Monday, March 27, 2023

The Wild Journey of Juniper Berry YA Review



About the Book

 Eleven-year-old Juniper Berry lives in a cabin with her family deep in the wild woods. Living off the grid is usually exciting, like the time she chased off three growling raccoons with a tree branch and some acorns, or when she thought she glimpsed the legendary Bigfoot. But her happy life in the wild ends abruptly when her younger brother gets sick, and the family moves to the city to be closer to the hospital.

Juniper and her older sister are sent to live with cousins they hardly know and attend a public school for the first time, which is harder to navigate than the wild woods ever were. Juniper feels like a wolf cub separated from her pack.

When Juniper notices that her cousin, Alayna, is being bullied by so-called friends, she’s ready to fight back like the wild geese do when protecting their goslings, but her cousin tells her to stay out of it; she doesn’t want Juniper making things worse. 

As the hospital bills for her brother start piling up, Juniper knows they’ll need to be paid before the family can go back to the woods, so she decides to make enough money to help out. With Alayna’s support, Juniper starts posting videos filled with her wisdom from the woods, hoping to get a following. But what if it doesn’t work? What if the bills never get paid? Not going home to the wild is Juniper’s worst nightmare. But while she’s stuck in the city, she might as well make the most of it, like sticking up for her cousin, for starters.

The Wild Journey of Juniper Berry is a story about perseverance when faced with difficult and unfamiliar challenges, belonging and finding your identity, compassion for others, and learning that our differences can sometimes be our strengths. (Goodreads)

Releases August 15th

Pre-Order HERE!

My Thoughts

I had so much fun reading this adventure of Juniper! She is such a great character and how this story was written really surprised me to be honest. I wasn't sure what to expect and there was a lot packed into the pages. The book starts out with Juniper and her family living in the woods and living off the land and off grid. This creates for a very unique life perspective for Juniper and her siblings. While the "world" considers it to be weird and not normal this book flips your perspective. The family has to go to the city where the hospital is located so Juniper discovers what lies beyond the woods. Her parents had settled in the woods because they did not want to be a part of the culture in city/town life. Not only are the people all different in the city but the general day to day is vastly different. There are some pretty strong points about what the world "values" and also how the world reacts to those that are different. I appreciated the plot line that included panic attacks and social anxiety as it was well written. Juniper doesn't care that she is different and she stands up for herself. 

I really enjoyed this story and I think it will create a lot of interesting conversations. Well worth the read! 

Five stars. 

"I received this book from Shadow Mountain Publishers for free. All opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review."

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