Over the Woodward Wall

by A. Deborah Baker

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved that this book has such a whimsical and childlike mood but easily appeals to readers of varying ages. Everything about the plot has a nonsense feel and really plays on the reader’s hidden desires for childhood adventure. The two main characters Avery and Zib are so uniquely opposite of each other. They really carry the plot forward with their interactions with each other as well as how they each handle the situations they find themselves in. The kids have only barely begun their journey by the end of the book and already feel like they’ve been through so much at the same time.

All My Thoughts

May contain spoilers.

I adored this book. I try to never compare any book to another, but this had such a similar feel to the author’s Wayward Children series and that really works to its advantage. The things that make this so different from those books though is where it shines. This book really plays up the childish whimsy of the adventure Avery and Zib find themselves on. Despite the childlike nature of events, it has a deep and dark mood at the same time that very easily pulls in older readers. There is a lot of political drama going on in the background of the more flashy events like a girl made of a murder of crows and the characters being taken up by pirates. These events are so well placed to push both forward and subplots along.

Zib and Avery are such likable characters and complete opposites to each other. The author does a great job with this dynamic, especially with the fact that these characters are children. Their interactions with each other or so appealing and I love seeing this friendship and need for each other grow the way it does. The character interactions also extend to the other characters that end up joining them. They really round out the group and give off a very “found family” vibe that works for the setting.

By the end of the book the children are still stuck in this fantasy world they have stumbled on and nowhere near figuring out how to get home again. The author handled this so well that it’s hard not to immediately want to start the next book in the series.


A fun and whimsical adventure full of so much adventure and mystery. Easily hooks any reader in and appeals to the child at heart we all have.

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