The Team of Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis: Background information when reading Wildwood

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Wildwood by Colin Meloy, Carson Ellis X
Wildwood by Colin Meloy, Carson Ellis
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Aug 2011, 560 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 2012, 576 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Tamara Smith

Buy This Book

About this Book

Beyond the Book:
The Team of Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis

Print Review

Husband and wife Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis live in a neighborhood in Forest Park, a 5000 acre northwestern wilderness on the edge of Portland, Oregon. To Colin and Carson, who spend hours and hours walking through the forest, it feels like its own country, vastly different from, yet so close to, the city. This is the inspirational landscape for Wildwood. In fact, when Colin and Carson began working in earnest on the Wildwood series, they began with a map that Carson drew of Forest Park, and from there their imaginations soared.

They have been brewing the world of Wildwood for a while. "The germ of this series goes back a long way," Meloy says. "For me, this is the culmination of a long-term collaboration with Carson, matching words and art.  I grew up on a steady diet of Lloyd Alexander, Roald Dahl, and Tolkien; this is our humble paean to that grand tradition of epic adventure stories." Ellis adds, "Wildwood is a project very close to my heart - the collaboration that Colin and I have been dreaming about for years."

They have been actively working on this idea since 2000, a few years after the couple met at college. As Colin states on the series' website: "Carson and I were living humble, impoverished lives in a warehouse in Portland, Oregon. I was thinking about starting a new band; Carson was doing oil paintings and selling them at fire-sale prices. We were kindred spirits. Since we'd met in college a few years prior, we discovered that our creative sensibilities lined up perfectly. Carson had done flyers for my college band. I sometimes suggested subjects for her paintings. We were looking for some way to create a real collaboration. We started working on a story."

That story - eleven years later - is Wildwood. In the time between writing the beginning of this series (which was originally titled How Ruthie Ended the War) and now, Colin Meloy formed his band The Decemberists, and began writing music, performing and touring the world, and Carson Ellis began an illustrating career, illustrating children's books such as Lemony Snicket's The Composer Is Dead, Dillweed's Revenge by Florence Parry Heide, and The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart. She is also responsible for all of the album cover, t-shirt and website art of the Decemberists.

There is even an iTunes playlist that the couple made for Wildwood


For a peek at Carson Ellis's artwork in Wildwood, check out the book trailer below!

Article by Tamara Smith

This article is from the September 21, 2011 issue of BookBrowse Recommends. Click here to go to this issue.

This article is available to non-members for a limited time. You can also read these articles for free. For full access, become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Brass
    Brass
    by Xhenet Aliu
    In 1996, Waterbury, Connecticut is a town of abandoned brass mills. Eighteen-year-old Elsie ...
  • Book Jacket: Timekeepers
    Timekeepers
    by Simon Garfield
    If you can spare three minutes and 57 seconds, you can hear the driving, horse-gallop beat of Sade&#...
  • Book Jacket: How to Stop Time
    How to Stop Time
    by Matt Haig
    Tom Hazard, the protagonist of How to Stop Time, is afflicted with a condition of semi-immortality ...
  • Book Jacket: Mothers of Sparta
    Mothers of Sparta
    by Dawn Davies
    What it's about:
    The tagline on the back cover of Mothers of Sparta says it all: "Some women...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck

A nuanced portrait of war, and of three women haunted by the past and the secrets they hold.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Next Year in Havana
    by Chanel Cleeton

    a Cuban-American woman travels to Havana, where she finds a family secret hidden since the revolution.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The French Girl
    by Lexie Elliott


    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Beartown

Now in Paperback!

From the author of a A Man Called Ove, a dazzling, profound novel about a small town with a big dream.

Enter

Word Play

Sorry, we do not currently have an active wordplay!

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.