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Wandering Wild

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  374 ratings  ·  68 reviews
Raised by Wanderers, sixteen-year-old Tal travels the roads of the southern wild in her Chevy by day and camps in her tent trailer at night. Hustling, conning, and grifting her way into just enough cash to save her fifteen-year-old brother, Wen, from bare-knuckle fighting was once enough to keep her dreams of traveling the whole world at bay. Everything changes when the ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published May 3rd 2016 by Sky Pony Press
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Average rating 3.78  · 
Rating details
 ·  374 ratings  ·  68 reviews

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(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Egmont USA and NetGalley.)

“I’m in love with the sound of turning wheels. My brother, Wen, says I’m crazy. He hears only the gravel kicking up on the battered doors of our Chevy. Nothing else. He doesn’t hear what I do. To me, wheels sound like new places, unknown riches. They sound like possibility.”

This was an interesting story about a gypsy girl who suddenly wasn’t sure if wandering was what she
Adam Silvera
This book sounds so damn beautiful. I'm just going to go ahead and time-travel to Fall 2015 and will report back.
Rhea Dsouza
Reading Wandering Wild was a task. It was annoying to struggle through the writing, and it was painful to trudge through a story that didn’t hold my interest beyond the first couple of chapters. The characters were flat, and their motives were ambiguous, and much like the story itself, they drifted without a true destination for themselves. After all of this criticism, I should have rated the book lesser 3 stars, and yet I can’t. I was strangely looking forward to reading more and more about ...more
Kelly Gilbert
Jan 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful, moving, haunting, and endlessly compelling debut novel. The writing is so lush and assured, and the characters are authentic and heartbreaking. One of the loveliest romances I've ever read, and also a beautiful story about what it means to be true to yourself in the face of pressures and temptations.

I love, love, love this book so much.
Stacey Lee
Dec 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
It would be a travesty if this book were not published. Jessica Taylor is a master storyteller whose imagination knows no bounds. I dearly hope this is picked up by a new publisher now that Egmont has folded.
Heather Marie
Dec 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
From the moment I began reading WANDERING WILD, I knew I was in for a treat. The beautiful prose Jessica Taylor has created gave life to the most wonderful voice. I had chills from page one because I felt as if I was reading something by Corey Whaley or Nova Ren Suma; two authors whose books I absolutely adore. Tal's voice and her life as a Wanderer is told so perfectly, and yet the heart break you feel for her, and the sibling relationship between her and Wen feel absolutely real.

I have to
S.M. Parker
Feb 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Loved this debut! Full review to come!
Eileen (BookCatPin)
Nov 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Wandering Wild has me at a loss for words. It's a story that opened my eyes to another world. I loved how different the story felt even if looking back at it, nothing major stood out.

The pacing of the book felt slow at times but I enjoyed the overall development of the story. We're always given bits and pieces of new information to go on whether it was the present condition of the Wanderers or the flashbacks of the pack's history. The story arc was engaging enough to keep me reading. I wanted to
Suze Lavender
Jun 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Tal is a Wanderer. Her younger brother Wen is the only family member she has left. They're traveling from place to place with a group of people. They are never safe and they need to make money for the camp leader. Wen and Tal con people to get their much needed cash. Not everyone in the camp is friendly and Tal always needs to look over her shoulder, especially if she wants to protect Wen.

Tal is sixteen years old and she doesn't go to school. She likes the freedom of the wandering, but that
Jan 21, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-to-review
(I received a copy from Netgalley, In exchange for an honest review.)

This was an okay read, But I didn't love it.

I felt sorry for Talia, as knowing the only way out of an arranged marriage was too raise a big amount of money in a short time would be awful. This is why I could understand why she turned to conning people out of their money, even though I didn't like it.

The pacing in this was a bit slow for me, as apart from the cons, there wasn't much happening.

The ending was alright, and I was
I.W. Gregorio
Jan 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I am devastated that Egmont's closing will delay the publication of this book, one of my most anticipated of 2015. However, the writer is extremely talented and I eagerly await news of its release from a different publisher.
Jan 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
Love the idea- but this ended up not really being my cup of tea :(
DNF @ 45%

This feels like a Rocky movie.

So I'm not exactly sure I was expecting from this. I can't exactly remember why I added it, but it's interesting, but unfortunately, not for me.

Talia wants to save her brother, Wen, from bare-knuckled fights. Because obviously, at fifteen, how can an adolescent boy handle that? There are parties. There is the occasional bonfire. She is an arranged marriage to a strange man and she can only "buy" her freedom through millions. Meanwhile, their mother is
Andrea Heltsley
I loved Tal, Wen, and Spencer! What a great group of complex characters! Spencer was a great love interest. Swoon worthy for sure! He believed in Tal even though he had every right to distrust her. Tal was a fantastic heroine. She battled real emotions and moral dilemmas. Wen, another awesome character. The whole bookstore situation was cute. Paranormal or not, I never could tell. The conclusion of the book was satisfying and I am looking forward to reading more by this author. Five glittery ...more
This was pretty good, but I had a hard time connecting with Talia. I kept expecting more to happen. I loved Wen - he was the most interesting character IMO. I'm a bit warped, and was wishing for a different outcome, so I found the end a bit of a letdown and a little anticlimactic.
Charmaine Lim
Sep 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporary, romance, ya
I enjoyed this so much! The life of a Wanderer is so interesting to me and I love that this explored a lifestyle similar to that of a gypsy, but with a bit of a twist.

Full review:
Kim Baccellia
May 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
YA Books Central review:
**Disclaimer: I received an Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacted my review.**

I was intrigued by the synopsis for Wandering Wild. And then I started reading Wandering Wild.....I ended up quickly DNF'ing because this book is absolutely not for me.
Sep 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Liked it. Liked the cons. I'm entirely gullible, so seeing those from the opposite POV is fascinating to me.

Couldn't relate to the main character at all though. Liked the brother sister relationship/bond, it felt very real. The romantic relationship with Sway though felt a little contrived, and as much as I love a good con, these too felt a little bit over the top at times.

Was an addictive read. Once I started I was in until the end. BUT - There's no epic moment of clarity and theres no
Ifa Inziati
May 27, 2018 rated it liked it
I... had a mixed feeling about this one. I liked the premise, the setting, the Wanderer culture, the atmosphere of the story, and even the cons (they were quite creative). I liked that it happened in a humble small town where nothing really happens so when something did happen, it was chilling. I liked the concept of Falconer and signs of owls that the Wanderers believe, and also the meaning behind it. It added to the magical realism part of this book.

I really wanted this story to focus on
Feb 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
I love this cover. I don't know what it is about it but I love it. So that is what first attracted me to this book. The second thing... the synopsis. Gypsies, love, con artists, scams, yup sounded like an interesting book. New story too. I am always up for something fresh and new. I really really enjoyed this book. It was a pleasant little surprise, a hidden gem.

Tal is a gypsy, a wanderer. Her and her brother travel with a caravan from place to place, conning people for money. This is their

Check out my other reviews at Little Miss Bookmark!

Okay, let me give you the low down on this one. It's about this girl ... who happens to be a gypsy ... I'm sorry ... wanderer ... (WHICH IS A DAMN GYPSY) ... who is a con-artist and claims to be a compass (she tells her band of merry gypsies wanderers where to go) but she knows she isn't a compass but thinks that she might be the compass that everyone thinks she is when she thinks she might not be but probably is (confusing, huh) ... who follows
Heather A
I snagged a copy from Netgalley when this was available as a 'Read It Now'.

I found this one kind of dull. The idea was an intriguing one, interesting to see a YA heroine with a completely different lifestyle than that of the high school girl you usually see. Tal is a Wanderer, part of a moving caravan of gypsies who never stay in one place.

Until they camp in a certain town and a scam goes awry on an intriguing boy named Spencer who changes Tal's outlook on things. Should have been interesting,
Jan 09, 2017 added it
Shelves: 2016
I finished this a few hours ago and I'm still not sure what to make it - I have mixed thoughts, to say the least. I quite liked it and I really felt for what Tal was going through, she's in a tough spot. I did think of putting it down a few times - I'm still trying to recover from a book slump in 2015, so I'm trying to be pickier with books - but there was something that kept pulling me back, even if it did take me a few days to read, so that says something. It's certainly unique and different, ...more
Sally Lotz
May 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
The author, Jessica Taylor, has crafted an amazing tale in "Wandering Wild." It's a story of family, love, hopes and dreams and sometimes doing something painful to be where you need to be. The characters jessica created are likable and real. Talia "Tal" and her brother Wen belong to a family of Wanderers, where they've learned to live by cons and scams. Tal, wants more. She wants to wander on her own, travel to places a Wanderer would never go. But she's got two problems 1) she's been bought ...more
Carol Adler
Mar 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Captivating characters! I love it when you can’t get the characters out of your head well after you read the final page. Tal, Spencer and Wen are memorable personalities wrestling with what paths they will take. I especially loved how differently characters remembered the parade from long ago that intertwined their destinies. Wandering Wild is beautifully written, a wonderful story with an intriguing setting in the Wanderer community that I could not put down.
Jun 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tal is a grifter, happy with her wandering life, until she meets & tries to hustle good guy Spencer Sway. He complicates her life in more ways than one, including making her even more determined to buy herself out of an arranged marriage. While it's a bit lite, given the social issues it could have brought up, it's a highly enjoyable read, especially for the realistic, emotional bonds between Tal & younger brother Wes. Definite an author to watch!
Kristen Lippert-Martin
Dec 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Can't wait to read this!
♠️ TABI ♠️
Feb 18, 2016 rated it liked it
A wild and so, so different kind of story.
Taryn Bashford
Jun 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The story totally sucked me in. Unexpected, unique characters and an intriguing world exposed. By the end I was rooting so hard for the bad guys to get their come uppance. A compelling read.
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Jessica Taylor adores atmospheric settings, dangerous girls, and characters who sneak out late at night. She lives in Northern California, not far from San Francisco, with a law degree she isn’t using, one dog, and many teetering towers of books.

A MAP FOR WRECKED GIRLS, her first young adult contemporary thriller and a Junior Library Guild Selection, will be published August 15, 2017 by Dial Books
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“He wanted to learn how the world worked, and I wanted to learn how to work the world.” 13 likes
“I can’t go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.” 0 likes
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