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Into the Wild

(Into the Wild #1)

3.7  ·  Rating details ·  2,339 Ratings  ·  325 Reviews
Twelve-year-old Julie has grown up hearing about the dangerous world of fairy tales, The Wild, from which her mother, Rapunzel, escaped.

Now The Wild wants its characters back. Julie comes home from school to find her mother gone and a deep, dark forest swallowing her hometown. Julie must fight wicked witches, avoid glass slippers and fairy godmothers, fly griffins, and ou
Hardcover, 261 pages
Published June 21st 2007 by Razorbill
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Rating details
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Mar 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
I GOT MY ANSWER ABOUT HOW THE 12-YEAR-OLD HAS A DAD WHO DIED 500 YEARS AGO. I'm not satisfied. What a cop-out.
Otherwise, though, a creative story with fun, imaginative use of fairy tales. I braced myself for a slow read but it kept me fairly well engaged throughout. A sweet ending with some real heartache bumped it up from 3 to 4 stars in my mind.
Not really sure how I feel about the cat. He mostly annoyed me but I could see how a middle school reader might like him.
2/5.0 stars

After reading Vessel I couldn't help but feel disappointed with this one. It reminds me of Once Upon a Time (the television series). If I'm not mistaken, this book was released prior to the show though. I guess I'm not the right target market for this book, definitely more for tweens.
Nov 12, 2015 rated it did not like it
It's been a long while since I've picked up a book that has been so dreadfully dull and unexciting that each chapter was a struggle to get through. I am a huge fan of fairy tale retellings and stories that transport the fairy tale characters to the modern world. But this book utterly failed its plot and characters.

The conflict of the story gets underway after very little introduction to the characters. When the situation started getting heated and serious, I didn't feel connected to the characte
Oct 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Nice YA with fairy tale characters. Just enough horror to grab a young reader without giving them nightmares, hopefully. The characters were closer to Grimm than Disney. If the Brothers had had time to develop their characters they might have turned out like these. The twist on the Fairy Tale World was very imaginative.
Gwen the Librarian
Aug 13, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kidlit, fairy-tale
Julie’s mom is Rapunzel, her brother is Puss n Boots, and they’re having dinner tonight with Snow’s Seven. Living with a bunch of fairy tale characters in the modern world is tough. Even harder is keeping The Wild under Julie’s bed and out of power. The Wild is a powerful, magical world that wants to keep the characters in their stories. One night, someone sets The Wild free and it begins to take over the town. All of Julie’s friends and famiy are forced back into their stories. As Julie enters ...more
Jul 25, 2007 rated it really liked it
Sarah Beth Durst is a first time author. She was signing her book, 'Into the Wild', at a local Harry Potter event. Since I'd seen her at a recent sf convention, I knew she was One of Us. One underlying premise is: what would the fairy-tale girls and princesses be like if allowed to grow up into a modern woman. In the story, Julie lives with her mother Zel and her brother Boots. She knows all how the fairy tale characters broke out of their stories in the past and are now living in our society. S ...more
Dec 31, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fairytales
A brilliant and amazing debut novel! Durst turns Grimms' fairy tales (the real and true, rather gruesome ones) on their heads when Rapunzel's daughter has to retrap the Wild- which forces everyone it absorbs to enact a fairy tale over and over- after it escapes from its prison under her bed!
Sep 03, 2009 added it
I love reading about fairytales. It never seems to get old. This book was actually awarded the Truman award this year. Not too bad Sarah Durst, even if everyone mixes you up with the other "Into the Wild" book.
Feb 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
If you're a fan of retold fairy tales, or fairy tales with a twist, I highly recommend Into the Wild.
Aug 29, 2008 rated it really liked it
Julie lives a pretty normal life. She has a mother who loves her, a great best friend, and typical middle school issues. The only thing that makes her different is the fact that she is constantly surrounded by the stuff of fairy tales - literally. Her mother, Rapunzel (Zel) found a way to escape The Wild and keep it contained so the fairy tale characters can live a life outside of their “story.” The fairy tale inhabitants have enjoyed their freedom for 500 years without incident.

Zel maintains c
Patrick Burgess
Oct 29, 2009 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: little uns... fairytale fanatics... people learning to read
Shelves: reviewed
Annoying Heroine, Shallow Plot

I love fairytale-inspired books, some of my absolute favorites are Deerskin and At Spindle's End by Robin McKinley, The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale, and Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. What these writers have done is taken the heart of some of the oldest tales and transplanted them into a whole 'nother body, one that moves and sounds familiar, but looks completely different (in a really crazysexycool way).

Into the Wild isn't a bad book, I just didn't find much
Feb 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shannon Miranda
Traditional Literature Genre

This is the story of Julie, whose mother is Rapunzel (Zel) from the fairy tale we all know. Zel fought and was able to release all of the characters from these fairy tale stories so that they can lead real normal lives. Julie and her brother Puss-in-Boots (the cat) now has the task of trying to save her mother and the rest of the characters from the power of the “Wild” which had been contained but was released.
This was a fun story and a unique creative
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
Very clever!! Sarah Beth Durst has created an original setting, where the world of fairy tales is shrunk to fit, trapped, underneath the bed of Julie, Rapunzel's daughter. Fairy tale characters have escaped and are trying to live in the twentieth century, free as long as "the Wild" stays captive under Julie's bed. But when someone deliberately releases the Wild, and Rapunzel and everyone else Julie loves is taken back into their fairy tales, she must venture into the Wild herself to try to put t ...more
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Faireytales are real! All wrapped in 1 story! Pretty neat.
Lenni Jones
Jan 05, 2018 rated it it was ok
Actual Rating: 2.5

Would you like to know what took me so long to read this book? The fact that it was boring. I LITERALLY fell asleep while reading it. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE DAY. Granted, I didn’t get a lot of sleep the night before, but that isn’t the point. Let’s go over some of the things I didn’t like:

•The whole book was in a third person POV. Lately, I can’t stand third person and I only want to read it from first. In first person POV you get to know everything that goes through the characte
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
Durst, Sarah Beth Into the Wild, 261 p. Razorbill ( Penguin), 2007.

Julie has always known that her mother and her mother's friends fought a great battle and escaped from The Wild, a relentless force which forced them to replay their roles in fairytales, not matter how disastrous, day after continual day. Now someone has made a wish in the Wishing Well and the Wild not only is trying to reclaim all of the escapees, but also Julie's hometown and the surrounding countryside. Julie may be the only
Jun 12, 2018 rated it liked it
I tend to like the traditional story mashup genre, and I enjoyed this one. The premise is that the fairy tale/nursery rhyme characters escaped from the impersonal force known as "The Wild" that embodies and is the world where all fairy tales are set. Kind of like the "Once Upon a Time" TV show, but the fairy tale world itself is the bad guy. They zealously guard the Wishing Well that could reempower The Wild, which of course ends up happening. Their only hope is Julie, the "normal" daughter of R ...more
Valerie McEnroe
This is an original fairytale adaptation set in modern day. Julie's mother Zel is actually Rapunzel. Her grandmother is Rapunzel's witch. The wild, a mass of living vines, is contained under her bed threatening to grow, and re-establish the fairytale land. Julie wakes up one morning to find the wild has escaped. When her grandmother, owner of the Wishing Spell Motel, leaves the wishing well unattended, someone makes a wish that sets the wild free. Her mother and grandmother vanish into the jungl ...more
Jaeri Ayarez
Jul 28, 2017 rated it it was ok
When I started reading this, it was confusing. Even though the characters were from fairy tales, I wish it had a nice intro. It will also helps for those who are not truly familiar with all fairy tale stories like me.
I don't also like the character of Julie. Her attitude. But I guess she had to be like that because she's not from fairy tales.

Overall, for me, the plot wasn't good. and I was wondering if the author had to spend money using those characters because of plagiarism....
Jan 07, 2018 rated it liked it
I usually like books about fairy tale characters but this didn’t really work for me. In my opinion, I don’t really think Rapunzel and Puss in Boots seem made for each other and it’s a little weird that the author has the characters living together. Some parts just didn’t really work for me but I think the ending was sweet but didn’t make a lot of sense.
Feb 24, 2018 rated it liked it
A quick, enjoyable middle-grade read - it lacks the kind of nailbiting, page-turning ferocious whimsy of, say, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making, and is a bit twee with its "modern" renditions of well-known fairy tale characters, but read as a story of one girl learning how to see her mother as a real person instead of just a role, it's satisfactory.
May 22, 2018 rated it liked it
2.5? This one was definitely aimed at a very young audience.
May 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
Nice enough as a children's book. A tad too predictable for me, but very colorful and full of fairytales.
✨Jinglemarco✨  Маркуша - Мишутка (Nursery rhymes enthusiast)*
This has a nice cover and the author is a very nice person, but honestly I don't like this book at all and I'm going to leave this one as dnf. Maybe someday i'll accomplish to finish it.
I'm so tired of characters in fairytales retellings who hate fairytales. I certainly understand the not so merry aspects related to them, but if I choose to read a novel about a fairytale I don't like to read pages full of criticism toward them. I mean, fairytales more than not can be fun, or at least that is wha
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Carrie Spellman for

Once upon a time, the characters in all the old fairy tales escaped. To our world. Where they live like normal people. Well, almost normal. Okay, Julie, the daughter of Rapunzel, doesn't think there's anything particularly normal about any of them. Or her life. And there is definitely nothing normal about the thing under her bed.

Since the escape, Rapunzel has cut off her hair and runs a beauty salon. She and Julie live with Julie's brother, Puss a
Jun 19, 2010 rated it really liked it
I first read about Into the Wild on author Jeri Smith-Ready's web site, and immediately added it to my TBR list, as well as bookmarking Durst's own awesome website*. Now I'm sorry I took so long to read Into the Wild; it's a charming fantasy for young readers, but it should appeal to fairy tale lovers of any age. Now I'm anxious to get my hands on the sequel, Out of the Wild as well!

Julie Marchen is an ordinary twelve-year-old girl whose mother owns a hair salon and whose grandmother runs The Wi
May 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone, fairy tale fans, people looking for strong female characters in YA
One of my favorite genres of fiction is the "retold fairy tale." Sarah Beth Durst's debut novel, Into the Wild is retold fairy tale, coming-of-age novel, and dark fantasy all in one. Once upon a time there was a girl named Julie Marchen... Haven't heard that one before? Julie's the daughter of Zel, better known as Rapunzel. You know her, right? Golden hair, lives in a tower? Yes, that Rapunzel.

Julie, daughter of Rapunzel, lives with her mother and adopted brother Puss in Boots. She, like most te
Mar 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Julie is just like any other twelve year old girl. She doesn't seem to quite fit in at school, she doesn't get along with her mom, and o, she's Rapunzel's daughter! You know, the Rapunzel with the long golden hair that lives "happily ever after." This makes Julie feel even more of an outcast because of all the secrets she has to keep for her family. The biggest secret being that "The Wild", where all the fairy tale creatures live, is living under her bed. She knows that she always have to be ext ...more
Sep 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Julie Marchen is a girl of many secrets, most of them not entirely her own. Firstly, her mother is Rapunzel; yes, the fairytale woman with the incredibly long and beautiful hair who lives in a tower, although now she wears her hair in a short bob and resides in Northboro, Massachusetts. Also, Julie’s brother is Puss-in-Boots and her grandmother is a real witch (the spell-casting kind). And the worst part? Although Rapunzel escaped from and defeated the Wild long ago, it still exists, and it’s un ...more
Mar 14, 2011 rated it liked it
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

"In the darkness, the heart of the fairy tale waited..." (last line)

Everyone knows a fairy tale or two, but Julie Marchen knows them all - personally. Being Rapunzel's daughter, Julie gets a fair dose of weird daily. For one thing, the Wild Wood lives under her bed. It had to stay somewhere after Rapunzel defeated it, and of course under Julie's bed is its favorite place. Julie wishes she could just be normal and to survive junior high, but when Puss-in-Boots is your brot
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What's the Name o...: SOLVED. YA possibly childrens Daughter of fairy tale character rescues them [s] 8 72 Jun 03, 2016 07:45PM  
Conflict 2 2 Oct 25, 2015 01:54PM  
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Sarah Beth Durst is the award-winning author of sixteen fantasy books for adults, teens, and kids, including The Queens of Renthia series, Drink Slay Love, and The Stone Girl's Story. She won an ALA Alex Award and a Mythopoeic Fantasy Award, and has been a finalist for SFWA's Andre Norton Award three times. She is a graduate of Princeton University, where she spent four years studying English, wri ...more

Other books in the series

Into the Wild (2 books)
  • Out of the Wild (Into the Wild, #2)
“The lamb baa-ed vigorously as Mary dragged it into the manicure room, and Zel winced. She really should insist Julie come work, She could use the help, plus it would mean extra mother-daughter time--and, Zel thought wryly, I won't have to find a spare tower in the suburbs.
Closing the appointment book, Zel went to finish trimming Linda's hair. "Did I hear a sheep out there?" Linda asked.
"Sick dog," Zel said. "Now, bend your head down." Linda obeyed and Zel ran her fingers through the back of her hair to check for evenness. All she needed to do was think of a way to make Julie come without Julie immediately assuming her mother was trying to ruin her life. Not an easy task.”
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