The Great Weather Diviner: The Untold Origin of Punxsatawney Phil- Book Review

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I absolutely love books that spark conversation. Books that will not only engage young readers, but also educate them and make them think. The Great Weather Diviner: The Untold Origin of Punxsatawney Phil does exactly that…and it does it so well. Not only is this book a new take on the legend of Punxsatawney Phil, but it is an epic adventure story, it is a story of community, it is about the power we each have within us to bring forth change, and it is a dedicated story about being environmentally conscious. Let’s chat!

The Great Weather Diviner: The Untold Origin of Punxsatawney Phil

I wanted to start off by sending a huge thank you to the publisher for reaching out to me about this book…and sending along a copy and some lovely goodies! As always, all opinions are my own!

I absolutely adore middle-grade books! So when I learned that not only was this an adventure/fantasy book…but it also had themes of environmentalism…I knew I had to read it. I love books that educate. But…what I love even more…is when a book educates kids in a way that reaches them and isn’t preachy. The Great Weather Diviner has a powerful message of environmentalism and being environmentally conscious…but it is so beautifully woven into the fabric of the story and doesn’t feel forced at all. It will leave your kiddos feeling inspired and that they can make a difference! This book is also a fractured fairy tale of sorts…a fractured legend. We are getting an origin story of Punxsatawney Phil that is full of charming animal characters, incredible fantasy, coming of age, and adventure. So much to love within the pages of the book!

Book Synopsis

The Great Weather Diviner: The Untold Origin of Punxsatawney Phil is the story of Junior, a young groundhog who has to stop a weather catastrophe. Junior is the son of the mayor of Punxsatawney…a man who junior has always looked up to. When a terrible flood strikes his home town, Junior sets out on a journey to find some answers and seek out the truth about what is happening in his town. He needs to save his town from the evil raven overlord Callidus. He knows that the best way to do this is to seek the help of The Guardians…a group of legendary super-powered animals from his childhood stories who have always promised to help those who need it.

Along with his new friend, a hedgehog inventor named Jill, Junior begins his journey and starts to discover things he never expected. He is uncovering secrets and truths about his ancestors and their actions. Junior begins to learn more about climate change and the environment as well as the weight of legacy and responsibility. Can Junior risk everything to save his home?

My Thoughts

As I mentioned above…I really loved this book. I think authors Rob Long and Andrew Dolberg have written an incredible book that will not only take kids on an epic adventure but will also really inform them about the critical issues facing our environment. Their passion for environmentalism is so apparent in the pages of the book and they have crafted a wonderful educational tool in this book! They tackled climate change, reliance on coal, deforestation and so much more within these pages.

I really loved the message that we are all capable of creating progress in the world. We can reflect on mistakes from the past and can strive toward a better future. Change can start with just one person…or groundhog…and they can make such a huge difference.

I would absolutely recommend this book to your middle-grade readers. This would be a great book to open up conversations on legends, the heroes journey, and definitely environmentalism. I am sure there will be schools that will challenge this book…the “global warming doesn’t exist crew”…especially in places like my home state of Florida where they like to ignore and erase important issues…but that just means booknerds like myself will just have to celebrate the book even louder!

For More Information

For more information on The Great Weather Diviner: The Untold Origin of Punxsatawney Phil, to see some amazing merch, and for more information on the authors you can head over to their website!

The Great Weather Diviner publishes on November 7th, 2023 and is available for pre-order!

Happy reading!

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