The Wicked Wood by Isobelle Carmody

By Isobelle Carmody

A dozen of the main fascinating and unique writers for youngsters have selected fairytales as beginning issues for his or her personal unique tales, during this staggering and spellbinding two-volume collection

In this better half to The Wilful Eye, six celebrated writers—Catherine Bateson (Stranded in Boringville), Victor Kelleher (Dogboy), Cate Kennedy (The global Beneath), Maureen McCarthy (Rose through the other Name), Nan McNab, and Kate Thompson (The New Policeman)—reclaim fairytales, taking readers again to the deep, darkish woods the place wolves howl and never every thing could be explained. Readers of those tales will lose themselves within the wooded area; a spot of threat, secret, and transformation.

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He glanced briefly at me, and back to Gretel. ’ ‘Then go in peace,’ he said, and bowed again before returning to his people. I waited until he was out of earshot. ’ I demanded. She shrugged. ‘He’s a trader, remember. ’ ‘Yes, but what was he talking about? ’ She hesitated, and then nodded, like someone relenting under pressure. ‘I’ve agreed to attend the tinker women if I’m needed. ’ ‘Because I don’t want it generally known. It could harm my standing in the community. Also, I don’t want you involved.

Of course it didn’t. As I released my hold and stepped free, I barely had time to think: I’m doing it! Flying! I will see the faerie light, I will!  until, mercifully as they say, I lost consciousness. The generously spreading branches of the old tree saved my life, for I was still more or less intact when I reached the ground and lay spreadeagled amongst the tendrils of bindweed that had once been the setting of my fantasies. I wish I could say I dreamed of Robin Goodfellow during the hour or more that I lay there unattended – his glowing face stooping over mine, his wings brushing my lips with faerie-like concern – but I had no such vision.

With a brief nod of apology, I reached for the latch. Straightaway he grabbed me by the hair and forced me roughly to my knees. ’ I shook my head, too scared to speak. ‘Then answer me this. When you visited us last, how exactly did you come to see past our dimming?  a crack in the front door,’ I stuttered out. ’ He didn’t wait for me to finish. ‘Which eye was it that betrayed us? ’ It came to me then – in the midst of my terror – the truth about Gretel. ’ I blurted out. ‘But why? She’d already seen you!

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