2.5 stars'We are the inheritors of a wonderful world, a beautiful world, full of life and mystery, goodness and pain. But likewise are we the children of an indifferent universe. We break our own hearts imposing our moral order on what is, by nature, a wide web of chaos.'Sometimes I wish I didn't give out star-ratings and only wrote reviews, I think sometimes that would be easier than feeling it necessary to justify a low rating despite the fact that I DID like it. But there were some big problems I had overall.Wildwood is almost a Chronicles of Narnia and Labyrinth mix (minus the fact that Prue didn't wish her brother away). Full of crazy talking animals and a mysterious world known as Wildwood, or as the locals call it, I.W.: Impassable Wilderness.You see, on every map of Portland, Oregon, there is a big splotch of green on the edge of the city labeled I.W. This stands for Impassable Wilderness. No one’s ever gone in—or at least returned to tell of it.'The writing flowed, the storyline was entertaining, the small artistic bits strewn throughout were perfection, but...This thing was far too damn long. I may not be a patient reader but still, I know when a book is unnecessarily long. Truly, are there any actual middle-graders out there that read this in its entirety? I would really like to know. For the target audience, middle-graders, I think this would end up being far too much to handle. Extremely political and quite wordy at times (plus, we can't forget the length...541 pages was not necessary). Despite this it was a lovely story and I will continue reading the trilogy (even though that's just as damn long). So readers beware: an extremely enjoyable story, just requires some much needed patience to get through.