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Emma and the Banderwigh

(Tales of Widowswood #1)

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  117 ratings  ·  51 reviews
Ten-year-old Emma doesn't believe in faerie tales or monsters that secret children away in the night--until she meets one.

She lives in a quiet village at the edge of Widowswood with her parents, her Nan, and her little brother, Tam. Ready to abandon the whimsy of childhood, she finds the boredom of chores comforting and Nan's fanciful bedtime stories silly.

One morning, a
Paperback, 150 pages
Published October 12th 2015 by Curiosity Quills Press (first published October 11th 2015)
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Average rating 4.14  · 
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 ·  117 ratings  ·  51 reviews

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Montzalee Wittmann
Jan 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Emma and the Banderwigh (Tales of Widowswood #1) by Matthew S. Cox is another wonderful tale by one of the best fantasy writers out there. Not once, while reading this, did I think this was book was for children. This is a book that will cross all age levels. I was so wrapped up in the adventure, the family, the village, the monsters, that I felt I was part of the story! Cox can do that to a person! I felt I was an invisible part of this family and I loved it. Great fantasy, imaginative ...more
Mar 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
I had requested this one on Netgalley, I thought it sounded so cute and fairytale like. And I was happy when I got notice that they accepted my request. since I’m from the Netherlands it seems I’m excluded from lots of books.

Any way, when I started reading this book I saw I was right. It really was like a fairy tale, a dark one at that. Which is right up my alley! I can’t say that it immediately drew me in, I had to get used to the writing style first. If you think about it, it’s only natural
✿ℎazℯℓ - thℯ ℛock Cℎick ℱairy✿
This book is a clash between a dark fairy tale world and an RPG world.
What do you do when the things you never believed in came to life?
Gosh! Prepare for the adventure!

Emma didn't believe. She was a logical girl. She always had an explanation for everything. If you ask me, her attitude is that of a late teenager than that of a kid. Her view of life is kind of advanced. She's a very observant girl. I love that about her. She's also a good daughter, a very dutiful sister and a concerned
Aug 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Engaging story. Maybe a bit scary for my ten year old but then again she seems to be sleeping.
Jessica Cowgill
Jul 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great read

this is a real good book that I actually had to put away twice because I was reading it at night and it scared I have told my friends to read this book. Really really good.
Aug 29, 2016 rated it liked it
I received a free electronic copy of Emma and the Banderwigh from the author Matthew Cox in exchange for an honest review. The story is a middle grade fantasy adventure story about 10 year old Emma who thinks she's too old for fairy tales and skeptical about the superstitions of her grandmother. However, Emma learns that her Nan's stories aren't stories at all, and she must save her family from a cursed being haunting the widowswood near her home. Because Emma is no ordinary girl, she is from a ...more
Andrew Buckley
Oct 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Emma is a delightful protagonist who's logical world is upended, first by superstition, and then by the realization that her superstitions are actually real. Cox weaves a world that will send chills up and down your spine. Beautifully written with an atmospheric tension that draws the reader in. If you're looking for a creepy fairytale-esque adventure, I'd heartily recommend it.
Aug 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My only complaint is that it's somewhat longer than it needs to be. A little too much repetition of the same kind of event or description. Other than that, an enjoyable adventure.
Dave Higgins
Mar 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Weaving fast-paced fairytale action with more mundane challenges, Cox creates a story that is as accessible as a great bedtime story underpinned with the depth of a fantasy novel.

Emma has lived on the edge of the Widowswood her entire life. A sensible child, she devotes herself to her chores and treats the stories that her grandmother tells at bedtime as fancy. And when a girl staggers from the forest years after she disappeared, her empty expression matching the tales of a monster that feeds on
Oct 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What do you do when you are only ten and don't believe in fairy tales that is what is happening to Emma . She lives with her family outside the small village. and one day a young girl comes out of the woods talking of a child stealing monster lurking monster . When the darkness comes calling what is Emma to do . She needs to reach deep inside herself to save her family , I really like the characters in this story, Emma is a sweet character trying to grow up . But you see her grow up and become ...more
C.J. Milbrandt
Emma, age ten, is far too sensible to believe in the tales of fairies, dragons, and monsters spun by her old Nan, but that doesn't prevent them from being true. A tense and vivid fantasy. Cox's story resonates with a deep love and fierce protectiveness for home and family. Nature magic and druids. Shapeshifters and spirit animals. Potions and spells.

Descriptions of violence may be too graphic for more sensitive readers. Hardier souls will enjoy the blend of familiar and fantastic story
Aug 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book in a three book series telling the story of 10 year Emma who is just learning that her Nan, mother and herself have magical powers. She can talk to animals and perform a few tricks. The Banderwigh has his sights set on Emma and in this story you'll see how that turns out. I am way past the age of YA but quite enjoyed this story. I recommend this book to anyone who loves the fantasy/YA genre.
May 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy of this book from the author, Matthew S. Cox, for an honest review.

Emma doesn't believe in Princesses, Fairies, magic and she certainly does not believe the Banderwigh is real. That is until her entire reality is turned on it's head and she has no choice but to believe.

Emma lives with her parents, her brother Tam and her Nan in a small two bedroom house. Her dad is captain of the guard and her mom helps people in the village. She never realized the help her mom was giving
Jan farnworth
May 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is an amazing start to a series that is sure to delight people of all ages as it has moments of such an intensity that you forgot it was meant for a younger age group. I love that our main character is the perfect kind of character that is growing up and chooses not to believe the folky fairy tales her grandma has told her for years. When she faced with the truth the story really ramps up and she comes into her own as a believer and defender of her family and things that go bump in the ...more
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Can't believe it took me so long to read this.

Found in backlist pile of books last night. Wonderful story of growth and development. Exciting and somewhat scary adventure. Definitely would be scared if I was Emma. Love seeing her overcome and prevail despite her fear.
Janis Hill
I would like to thank Curiosity Quills Press for an ARC of this book in exchange for an open and honest review.

This is a very entertaining YA fantasy novel. At first I thought it was set in our past and so found some of the historical inaccuracies grating, but as I read more I learnt it wasn’t set in our world, simply set in a world similar to our own. I could cope with it after that.

It was a good read, definitely better suited to a YA/NA audience. Not that that is a bad thing, I love the YA/NA
Tonja Drecker
Oct 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book has the feeling of a traditional fairy tale, reminding me a little of Hansel and Gretel but with so much more love and mystery.

The story takes place at an earlier time--dark forests, no running water, rustic shacks and guards keeping the towns folk safe. It's a simple world long before any modern conveniences and the perfect setting for magic and things which haunt the shadows at night. I loved the descriptions in this book. They pull right into the scenes, bringing them to life in a
Sabrina Kaye Fox
DISCLAIMER: I received this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions herein are of my own.

Author: Matthew S. Cox
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Pages: 218

Synopsis from Goodreads:
Ten-year-old Emma doesn't believe in faerie tales or monsters that secret children away in the night--until she meets one.
She lives in a quiet village at the edge of Widowswood with her parents, her Nan, and her little brother, Tam. Ready to abandon the whimsy of childhood, she finds the boredom of
Oct 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Overall rating: 5

My very first thought after I finished reading this was, “ I wonder if there is a hard copy that I can send to my granddaughter?” All I found was a paperback which will have to do. A perfect read for the pre teen reader, one thing I feel that stood out the most was that this author truly captured the personna and emotions of Emma and her siblings. Sincere yet ever so innocent, Emma grabs a readers attention and holds fast as she faces, many times reluctantly, each new trial and
She Writes She Reads aka Thinking M & some other things...
Dark. Not for young kids. Well written. And for me...kind of scary. Or maybe a lot scary. I don't read scary books and now you know why. It might seem more terrifying for me because this is listed (on Amazon) as a children's book with a somewhat child-friendly illustration. The content mid-book is much darker than I expect for a children's book.

I skimmed much of the book at first until I realized that this is not the average flash in the pan Kindle quick read. Mr. Cox's writing compels me to
This was a rather odd tale. The world the author creates is very different from our modern one. Several little things highlight this, from descriptions of their surroundings and living arrangements (including a family bed!), to tales of fantastic beasts and magic creatures. Some of the dialogue seems forced and false, probably a result of trying to create a dialect similar enough to ours to be understood and different enough to be distinctive. Most of the characters are very believable and quite ...more
Casia Courtier
Nov 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs
I received this book from the author, Matthew S. Cox, for an honest review. There was no compensation given (aside from the enjoyment of reading another book).

Emma and the Banderwigh is a book geared towards a younger audience than the other books I've read from Cox. From reading the acknowledgements (something I like to do), I learned that this story had started off as a short story and grew to what it is.

If you love fairy tales (like I do), Emma and the Banderwigh is a great addition to your
Ashley Martinez (ilovebooksandstuffblog)
Emma and the Banderwigh

A fun and spooky fairy tale. I enjoyed how the story played out and despite it being geared towards a younger audience I still enjoyed it. It reminded me of like a Chronicles of Narnia adventure. If you enjoy spooky fairy tales with brave little girls then be sure to give this a read!
Nov 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Emma doesn’t believe in monsters or faeries but when a young girl stumbles out before her, Emma views of the forest quickly begin to change. For it was said that the Banderwigh had taken Hannah a decade ago and now standing before Emma, weak and alone, Hannah has suddenly reappeared. Why was Hannah returned and where has she been? Only one person has ever seen the Banderwigh, but their grisly stories have kept individuals from traveling into the dark forest that lines the community. They belong ...more
Oct 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
To Believe Or Not To Believe... In Magic

This series must be read in order. This is the first book. I can't wait to read the next one!

Emma is too old to believe in faerie stories. She spends her days helping her mum and taking care of her younger brother Tam. She loves her Nan and would do anything for her... Except believe in her silly made up stories! She worries that her Nan is not long for this world and refuses to wear anything but the old ratty dress her Nan made for her. She just knows
Jul 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was pleasantly surprised by Emma and the Banderwigh. Being unfamiliar with the author, but wanting to take advantage of a promotion, I purchased this young adult novel. Matthew Cox writes to his audience, keeping the story interesting enough for adults, but also appropriate for upper elementary aged tweens. Each character is well developed, and the narration of the tale encourages the reader to continue turning pages well past bedtime ;) . I will confess to a bit of confusion as the heroine ...more
Sissy Lu {Book Savvy Reviews}
This was an easy, quick read and decidedly dark in content without being over the top for a youthful mind. While many may consider this a Young Adult, I would say that it is aimed more toward the Children’s section. That being said I’m thankful that it wasn’t as dark as it could have been.

We begin our story with Emma, a little girl who is stubborn in her mindset that fairytales aren’t real, that goblins and faeries do not exist, magick doesn’t exist either. Understandable, because practicality
Magda Żmijan
Little Emma is trying so hard to be a responsible, clear-thinking girl. She wants to behave like an adult, doesn't want to believe in monsters. But why would she? She's still a child, why not let herself behave like one? Maybe she's just scared, or maybe she wants to help her mom. Little does she know her mother more than believes in the strange creatures and magic, she knows it all exists.

For a story that's rather short, this one starts slowly and picks up the pace as it goes along, showing us
May 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Oh, how I love Emma! When I was a little girl, I loved to read. I was at the library all summer long....well, all year long actually, but my fondest memories are of summer reading club. This book would have been on my list of favorites had it been available then! I love reading many different genres, and well-written middle grade books are among my favorites to read. This one fits the bill.

Emma and the Banderwigh is a very well written middle grade book with wonderful characters and a magical
Carolyn Injoy
Emma and the Banderwigh by Matthew Cox is an excellent science fiction fantasy for teens and young adults. I gave it five stars because it kept me entertained from start to finish. Thanks to the author for a great read.

Emma is a ten year old girl on an epic adventure. She doesn't want to believe Nan's stories of the Banderwigh but is still frightened by the tales told to her and her younger brother Tam. So was I. The tension when Emma begins to learn what she doesn't want to believe is real is
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Born in a little town known as South Amboy NJ in 1973, Matthew has been creating science fiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Somewhere between fifteen to eighteen of them spent developing the world in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, and The Awakened Series take place. He has several other projects in the works as well as a collaborative science fiction endeavor ...more

Other books in the series

Tales of Widowswood (5 books)
  • Emma and the Silk Thieves (Tales of Widowswood, #2)
  • Emma and the Silverbell Faeries (Tales of Widowswood, #3)
  • Emma and the Elixir of Madness (Tales of Widowswood, #4)
  • Emma and the Weeping Spirit (Tales of Widowswood, #5)
“She did not know what to believe anymore. The Banderwigh was real. Goblins did exist, and for a reason she could not begin to grasp - wolves did not feel like eating children.” 0 likes
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