The Secret Wild by Alex Evelyn

Fern Flora Featherstone may just be my new favourite heroine. She is curious, mischievous and intelligent, not to mention being absolutely positive she can communicate with plants!

She has grown up in the wilds with her botanist parents and is always keen to explore new areas, meet new plants and prove herself to her family. After a dangerous encounter on the Amazon river, her parents decide she should live in London with her Uncle Ned.

He is kind and rather forgetful, getting lost in the books he writes and the characters who have quite literally taken over his life.

They muddle through with lots of tea and toast.

While travelling to London, Fern finds a plant lost from a crate of rather unusual plants, and meets a woman she calls The Botantist, a firm and demanding sort of woman!

Naming this young plant, Special, Fern senses an understanding between her and this plant. An adventure ensues where Fern must protect and allow Special to survive but she will need help from the botanist. Finding her secret wild at the magnolia hotel, Fern stumbles into much more than just plans to turn London green…dangerous and deadly plans!

I loved this story and the newness of city living to a young girl who loves nothing more than being at one in nature, with her toes buried in the grass.

Her knowledge of plants is immense and this comes to her rescue more than once. Having grown up completely solitary, Fern has a lot to learn about making friends. Woody, her new neighbour, is fearful of many things….plants being top of the list and he finds Fern slightly odd! Theirs is a friendship that needs some love and attention, just as Special does.

A brilliant story about friendship, re-wilding city spaces and finding your feet!

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