Having loved The Candle and the Flame, I was so excited for The Wild Ones! And talk about a powerful book about solidarity, community, and love. About fighting back and using our voice, sticking together and nourishing power. Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts.
Meet the Wild Ones: girls who have been hurt, abandoned, and betrayed all their lives. It all began with Paheli, who was once betrayed by her mother and sold to a man in exchange for a favor. When Paheli escapes, she runs headlong into a boy with stars in his eyes. This boy, as battered as she is, tosses Paheli a box of stars before disappearing.
With the stars, Paheli gains access to the Between, a place of pure magic and mystery. Now, Paheli collects girls like herself and these Wild Ones use their magic to travel the world, helping the hopeless and saving others from the fates they suffered.
Then Paheli and the Wild Ones learn that the boy who gave them the stars, Taraana, is in danger. He’s on the run from powerful forces within the world of magic. But if Taraana is no longer safe and free, neither are the Wild Ones. And that…is a fate the Wild Ones refuse to accept. Ever again.
(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)
The Wild Ones is lyrical, magical, and stunning. The writing is exquisite and there were so many sentences that just stopped me while reading. Celebrating friendship and support, it’s a book that isn’t afraid of showing the pain because it’s a piece of their journey. While this feels a bit more experimental – with passages like memories and more stream of consciousness – Azad weaves a journey of resistance and love. The beginning feels like a slow unfurling of atmosphere and vibes and then all of a sudden there’s this switch and the action builds on this foundation.
The Wild Ones is a story about coming together all united in the language of pain and the pursuit of freedom. Of bonds of sisterhood and friendship, love and understanding. It’s tender, emotional, and feminist. Reading The Wild Ones is an experience that brought me through all my emotions. And if you’re looking for a book where reading it is an experience, then you have to check out this one. About trauma, pain, and injustice, but also about healing, love, and acceptance.
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