The mermaids she saved from the oil spill are long gone. There’s no evidence of them, and she’s been branded as a liar and a fake in the media and at school. Her environmental activist parents have moved on to a protest to save Old Growth trees from being chopped down. June isn’t particularly concerned with this cause until after falling asleep at the base of a giant tree she wakes to find herself 40 feet in the air on one of its branches!
From this point on she becomes obsessed with the tree, and it appears the tree is becoming obsessed with her too. Soon, she is trapped 170 feet above the ground, and the magical spirit that resides in the tree isn’t interested in letting her go free or allowing anyone else to save her. Is the tree spirit good or evil? Will Juniper’s feet ever touch the ground again? – Goodreads.com
When I was a kid, I loved to climb trees, read in their shade, swing in a hammock attached to their branches – and I’m always a little heartbroken when I see old, beautiful trees cut down to make way for residential or commercial purposes, so I connected with Juniper and her motivations in this story. After reading this book, I’m wondering if I should have listened more closely to those trees to see if they were trying to communicate – you never know.
As with the first book in this series, the author includes a message regarding environmentalism, but it’s intertwined with Juniper’s story and is more about awareness. Something I like about these books is that even though Juniper has these extraordinary things going on in her life (mermaids, talking trees), she also experiences average teenage problems – boyfriend dilemmas, overly dramatic friends, school complications, and clashes with her parents. I admire Juniper’s courage and determination – she knows who she is and where she wants to go.
It’s clear the author did her research regarding Native American legends and a real-life person who actually lived in a tree for a period of time – which fascinated me.
Without giving anything away, I was surprised something that happened between Juniper, her father, and uncle near the end of the story was never mentioned among the three of them. Since this aspect had been a source of tension between the brothers during the story, I think it would have been more satisfying for the reader if it had been addressed.
I’m enjoying Juniper’s exciting, magical journey and there’s a hint near the end about what may be in store for her next – I look forward to the next addition to this series.
I received a digital copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.