I love the Jackaby series by William Ritter so I’ve been looking forward to a new series by him. Changeling still has a connection to supernatural/mythical creatures, but it is a completely new series with new characters, a new setting, and new plot.
In order to renew the magic of the Wild Wood, goblins perform a special ritual involving a baby changeling. But when goblin Kull is distracted in his task to switch the changeling with a human baby, he forgets which is which and leaves! Growing up, Tinn and Cole are raised as twins, neither knowing which is the changeling and which is human. When they receive a mysterious message calling them to the goblin horde, they venture into the Wild Wood and discover who they truly are.
Changeling is a fun, magical adventure perfect for fans of middle grade. I was intrigued at the concept of two boys growing up side-by-side, one human and one a changeling, and the journey to discover who they are. Cole and Tinn are mischievously adorable, and I love that they are both worried they are the changeling and also hoping they are so their brother won’t be. Give me all the brothers who are best friends relationships, please!
While discovering which boy was the changeling was the main reason I kept reading, other aspects soon compelled me to finish the story. I love the magical creatures, the spooky witch, and the Thing hiding in the woods. I love how the boys’ mom, Annie Burton, plays a huge part in the story and isn’t left behind like most middle grade parents. Instead, Annie kicks butt and does whatever it takes to bring both of her boys home. She’s the real MVP of the book.
My favorite character, though, is Fable. She’s quirky and fun, and she does something extraordinarily awesome near the end of the story that makes me want to cheer.
Throughout the story, there are pockets of powerful moments that solidify that William Ritter is writing for the correct audience. Changeling is a brilliant fantasy story that kids of all ages will enjoy. And I’m excited to see what’s next for the magical Wild Wood.