hardy

I enjoyed Vashti’s book ‘Brightstorm’ so much that when I found this in Waterstones, I knew I had to buy it – because we all know how little impulse control I have!!!

Synopsis (as taken from Amazon) is as follows:

A year after the death of her older brother, Prue Haywood’s family is still shattered with grief. But everything changes when a stranger arrives at the farm.

A new, incredible technology has been discovered in the city of Medlock, where a secretive guild of inventors have developed a way to capture spirits of the dead in animal-like machines.

Prue knows that the “Ghost Guild” might hold the key to bringing her brother back, so she seizes the stranger’s offer to join as an apprentice. But to find her brother, she needs to find a way to get the ghost machine to remember the people they used to be.

Yet if Prue succeeds, all of society could come apart…

Ability to read – It was easy to get into this book as it is so imaginative and adventurous. The language was simple and easy to follow and I was able to dive in and out of the book with little difficulty.

Characterisation – My previous experience with Hardy’s work, is that she builds lush worlds and vivid characters. All the characters of this book had been thoughtfully and carefully created and had depth to them that I enjoyed. I felt Prue had an easy nature and one that helped her along the way and to make friends. I liked that she didn’t let her goal blind-sight her or twist her down a darkened path.

Visualisation – Hardy created such a lush and detailed world that it was very easy for me to visualise what was happening and tailor my imagination in a way that worked. I could clearly picture the characters and scenes as if I was a part of them.

Uniqueness – I have recently read quite a lot of children’s books that have some kind of mechanical element to the m but each has taken such a different path that they’ve all felt unique on some level. I particularly like the exploration of mechanicals in this book and how they were given a new life.

Star Rating – 4/5

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