booksofafeather: A book and candlestick, with a feather lying across the pages. (Default)
[personal profile] booksofafeather
Short review: A powerful story about the power of change, flying and dreams... unlike many "mutant stories" the magic and powers are not treated as a bad thing, except by ignorant people. It's quite violent and some people will find it triggery because there is almost constant abuse. But if you can stand that, this is a great story, that asks the question "is being normal so important to you that you would give up joy?"

Writing: Quite good... although it has a number of cheesy jokes that make it feel less serious.

From a winged person's perspective...: This is another of the books where people fly without wings, but I think that most winged people won't mind as the story is so positive in other ways. The main character is someone who longs to fly in a way that is described really well and in detail (sometimes so much detail that it feels painful to read!) and feels that the sky is her natural home. The descriptions of what it feels like to fly are very magical and will make you shiver... it becomes her most important thing very quickly and she loves to see that other people are interested in it too. Like many characters in these books she has a dream to find the secret people she belongs to. And when things get tough, she fights to defend her dreams and her friends' dreams.

Trigger warnings: Religious abuse and emotional abuse to fliers and others. Animal cruelty and torture. A character having their desire for flying abused out of them emotionally and using torture. This story also describes the feeling of longing for flight in a way that might make some people feel twitchy and needy.

More thoughts...: This book is the story of Piper, who asks all the wrong questions in her traditional religious family... who thinks about things rather than letting them go and cares for animals in a way that her family don't understand... and who can fly. This story doesn't shy from the results of that in this small, stifled society... and the results of it when the rest of the world learns about it. She soon ends up in a situation where her dreams are on the line... but her fight to protect them makes a powerful story.

This book really loves and understands flying and magic in many ways. People who feel like flying is an important part of them, and not just "something fun", will enjoy her statement that she is a "serious flyer" and how strongly she feels that she needs to fly. This book is a perfect description of that, though because it describes it so well, it ends up being painful. You might have a sympathetic back-ache after reading this.

Because the plot of the book is about crushing people's souls to make them normal, the book is also very painful as a whole. It's not an easy book to read and younger children might be upset by it. It also feels a little bit slow in the middle but picks up again. But if you feel that you're okay with a story like that, this is a great book that doesn't have that awful message found in so many books of "everything has to be normal in the end". I give it four and a half out of five, just for how much it understands.
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