Parents' Guide to

Wild Born: Spirit Animals, Book 1

By Carrie R. Wheadon, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Multiplatform magical beast series is a good fantasy intro.

Book Brandon Mull Fantasy 2013
Wild Born: Spirit Animals, Book 1 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 9+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 10+

Good read but gratuitous violence at the end

So my child is a very sensitive kid. I am always looking for the right mix of adventure and excitement, while not containing materials that will be traumatic (emotionally difficult) and therefore that he won't finish the book. Wild Born started off great. My son thought it was exciting, interesting, and relatable. The bonds between the children and their spirit animals made for interesting character development. We were doing fine until the sort of "climax" battle scene, where everything gets very violent and spirit animals and humans get thrown off cliffs, run through with swords, etc. Having gotten to know these characters, this was a very difficult scene to get through; in fact, we've given up on the series on account of it. I don't think children should learn that certain characters are "disposable" because they're lesser characters in the story. While this book has a lot of good in it, it's not to be recommended for a sensitive reader.

This title has:

Great role models
Too much violence
age 8+

this is a great book

this book is good for younger is really good for kids with an active imagination or for kids like adventures and animals

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (3 ):
Kids say (12 ):

Scholastic knows a great formula when it sees one. It certainly worked for the 39 Clues Series. Bestselling kids' authors played hot potato with a fun storyline -- A treasure hunt! A big family mystery! -- and kids could go online for prizes and games and more fun. Next there was the sci-fi time-travel series Infinity Ring. And here we go again, but now fantasy and magic have a turn. And, even better, magical animals. Not terribly original (His Dark Materials, Potter, The Familiars, Abhorsen Trilogy), but animals will always be great fantasy characters, especially for middle grade readers getting their first intro to fantasy worlds.

SPIRIT ANIMALS: WILD BORN started with a solid kids author: Brandon Mull of Fablehaven and Beyonders fame knows how to world build. But it's too bad the second author in line -- Maggie Stiefvater (The Scorpio Races) -- couldn't have helped a little building the relationships between the diverse characters and adding a bit more tension and mystery. We know the evil dudes are coming, but little else about them. And once Meilin rushes out of her city under attack, there's no news of what happened to make the foursome's quest seem more urgent. This installment ends abruptly with just a small piece of the whole quest accomplished, but it's all part of the tried-and-true multiplatform formula.

Book Details

  • Author: Brandon Mull
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Topics: Magic and Fantasy
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
  • Publication date: September 10, 2013
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
  • Number of pages: 208
  • Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, Kindle
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

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