Good morning everyone!
Today, I have the utter joy of being on the blog tour for The Wild Before, the brand new book from one of those authors that just GETS it, the brilliant Piers Torday.
Piers was kind enough to answer a few of my questions about his book and what made him want to revisit this world. I will tell you that when I finished The Last Wild, it ABSOLUTELY broke me. I cried so hard on the train that the man beside me asked if I was okay, ha!
The Wild Before
One frosty winter’s night, a pure white calf is born on an ordinary muddy farm in the light of a silver moon. This is the legendary Mooncalf, whose arrival has been foretold since the dawn of time. Hare knows immediately that if the calf is not saved it will be the end of all things.
According to a dream passed down from animal to animal, if the calf dies a great terribleness will come – rising seas, a plague, skies raining down fire… and Hare vows to protect Mooncalf with his life. Upon Mooncalf’s arrival, the old bull summons all the animals of the farm and tells them of this dream, warning that they must help Hare in his mission before it is too late. But it’s easier said than done, and soon Hare realises that he must act on his own…
I was incredibly lucky and got sent an early copy and my gosh, I absolutely adored it. Just like I predicted, it absolutely broke me. I think I finished and just wept for about 10 minutes. Being back in this world was so incredible. Seeing threads connecting this book to the sequels made my heart sing. Little Hare is the bravest little thing – when things around him are going from bad to worse, he refuses to give up and knows that while things might be hard, some things are worth fighting for. This book so gorgeously speaks of the importance of being kind to each other and to looking after the world. We only have one planet; we must look after it. One of the things that got me right in the feelings was the sense of hope being the most important thing in the world – we must always have hope. Things can get better; we can be the Little Hare in the world. We have to be. I adored this so much.
Can you describe the story in 10 words max?
Brave Little-Hare tries to save rare Mooncalf and stop Terribleness!
Where do you get the inspiration for your stories from?
From the world around me, from the books I love, and my childhood memories.
What made you want to revisit this world?
When Greta Thunberg stood up and inspired millions of children all over the world to go on a climate march, I realised that I had to. Climate change and anxiety is a number one issue for young people today.
How did you feel being back in a world with these amazing characters?
It was a real treat to return to a world I loved creating, yet from a different viewpoint, at a different time…it felt like visiting old friends I hadn’t seen for ages.
What do you want people to take away from this story?
That the world faces grave existential peril from climate change, but that if we act now, and act together, we can stop it. And that whatever happens, we must never, ever, lose hope.
What’s next for you? Can you give us any hints as to your next adventure?
I am staying in the natural world, but this time, I am looking up, to the tree tops….
What advice do you have for young, aspiring writers?
Write as often as you can. Like riding a bike or playing football, the more you practice the better you get. Even just ten or fifteen minutes a day counts and will make a difference.
What have you read recently that you can recommend?
Julia and the Shark by Kiran Millwood-Hargrave is a profound, absorbing wonder for older readers, and Otherland by Louie Stowell is a riotous, pin sharp and joyful contemporary take on the fantasy portal adventure.
A massive thanks to Piers for answering my questions! I am VERY INTRIGUED by the sound of the new book… and having read both the recommendations, I can absolutely attest to their brilliance!
Make sure you check out the rest of the stops on the blog tour (info below) and get yourself a copy of The Wild Before (and the rest of the series) today!