Emma's New Life

Children - Animals
102 Pages
Reviewed on 06/29/2020
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Paul G. Wilson was born on October 16, 1957 in West Allis, a suburb of Milwaukee WI. Paul was encouraged to read at a young age by his parents, and was reading at an eighth grade level when he was in third grade. His love of reading led him to begin writing short pieces as a child.
After high school, Paul found an ad for a free writing test for a writing correspondence school. After scoring well, he took the course and graduated from the Children's Institute of Literature in Redding Ridge, Connecticut. His final project was a chapter book, The Secret of Blackbeard's Treasure.
Paul began writing children's stories as a hobby, always hoping that someday he could share them with the world. Then, he signed up for an adult night school writing course at a local tech college. He was fortunate enough to pick a night where the class was taught by Jack Byrne, a local professional writer who was instrumental in getting the name of the course changed from Creative Writing to Writing for Publication. Jack introduced Paul to the publishing world, and helped him prepare to submit his stories.
When submitting directly to publishers didn't produce results, Paul turned to self-publishing and print-on-demand distribution. Fortunately, he has a life time of titles, and plans to release many titles in a variety of subjects in the next few years.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Emma’s New Life is a highly engaging and adorable book for children and was penned by author Paul G. Wilson. The titular character Emma is a hedgehog, and the tale is centered on the theme of animals in nature, and how they try to survive when faced with the human world and its many fears and threats. Written as a chapter book for independent readers, the adventure sees Emma meeting humans in their world and finding herself quite helpless and scared amid these huge, dominant figures. She longs for her home with her woodland friends, but will she ever find it and return there again?

Author Paul G. Wilson has created a delightful tale that is reminiscent of the likes of Graham Greene and Beatrix Potter but with a thoroughly modern feel. Twelve chapters take readers through a well-constructed plot with plenty of ups and downs and enigmatic friends for Emma to meet and make. Her quest for adventure and the boredom of the natural world is soon answered with a lot of new experiences and fears, but the plot also teaches its young readers about resilience, hope, and the respect that we should all have for natural creatures and nature itself. The dialogue is a particularly strong element, which characterizes Emma with a youthful voice that readers will find highly pleasant and relatable. Overall, I would definitely recommend Emma’s New Life as a bright and enjoyable read for keen child readers, but also one which challenges them to think about nature and the treatment of animals in the modern world.

A. L. Peevey

Emma's New Life by Paul Wilson is the story of Emma, a hedgehog living beneath the Great Tree in the Grand Wood. She has friends who also live nearby: Jeremy, a squirrel; Nigel, a fish; Gwendolyn, a bird; and Olivia, a deer. Emma wakes up one morning and decides her life is boring. Despite her friends’ protests and compliments, Emma believes their lives are more exciting than hers. She travels to the edge of the Grand Wood in search of new friends and adventures so she will not be bored anymore. As night falls, Emma misses her little burrow and must decide where to sleep. She finds a strangely shaped cave that is not what she thinks it is until it is too late. So begins a series of adventures that Emma never dreamed of. Will she ever find her way home again?

Emma's New Life by Paul Wilson is a familiar tale of talking animals with very human feelings. Each animal has its own hopes and fears while facing life in the Valley of the Great Tree in the Grand Wood. Such names make us remember traditional tales we have been charmed by. The importance of friendship is prominent in this story of Emma, who only wants to find what she is missing in her life. She is willing to leave her home and beloved friends behind to wipe away her boredom. This is a challenge that we all face in life: to discover new experiences, both fun and frightening, and learn lessons from them. By the end of this well-paced book, readers young and old are reminded not only of the comfort in familiar faces and places but also the need for adventure and growth.

Debjani Ghosh

Emma is a hedgehog who feels she is leading a dull life, and that her friends lead a far more exciting life than her. She keeps complaining about how all of them have so much excitement in their lives, however, she barely has any lively moments in hers. She yearns for an adventure. One day, her wish is granted, and she finds herself transported to a completely different world, the world of humans. She tries adjusting to her new surroundings but soon finds herself out of her depth, facing threatening situations she could never have imagined. Will Emma be forever trapped in the cruel world of the humans, or will she return to her beloved woods? Read Emma’s New Life by Paul G Wilson to find out.

Paul G Wilson’s Emma’s New Life is a captivating children’s book, best suited for middle-grade readers. However, I will be bold enough to say the book will appeal to even the Young Adult audience. Wilson knows how to hold the attention of his readers, especially his target audience. Wilson crafts a smoothly flowing tale of adventure. He vividly portrays the various animals such as Emma herself, Olivia the deer, Nigel the fish, Gwendolyn the bluebird, the wolf, the bear, etc. A parent will be delighted to read this story aloud to their child; the child will also enjoy reading this story.

The story highlights the importance of friendships in life. It also emphasizes the fact that ordinary is good. In the rat race to achieve the extraordinary, we often fail to appreciate the ordinary things that provide structure in life. Most importantly, it provides a valuable lesson to the target audience to treat animals with respect and care. These creatures are not toys to be played with. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and therefore highly recommend it.