|Into the Wild|
|Into the Wild.jpg|
|Publication date:||21 January 2003|
| Preceded by:|
[[Bluestar's Prophecy, Crookedstar's Promise|<Bluestar's Prophecy, Crookedstar's Promise]]
| Followed by:|
[[Fire and Ice|Fire and Ice>]]
|Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow.|
The prologue starts with RiverClan and ThunderClan battling over Sunningrocks. Oakheart, Tigerclaw and Redtail are mentioned. Also, Spottedleaf recives the prophecy 'Fire alone can save our Clan', whilst with Bluestar.
In chapter one, a kittypet called Rusty dreams of hunting a mouse. He then decides to venture into the forest. He gets attacked by a ThunderClan apprentice, Graypaw, who then tells Rusty about Clan life. The cats are unaware, however, of two other warriors watching them - Graypaw's mentor, Lionheart, and the Clan Leader, Bluestar. Bluestar then offers Rusty the chance to join ThunderClan, and gives him a day to think about it. He returns home, and talks to his kittypet friend, Smudge, who tries to discourage Rusty from joining.
The next morning, Rusty tells Lionheart and Whitestorm, who have come to recive his answer, that he will become an apprentice. He is escorted back to camp and fights Longtail because many cats disagree with having a kittypet in the Clan. Rusty wins, and the fact that his collar snaps off is an omen from StarClan; Rusty belongs in ThunderClan. Bluestar then recites the naming ceremony for apprentices, giving Rusty the name Firepaw. He gets trained by Tigerclaw and Lionheart briefly, before Bluestar takes over as his mentor.
Firepaw trains hard to try and earn the Clan's respect; most of the cats think kittypets are soft and useless. On his first solo mission, he meets - and battles - Yellowfang the ShadowClan medicine cat who had been sent into exile. He has to care for her as punishment for breaking the warrior code, and forms a strong friendship with her. Many ThunderClan cats distrust her, as she is ShadowClan, and Brokenstar hinted that she killed kits at a gathering.
Firepaw begins to become suspicious of Tigerclaw, Ravenpaw's mentor, and highly respected senior warrior. Ravenpaw witnessed the Sunningrocks battle, and tells that Tigerclaw did not kill Oakheart, who had killed Redtail, but instead Tigerclaw killed Redtail, most likely so that he could become deputy. Tigerclaw is aware that Ravenpaw knows this, and tries to make the Clan believe that Ravenpaw is a traitor to the Clan. So that Ravenpaw can be safe, Fireheart takes him to live with Barley, a loner. Firepaw says that he will tell the Clan that Ravenpaw is dead, though later tells Bluestar the truth.
Meanwhlie, Spottedleaf is killed by Clawface of ShadowClan in an attack. During the attack, Frostfur's two kits are stolen. Firepaw is devastated at the medicine cat's death, and Tigerclaw assumes that Yellowfang, who goes missing, has stolen the kits. Bluestar will not blame Yellowfang without proof, although most of the Clan believe she took the kits. Tigerclaw also makes it appear that Ravenpaw had a part in taking the kits.
Firepaw is certain that Yellowfang did not steal the kits. He and Graypaw are sent to rescue the kits from ShadowClan. Yellowfang is attempting to save the kits, and with her and Whtiestarorm's patrol's help, they rescue the kits and remove Brokenstar from his position as Clan Leader. He had intended to use the kits as warriors, although they were too young.
Firepaw and Graypaw recive their warrior names after the battle, Fireheart and Graystripe. Fireheart tries to tell Bluestar of Tigerclaws treacherousy, but she dismisses him, telling him it can wait until the morning. The book ends with the two new warriors sitting vigil over the camp.
For generations, four clans of wild cats have shared the forest according to the laws laid down by their warrior ancestors. But the ThunderClan cats are in grave danger, and the sinister ShadowClan grows stronger every day. Noble warriors are dying-and some deaths are more mysterious than others.
In the midst of this turmoil appears an ordinary house cat named Rusty...who may turn out to be the bravest warrior of them all.
- "The author has created an intriguing world with an intricate structure and mythology, and an engaging young hero. The supporting cast of players is large and a little confusing, but there are standouts who give dimension to the tale. The difficult life of a feral cat is described in some detail, and a fair amount of violence is included. The ending is left ambiguous-there is definitely more to come. This is not as elegantly written as Brian Jacques's "Redwall" series (Philomel), but it's another option for fans of animal adventure / fantasy stories."
- -Mara Alpert, School Library Journal
- "In this first spine-tingling episode in the planned Warriors series, Firepaw learns the ways of the wild life, facing many dangers and treachery both within and without his new clan. Intelligence notwithstanding, the cat characters are true to their feline nature, making this sure to appeal to fans of Clare Bell's long-popular Ratha's Creature (1983) and its sequels and also to followers of Brian Jacques' ongoing Redwall series."
- -Sally Estes, Booklist
- "Action-packed adventure. Certain to please any reader who has ever wondered what dreams of grandeur may haunt the family cat."
- -Publishers Weekly
- "A suspenseful animal adventure that will leave readers eyeing Puss a bit nervously."
- -Kirkus Reviews
|End of Spoiler Warning|