What Should Be Wild was a captivating read from beginning to end. As soon as I read the synopsis for this book, my interest was piqued. If I may be perfectly honest, the stunning cover was what first caught my eye. Gorgeous, and so fitting for this dark tale.
It’s difficult to imagine a life in which you can’t truly experience touch – such a basic human interaction that we crave from the moment we take our first breath. Maisie Cothay was not your basic, average girl. Her slightest touch could snuff the life out of a human being or other living thing, but another swipe, poke or brush could also bring it back to life. While I can’t blame her father for being cautious around Maisie, I can blame him for his lack of fatherly behavior and affection. He was more interested in treating his only daughter as a subject in one of his studies than in nurturing a real relationship with her. This resulted in Maisie living an extremely sheltered and lonely life. My heart broke for Maisie’s unusual life and condition, and I was completely invested in her and her story throughout the book’s entirety.
What Should Be Wild drew me in with its unique and richly descriptive story. It brought me back to my own youth and all of the stories that I remembered reading when I was a child. The fairy tales and lore that were not always the happily ever afters that we have been subjected to in more modern day retellings. No, these were the stories that warned children of the dangers of the world and what could possibly be lurking out there beyond the safety of their own homes and surroundings. Julia Fine created this grim, dark feeling of foreboding and executed it superbly.
This was an intriguing, entertaining, and alluring read. Brimming with curses, family heritage, determination and human spirit, Julia Fine’s debut was a great introduction to her originality and beautiful, vivid writing. I’m looking forward to reading more by her in the years to come.