What Should Be Wild by Julia Fine

What Should Be Wild

“Delightful and darkly magical. Julia Fine has written a beautiful modern myth, a coming-of-age story for a girl with a worrisome power over life and death. I loved it.”  —Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler’s Wife and Her Fearful SymmetryIn this darkly funny, striking debut, a highly unusual young woman must venture into the woods at the edge of her home to remove a curse that has plagued the women in her family for millenni...

Details What Should Be Wild

TitleWhat Should Be Wild
Release DateMay 8th, 2018
GenreFantasy, Fiction, Magical Realism, Adult

Reviews What Should Be Wild

  • Julia
    Maybe I'm slightly biased, but I'm a fan.
  • MaryBeth's Bookshelf
    I think Julia Fine's debut novel What Should Be Wild is a fresh new voice for the literary community. The story was a bit confusing in the beginning but everything became clear at the end. Such an inventive, distinct, unique new story. i received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review and I am very excited to tell you that I loved this book.This is a "coming of age" story about Maisie Cothay, who comes from a long line of ...
  • Amy
    What Should Be Wild had me hooked from the start, carefully layering in the mysterious elements of a fantastical world and its fascinating characters. Julie Fine's narrative pacing is brilliant, painting a vivid, satisfying picture that draws you into her world while leaving enough questions to keep the momentum of the story. The twisty, darkly beautiful atmosphere of the book reflects the inner lives of it's characters as the plot unfolds carefu...
  • Jennie Melamed
    A dark, imaginative fairy tale that kept me enthralled! Very highly recommended.
  • Elie
    Since the Time Traveler's Wife is one of my favorite books I was excited to read anything Audrey Niffenegger strongly endorsed. Overall, really a wonderful read.The basic premise is that a girl, Maisie, is born with the ability/curse to kill or being back to life anything she touches. The book made me reconsider my perspective on physicality in a new way. After her dad disappears, Maisie is forced to leave her safe hideaway. During her exploratio...
  • Laurie
    Little Maisie Cothay was born from her mother’s dead body. Right away (thankfully) her father discovered that the touch of her bare skin would kill- or resurrect. It could even happen repeatedly- she killed her father several times before reaching toddlerhood. She could even resurrect the long dead, which necessitated coating all the bare wood floors and trims in the house she grew up in with several coats of varnish, and making sure she only w...
  • KC
    Maisie Cothay is a 16 years old who has the power to kill or resurrect another living creature, who has never felt another persons touch or picked a flower. She and her father, an anthropologist widower, live on the edge of a mysterious forest. After her dad vanishes, she sets off to uncover the truth regarding the woods, her father's studies, with the hopes in lifting her curse. What Should Be Wild is a fairy-tale crossed with magical realism fo...
  • Jennifer
    What Should Be Wild is an incredibly unique and intriguing story filled with the perfect mix of magic and adventure. This story has a wonderfully dark edge that makes the mythical elements more real. Maisie is written so that you somehow relate to her lonely and isolating upbringing and root for her along the way. The characters she meets in her search for her father increases the mystery of her existence and add to her background. Highly recomme...
  • tyto
    I received this from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.I was almost hesitant to read this one - a girl who can kill or resurrect with just her touch. I felt like it could go either way - it could be a fantastic or a very trite fairy tale. I'm glad I took a change with this one because it was fantastic. It honestly blew me away and there was so much depths and layers to the story. The writing was great, and the world development was great...
  • Abigail
    What Should Be Wild is a darkly enchanting story about a young woman who kills or resurrects everything she touches. It takes the essence of so much contemporary anxiety around childhood, gender, sexuality, and the natural world and pours it into timeless, haunting characters, distilling and exposing the conversations I have with my closest friends about what it means to be repressed, free, obedient, alienated, loved, or truly *wild.* The novel l...
  • Angela Marie
    Cursed. Maisie Cothay has never known the feel of human flesh: born with the power to kill or resurrect at her slightest touch, she has spent her childhood sequestered in her family’s manor at the edge of a mysterious forest. Maisie’s father, an anthropologist who sees her as more experiment than daughter, has warned Maisie not to venture into the wood. Locals talk of men disappearing within, emerging with addled minds and strange stories. Wh...
  • Kim McGee
    All the fairy tales warn children of going into the woods alone. Nothing good ever comes out of it. "What Should Be Wild" has the eerie quality of all those lovely Grimm fairy tales and an off kilter feel to it. A child is born, the mother dies leaving the father to raise her alone in the old secluded family home. He keeps her and her secret hidden so her only companions are her dad and the housekeeper.Her touch can kill and a retouch can bring b...
  • Dana
    Wow. Dark and secretive and twisty and surprising. This book wouldn’t let go of me once I started it. A force of a book.
  • Tina Panik
    Imaginative and haunting. Fans of of Haig's How to Stop Time and Albert's Hazelwood will thoroughly enjoy this title. This was an ARC
  • Serena
    Dark, and imaginative. A story of one girl, the latest in a long line of powerful and cursed women, looking to find her own place in a world that she cannot touch. A beautiful fairy tale, the magic in this story doesn't distract from the very real, very relatable coming of age story at its heart.
  • Chandra Claypool (wherethereadergrows)
    3.5 Stars.What a delicious and dark fairy tale/magical realism/fantasy - I'm unsure how to actually categorize this one! Very unique and probably won't be for every reader because of how different it is. The main storyline is Maisie, her unique ability to bring things to life or to kill them with her very touch, and her quest to find her father, Peter, when he disappears - seemingly to go looking for her.And then we get my favorite parts - the da...
  • Erin Wicks
    this is a rare and enchanting read. the author has a distinct and powerful writing style that immediately pulled me in. the ain character who is cursed is smart and funny and makes such an unusual premise feel not only plausible but real and relatable. i loved the sections that traveled bacl into the lives of maisies female ancestors too. they are imaginative and atmospheric and really chilling. its a book thats chock full of feminist characters ...
  • Sami
    Delightfully creepy and beautifully written. A cursed girl discovers the forest that has stolen female members of her family for generations.
  • Gaele
    Born with a curse that many women in her family have: Maisie Cothay cannot touch or be touched, for she holds the power of life and death in her hands. Without a mother, her anthropologist father has died and been reborn multiple times before she had control of her power, as he carefully watches, documents and contains her in the large manor house at the edge of the forest. Now sixteen, Maisie has questions – lots of questions, many centered ar...
  • Shelley
    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...
  • Marialyce
    3.5 dark fantasy starsYou can follow my reviews here on my blog https://yayareadslotsofbooks.wordpres... Maisie has the power of life or death. She is a young girl grown to adulthood without being able to be touched or to touch others for her touch brings both death and life. She is hidden away with her father, Peter, an anthropologist, who tries to investigate the woods that surround their home and bring with it a hidden curse.The women in Mais...
  • cheryl
    I can't say I'm typically a fan of the books folks categorize as magical realism, but this....this felt both real and was like magic in its ability to transport me into its little world.Maise has never felt a kiss on her cheek, a warm hand in hers, skin-on-skin. With a simple touch, she can kill. Or, alternately, she can revive. There's a beautiful description of her toddling across a lawn, leaving a brown trail of dead grass behind her; they eve...
  • Matt
    I picked this book up on a whim and never had it far from my mind once I started. For starters: this is a true gothic fairy tale. Timeless, and weaving a moral both simple and dense. What a truly amazing first novel to stumble into.Not to cheapen the quality of the writing by comparing, but it really reminded me of a cross of Shirley Jackson and Katherine Mansfield, with someNathaniel Hawthorne thrown in. On its face, this is the story of a young...
  • Jamie Jones Hullinger
    First let me start by saying that this book was quite a stretch for me.  I do not normally gravitate toward fantastical books like this.  Anything that requires me to extend the scope of what is real is not my first choice.  When I read the description I was intrigued so I decided to give it a go.  Those who know me well were shocked that I was reading this.  They knew this was way out of my preferred reading zone.With that being said, I hav...
  • Wendi Gu
    This book will haunt your dreams and fill you up. Incredible pacing, beautiful prose, and uniquely cinematic. I really can't stop thinking about it! I couldn't put it down!
  • Amanda
    I received a copy of this book from a Goodreads giveaway. This was darker than I thought it would be but I enjoyed the story.
  • Janet Slipak
    “Delightful and darkly magical. Julia Fine has written a beautiful modern myth, a coming-of-age story for a girl with a worrisome power over life and death. I loved it.” —Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler’s Wife and Her Fearful SymmetryIn this darkly funny, striking debut, a highly unusual young woman must venture into the woods at the edge of her home to remove a curse that has plagued the women in her family for millennia...
  • Cristine Mermaid
    I read this weird, beautifully written, disturbing fairy tale while in the woods which turned out to be the perfect environment because the wood is alive in this story and filled with a curse on a family of women . Julia Fine's writing was atmospheric and lush and so breathtakingly beauty during certain passages that I found myself reading and re-reading her words.The story centers around Maisie, a girl who has the power to give and take life wit...
  • Jessica
    Thanks to Harper Books for the advanced copy in exchange for my honest review. Not going to lie, this cover drew me in right away. This will definitely be a cover buy for some book worms browsing the shelves at bookstores, and they'll get an absorbing read to go with it! WHAT SHOULD BE WILD by Julia Fine is unlike other books I've read this year. I know I frequent the thriller genre, but I also love books with a touch of retelling or fairytales.M...
  • Sierra
    This is quite the unusual story.  Although I like the story line, I did feel like in some places, the story rambled on leading me to lose interest but then a few more pages and I was back into the story!Maisie Cothay has never been allowed to touch anything, humans included.  She was born with the power to kill or resurrect almost anything with just the slightest touch.  In trying to keep her safe, her family sequesters her in the family's man...