Saturday, March 9, 2013

The Search for WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi

Premise: Eva Nine is a human being raised underground by a motherly robot. She has lived her entire life alone with the robot and she's desperate to get out and find all the other humans. When she makes it above ground, things are not how she imagined. There are giant, dangerous creatures set on capturing her! And trees that walk! WHAT?!
The Search for WondLa
Title: The Search for WondLa
Author: Tony DiTerlizzi
Length: 466 pages
Genre: Science Fiction
Series or Stand-Alone: Book one in the WondLa trilogy
Content appropriate for: Grades 4-10
5 stars
3 adjectives that describe this book: memorable, breathtaking, futuristic

WOW! After holding this book in my hands and seeing the incredible illustrations, I just knew I would love The Search for WondLa. I just didn't know how much I would love it. Tony DiTerlizzi has absolutely blown my mind! Each chapter opens with a gorgeous full page illustration in in only 2 colors. Each one could stand alone as a work of art.

In The Search for WondLa DiTerlizzi has built a complete and compelling world. He's even invented several species, a new language, and lots of cool technology. Although the world includes some commonplace science fiction tropes such as intelligent robots and holograms, the story is never derivative. The world on WondLa will hook readers with it's fascinating world of aliens, technology, and man-eating plants.

The Search for Wondla is lengthy in size (at nearly 470 pages) and quite the book of journeys. There's a lot going on here! The story revolves around Eva Nine's quest to find other humans, but this journey takes her across the paths of several alien species, fascinating creatures, a creepy queen, and a taxidermist intent on having a human in his collection. Throughout the journey, our heroes are followed by a bounty hunter of epic proportions. Although the length of the book would be daunting to many young readers, the story never lets up and the 70 gorgeous pictures break the text into manageable pieces.

I found The Search for WondLa to be entertaining and completely engrossing. The world-building is beautifully done and feels rich and complete. As we follow a human, raised by a robot, and her two alien friends across the planet of Orbona, we ask, "What makes us human?"  Seriously - Read it. Now.

Interested in Book 2, A Hero for Wondla? Check out our review.


  1. You are so kind. Eva and I thank you.

  2. Sheena McFerran via TwitterMarch 13, 2013 at 4:27 PM

    Yeah it is amazing for sure! I picked it up at #SCBWI 2012 in Los Angeles and was floored. #writing #inspiration

  3. I loved this book so much that i got the second volume!! I love the Wondla series, and I am currently waiting for the third volume to be released! I can't wait! Although, I would like to know why the cover and some of the illustrations were changed in the re-release of volume one (I have the original hard-cover one).

    1. Tony actually has a post on his blog that addresses your question about the new cover. Basically, he feels like the new image is better because the dark colors match the mood of the story more accurately and it seems to grab a broader audience than the original image. You can check out his post at