Amos Oz’s new book Suddenly in the Depths of the Forest is an intricately woven fable with an enchanted quality hovering around the edges. Matti and Maya, a pair of inseparable young friends, live in a cursed village that was robbed of all of its animal life one dark night by Nehi the mountain demon. Not even the tiniest trace of the lost creatures remains; not a whisker, not a hair, not a claw. Only memories, which are quickly becoming lost as the children’s parents grow older and forget the pets they once had. All their lives, Matti and Maya have heard the warnings that their elders give them: don’t go out after dark, don’t go into the forest, don’t ask too many questions. Don’t, don’t, don’t, or you’ll end up just like strange Little Nimi, the wild whooping boy who lives on the outskirts of their society. Don’t, or Nehi will steal you away. Even so, it isn’t long before bold Maya encourages timid Matti to throw caution aside. The two have their own secret, the shared glimpse of a real live fish. Where there is one animal, there must be more! Soon enough, the two find themselves breaking every rule as they venture into deep dark depths of the forest, terrified and exhilarated by what they might find there. This is strange and shadowy tale with a strong message of acceptance that carries through the text. This book will mystify middle and older readers, and would be a fun read aloud for younger listeners. 144 pages. Recommended by Molly Crumbley, Librarian.
- Suddenly in the Depths of the Forest
Suddenly in the Depths of the ForestHot
Harcourt Children's Books, 2011