Blog tour: ‘The Wild Before,’ by Piers Torday, cover by Thomas Flintham.

You may well already have read the stunning, ‘The Last Wild’ trilogy. Set in a land in quarantine, a deadly virus has killed all the animals except pests and it’s expected to be equally dangerous to humans. ‘The Wild Before’ is an equally brilliant prequel which explains how the virus came to be and some of Kester’s back-story.

‘Can one hare alone change the world? The captivating animal adventure destined to be loved by readers of all ages. A stunning hardback edition from the bestselling, much-loved author, Piers Torday.

One stormy, snowy night, a pure silver calf is born on an ordinary muddy farm by the light of the moon. This is the legendary Mooncalf, whose arrival has been foretold since the dawn of time.

According to a dream passed down from animal to animal, if the calf dies, a great Terribleness will come – rising seas, a plague, skies raining down fire, the end of all things… and Little-Hare vows to persuade all the animals to protect Mooncalf, whatever the cost.

But it’s easier said than done, and soon Little Hare realises that he is the only one who can save the world…’

I wasn’t sure how I would feel about reading a book where I already knew what the outcome of Little-Hare’s mission to save Moon-Calf and ultimately animal kind would be. But I needn’t have worried; the magic of Piers’ writing had me rooting for Little-Hare and his friends as they frantically searched for a plant which might help stop the spread of the virus. As the terrible prophecy started to come true bit by bit, I couldn’t help but hope that Little-Hare would succeed.

Hope is indeed a key theme of this story – hope that Little-Hare will find the cure, hope that Moon-Calf will survive, and hope that the Great Terribleness won’t come to pass. As Little-Hare grows in confidence and begins to believe that maybe, just maybe, he can make a difference, seeds of hope for a better future begin to flourish.

Piers also very skilfully encourages readers to think about the impact human activity is having on the planet and its inhabitants, and what role (however small) they may be able to play in reversing the damage already done. No one is too small or insignificant to make a difference.

Beautiful, enchanting writing from one of the country’s very best children’s authors. Recommended for readers aged 9+ regardless of whether they’ve read ‘The Last Wild’ trilogy or not!

Library Girl.

*Many thanks to Quercus Children’s Books for inviting me to be a part of this blog tour*

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