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Reviewed by Michaela Gordoni for Readers' Favorite
Embracing the Clouds: The Dreams and Adventures of Children from the Bowl World is the first book in a children’s fantasy series by Indonesian author, R.D. Villam. There are children living in a place without adults. The children wear leaves for clothes, live in a treehouse, and survive on fruit. They live in isolation with the exception of a strange figure who they call Grandpa. Grandpa has explained to them that the place they live in is like a bowl and that there are other worlds beyond it. One day, the children decide to take a journey to investigate the worlds outside. Their journey takes them through a cave with a green-eyed creature to a strange place with bigger people, horses, and houses. In their exhilarating expedition, the children encounter giant birds, kidnapping, a talking fire, and the truth about themselves.
Embracing the Clouds: The Dreams and Adventures of Children from the Bowl World is similar to the Wizard of Oz series. It is fantastical, and the environment is constantly changing. You never know what to expect next. It is an adventure fantasy with innocents and villains. I enjoyed the unique concepts and imagination within. It is a very unusual children’s book, and it is rare to read a modern-day book written the way this one is. R.D. Villam has created a fantasy book that is in a different league than most 21st-century children’s novels. There are themes that might frighten younger children. I would not recommend it to anyone below the age of 12.