When Hattie visits her granny for the first time in years, she’s not sure what to expect. Granny has always been unusual. Now she’s gone missing without trace…
Hattie is determined to find her. But in the strange little village where Granny lives, nothing is as it seems. Is magic real here? What is the shadowy place known as the Un Forest? And who is the mysterious girl in wooden armour? One thing is certain. An ancient evil is stirring in Brokewood-on-Tandle… and only Hattie can stand against it.
The Girl in Wooden Armour is a fun adventure that is filled with family and magic. It did some things Really well, and others not so great.
The atmosphere in this book is just superb. The darkness of the Un Forest and its monsters came through so well. Even though this is a book for younger readers, it definitely didn’t shy away from the scary and violent bits and I loved that about this so much. I also feel that Hattie’s feelings of lonliness and anger towards her father after the death of her mother were portrayed really well.
Hattie was a wonderfully headstrong and brave main character, who is the perfect mix between sensible and stubborn hands-on. And granny was Awesome. She is weird and quirky, and just a lot of feisty fun. The villain was a bit too much pure evil, but she was also lovely creepy.
But I also had some issues with this book. It did get quite infodumpy at times, which made the reading experience jarring at times. But my main issue is with the ending. Although I appreciate father’s new girlfriend stepping up and saving the kids, I would have liked father to have played a bigger role in it. He did have his moment with Hattie at the very end, but I feel they could have had a bit more. I also think a great opportunity was missed with Jonathan and his card game. His knowledge and obsession with magical creatures never really added anything to the story itself.
And then the girlfriend has a secret that conveniently helps them all get out of trouble… a secret that isn’t revealed. It was just an easy way not to have to deal with the consequences and left me wholy unsatisfied.
Overall, this was a really entertaining read… with some missed opportunities. But I can definitely see it’s target audience enjoy this a whole lot. Or any other reader, if they don’t think about things too much.