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The Woven Path

(Tales from the Wyrd Museum #1)

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  714 ratings  ·  53 reviews
Timely reissue of the classic fantasy trilogy by Robin Jarvis, following on from the landmark publication of DANCING JAX, his first novel in a decade.

Dare to enter the Wyrd Museum, where fantasy meets the seriously sinister…

In a grimy alley in the East End of London stands the Wyrd Museum, cared for by the strange Webster sisters – and scene of even stranger events…

Paperback, 448 pages
Published July 7th 2011 by HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks (first published 1995)
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Average rating 3.87  · 
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 ·  714 ratings  ·  53 reviews

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Jan 02, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to X by: Q
Do not judge this book by the cover or the dull sounding and ill-fitting synopsis! After the first few chapters which fit the synosis nicely, the book takes a much darker (and more exciting, in my opinion) turn. There's time-travel, war, a talking teddy bear and, unfortunately, not many characters left by the end of the book. Despite the very odd-sounding above combination of things, I thought the book was very good and am looking forward to starting the sequel soon.
Another problematic novel from a wildly inconsistent author. (Spoilers)

Firstly, the 'romance' was an offensive literary poster child for 'No means yes'. Twenty chapters can be condensed into 'If I harass this unwilling woman for long enough, she'll fall in love with me out of sheer exhaustion, and then all the kiddie readers will cry because they're being brainwashed that this is real romance.' Are you kidding me? SO MUCH NO.

Secondly, the novel couldn't decide what its actual focus or genre was.
Jul 14, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was almost a 1 star for me, but the intriguing start to the story kept it at 2.  I read this to see if my son would like it, and I can honestly say I would NEVER recommend this to anyone's kid.  I was fine with the dark and sinister world of the museum, I thought that was great!!  But when you had little punk ass kids torturing a dog to near death (and then the death that followed), well, I started hating this book.  I don't like animal torture in adult horror books, so finding this in a bo ...more
Wow - if this is fantasy aimed at children, then I want to go back to primary school!

It's the story of Neil, whose father becomes a caretaker at a strange old museum, where three old ladies live amongst some very odd exhibits. He meets a talking bear, gets sucked back in time and ends up fighting the Prince of Demons during the blitz. I don't remember the stories I read as a child having plots like this!

I loved it. It's powerfully written and doesn't pull any punches. It's very dark in places an
Suzanne Becker
I hated this book. I'd give it a lower rating if it wasn't so excellently written. Some of the imagery and events cross from dark into outright horrifying. My problem is that I read The Woven Path at a very young age, so the multiple murder scenes and awful dog stoning seemed extremely inappropriate for a "children's book" (but I guess it's more of a young adult/teenager novel). I had nightmares for days after reading this; The Woven Path is one of the only books I actually regret reading. That ...more
Nov 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After browsing my bookshelf for about 10 minutes and realising I’ve read everything on the shelves, I picked up the woven path. It was my absolute favourite book when I was about 12 and I’ve kept the whole trilogy ever since for sentimental reasons. I started reading the first few pages while I pondered what to do and before I knew it I’ve read the whole book in a few days.

Still loved it the same as I did when I say 12 except I’d say it was even bleaker, darker and scarier than I remember - eit
Chris B
May 27, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was spell-bound by this book when I was younger, especially because at the time I was very much interested in World War II and the Blitz. Some of the imagery is still fascinating, such as Ted, who is a teddy bear containing the soul of a dead US Airman, and an escaped demon envisioning itself as the Nazi bug on World War II propaganda.

I loved this book when I firt read it at the age of 14. It's refreshing when a kids book deals with slightly darker subject matter, as this one does.
I really liked the story and character development - Ted was great. I think I even shed a few tears at one point.
Jan 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was obsessed with Robin Jarvis’ books as a child, and was really excited when this one was released, but I remember getting about a quarter of the way through and giving up. I didn’t like the time travel element and it seemed to be moving too slowly. In the last couple of years, I rediscovered his books with the Dancing Jax and Legacy of Witches series, and I decided it was time to give the Wyrd Museum series another go.

I loved the start of the book, but once Neil and Ted went back in time, I
Mariko Green
Jan 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So different from what I was expecting. It's actually very dark, violent, and pretty scary. The characters did not turn out how I would have expected, with people being more cruel, unlikeable, or unimpressive than you often find in a children's book. I'm not sure I would've liked it as a child or teen, but I'm also a weenie and can't handle dog deaths; I can imagine some children really liking how different it is from the usual fare, but it might also be too dark for some.

The writing is good, a
S.L. Dearing
Apr 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first in the Wyrd Museum Triliogy (which is one of my favorite series).

The story is solid and the set up fantastic, as it leads the reader to 2 more exceptional children's books. My only complaint is that the character of Tony is supposed to be from Brooklyn, but reads more as if he is Cockney, but seeing as how the author is English, I can see the issue. However, Robin Jarvis does get the accent correct by the end of the book. Other than that, it's a great read!!
Jean Ryan
May 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book surprised me. Looking at the cover and reading the back I thought I could tell I would like the book. Although, it didn't go the way I suspected I still liked it. It had more horror/scary elements then I usually read. When I think about it though it wasn't that there were tons of horror aspects more that the way people died was described more horrifically then I would have expected in a book for younger audiences.
Noeleen Bowers
Nov 12, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: made-it-half-way
I had my library get this book. So I tried to try read it but I was so confused. It started off good and then it just got confusing for me. I stopped reading halfway. I hVe the second book I coming at a used bookstore while I was on vacation. So I hope I can either read that one without knowing how this one ends or if I like it at all.
Matthew Hodge
An outstanding start to a new Jarvis trilogy. A strange but hugely compelling combo of Norse mythology, time travel and East End London during the Bltiz.

It's fantastical, it's scary, and ultimately heart-wrenching. What more could you want?
May 03, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Strange book for young adults where almost everyone dies? Neil and his brother Josh move with their dad into a museum. Their dad just got a job with lodgings there. Time travel and mayhem ensues. "Teddy" is possessed by an american soldier from WWII!
Jan 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read so long ago and I can't remember details but know o was transfixed. Maybe time for a reread.
Kevin John Leake
Beautifully written.

I have read all three volumes.
And enjoyed every book.
I was in my middle 40s when I read them.
Chantale Lipke
Dec 18, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I honestly really wanted to like this book. But after trying to force myself to read it and never being able to read more than six pages at a time without feeling tortured, I finally gave up.
Stephanie A.
Yes...that was extremely weird. I will not be continuing this trilogy.
Sandra Visser
In a grimy alley in the East End of London stands the Wyrd Museum, cared for by the strange Webster sisters – and scene of even stranger events.

Wandering through the museum, Neil Chapman, son of the new caretaker, discovers it is a sinister place crammed with secrets both dark and deadly. Forced to journey back to the past, he finds himself pitted against an ancient and terrifying evil, something which is growing stronger as it feeds on the destruction around it…

Dare to enter the chilling and fa
Jennifer Lott
My first overwhelming impression is that this book is too violent for children. Thankfully it does not seem to have been misrepresented in the market (I saw a quote somewhere stating it wavers between a teen and adult audience, and I agree with that). Nonetheless, the opening chapters were very deceptive: child protagonist upset with his dad for moving, exploring his new home the Wyrd Museum and finding it spooky...this in no way prepared me for an adult book that included brutal murders and dog ...more
Sep 26, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I will admit, I did not finish this book. The story's premise is that a boy goes back in time to WWII London trying to get his younger sibling back. A demon also goes back and is released. The demon increases the level of evil in people. So, when one jealous woman suggests to some young boys to harm a dog of a neighbor, the boys stone the dog nearly to death. The description of the dog at the point he is found still haunts me - he licks his toothless mouth and tries to crawl to the person he kno ...more
neil chapman comes to the wyrd museum because his fathher has become the caretaker. The sisters of the museum are quite weird. when he is walking round the museum he discovers a talking teddy. His younger brother also finds the teddy and disappears through a time window and Neil is frightened for him and he jumps through the time window but because of the delay he arrives in wwii. Belial is a monster who they are trying to capture for the museum sisters. Neil has some frightening experiences dur ...more
Dirk Lapere
Dec 21, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
The 3 rating is meant to be "neutral" as I did not finish this book.

When I picked up the book, I was thinking of a fantasy YA book. In reality, this is a much darker story which is a genre that I never liked. It definitely is YA (but not for the youngest audiences) and it reads well. It kept me reading well past the point I would have normally put down the book, but in the end, my indifference for horror / dark stories made me abandon it in favour of some lighter reading.

If you like dark, haunti
Jan 14, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
really engrossing actually

Re-read 18 July to 22 July 2013

You know, it's interesting that on re-reading this book I've kind of changed my mind about liking it as much as I did back then.

I found Neil to be a bit obnoxious and wanted him to get on with things. Other than that, the story was pretty interesting and surprisingly dark.

I think that's why I loved it the first time I read it: it was dark for a young adult's book and I found it to be unpredictable.
Aug 21, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an engaging fantasy mixing mythology (Norse and Greek) with time travel. The story started a bit slowly, but then picked up when Neal and "Ted" end up in London during the Blitz in 1941. There are spies, demons, and ghosts as well as a spooky museum, home to the Webster sisters (aka, the Fates). I look forward to reading the next book in the series, The Raven's Knot.
Feb 17, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who like fiction and adventure.
Shelves: fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Fiona Lane
May 28, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a young adult book which is harmlessly dark, based on a museum that a family move to as their father got the job of curator their. There are all sorts of strange goings on in the museum which transport the curators children back in time to the blitz and the dangerous happenings of the time.
Oct 21, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Another confused book. Not confusing; confused. Is the audience adults? Because the language makes it VERY clear that's the case. Is the audience books? The themes and childish level of emotions makes it VERY clear that's the case. Extremely difficult words and extremely simplistic emotions and characterizations make this book just a complete jumble, with no clear audience.
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Robin Jarvis (born May 8, 1963) is a British children's novelist, who writes fantasy novels, often about anthropomorphic rodents and small mammals – especially mice – and Tudor times. A lot of his works are based in London, in and around Deptford and Greenwich where he used to live, or in Whitby.

His first novel – The Dark Portal, featuring the popular Deptford Mice – was the runner up for the Smar

Other books in the series

Tales from the Wyrd Museum (3 books)
  • The Raven's Knot (Tales from the Wyrd Museum, #2)
  • The Fatal Strand (Tales from the Wyrd Museum, #3)

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