'Willodeen' Book Club Read-Along Day 3!By: OwlCrate Jr Photo By: @she_who_reads_
Welcome back friends, to the final day of our book club read-along for OwlCrate Jr's September book, Willodeen by Katherine Applegate!
Just a reminder that this will be a SPOILER FILLED discussion for Chapters 28 to the end of Willodeen.
Discussion questions are listed below, and anyone who participates in the comments will be entered to win a free OwlCrate Jr box! We’ll be selecting three winners this time around, so make sure you join in for each post!
The story concludes...
Willodeen and Connor try their best to dig for peacock snails, but it’s nearly impossible. So instead, they decide to get Quinby to do the work! Connor makes her a little harness and it turns out she is a fantastic snail digger.
As the days go by Quinby gets bigger and bigger and Connor eventually has to make her a larger harness. One day while taking Quinby (hidden in a wheelbarrow) to the grove of blue willows where they hunt for peacock snails, they notice that there are three hummingbears in the trees! The first that have been spotted in ages. Willodeen asks Connor not to tell anyone yet - she needs to figure out why the hummingbears are in these trees but not in any others. They also need to figure out what to do with Quinby; they can’t push her around in a wheelbarrow forever. The hunters might spot her!
That night Willodeen again has a nightmare about the fire that killed her family. Luckily Birdie and Mae are there to comfort her. She thinks she smells smoke but Birdie and Mae do not, so they leave her to try to go back to sleep.
The next day Willodeen takes Quinby and Duuzuu back to the hidden grove of trees and they find there are now seven hummingbears! They seem to be nesting in the trees closest to the water, which are also the trees that Quinby likes to dig under for food. Willodeen wonders why. Curious, Willodeen takes samples of leaves from all the trees, and even collects leaves from trees that are not blue willows. Back at home she lays out all the leave and borrowing one of Duuzuu’s recently blown bubbles (which hummingbears use to make nests) she tries to stick it to all the leaves, but it slides right off. That is until she gets to the leaves from the two trees that Quinby likes to dig under - the bubble sticks!
Willodeen runs to town to find Connor and tell him about her discovery, but just as she arrives the wind shifts and a fire erupts on the hill, coming down towards town! Willodeen runs back to the cottage for Birdie, Mae, Duuzuu and Quinby. Her home. She meets Birdie and Mae on the path to the cottage, but in their rush to find Willodeen they left the door open and now Quinby is nowhere to be found!
Willodeen leaves Mae and Birdie at the cottage just in case Quinby comes back, and heads back to town to find Connor and make sure he is okay. All the townspeople are working together to stop the fire some taking over, and after finding Connor, Willodeen joins in the efforts. By the end of the night the winds have died down and the fire is embers. Luckily there wasn’t a lot of damage and no one was hurt.
The next morning while Connor and Willodeen are our looking for Quinby, Willodeen explains her discovery. She is pretty sure the hummingbears are nesting in the trees that Quinby eats under because she is keeping the population of the peacock snails under control, which seems to have a positive effect on the trees. They head back into town and decide to attend the post-fire council meeting. They are celebrating how everyone worked together to keep the town safe and everyone is feeling optimistic. When it is Willodeen’s time to speak (and they nearly don’t let her!) she explains how the hummingbears need blue willows and screechers to survive. That all three depend on one another.
Eventually the town makes a committee, of which Willodeen is a junior member, to fix the problem of the hummingbears. They incentivize hunters from other towns to safely catch and relocate screechers to Perchance, and although there is still no Faire that year, the next year there re enough hummingbears to welcome back the tourists. On the final night of the Faire, Willodeen helps Connor pack up his puzzlers and after they decide to go back to the secret grove of blue willows.Quinby was trapped and released in a different part of the forest and she finds a cozy den by some blue willows she remembers from before. All of a sudden she smells some other creatures, familiar and safe smells! She let’s out a loud screech. Her first one ever and it sure feels good.
- Did Willodeen make you more curious about how communities in nature co-exist? Do you happen to know of any nature communities that co-exist in our world? (I happen to know that carrots love growing under tomato plants because they provide shade and tomatoes have a natural insecticide that targets pests that like carrots! How cool is that?)
- In the end, Perchance really came together as a community of people alongside their nature community! Which creatures would you love to be able to have a close community with that maybe wouldn't be a great idea in real life?
- If you could have another story with any of the characters in Willodeen, who would you like to see the perspective of?
Thank you, everyone for joining in our book club!