Author: Lucy Christopher
Publisher: Chicken House
Publication Date: 4th January 2010
While visiting her father in hospital, thirteen-year-old Isla meets Harry, the first boy to understand her and her love of the outdoors. But Harry is ill, and as his health fails, Isla is determined to help him in the only way she knows how. Together they watch a lone swan struggling to fly on the lake outside Harry's window. Isla believes that if she can help the damaged swan, somehow she can help Harry. And in doing so, she embarks upon a breathtakingly magical journey of her own.
Flyaway is the first book I read by Lucy Christopher. I've heard her debut novel, Stolen, was amazing and I'm really looking forward to reading that sometime!
13 year-old Isla and her dad love watching the swans when the arrive every winter. But this winter is different. Some of the swans have been killed on a power line, and the rest have moved on. When Isla's father collapses unexpectedly, she fears of what's to come. Especially since she hasn't found where the rest of the swans have gone. Then Isla meets Harry Brambling. Together, it's not long until they find a lonely swan near the hospital and manage to change each other's lives.
I think what really hooked me in was the main protagonist, Isla. She has a clear voice that is realistic, engaging and caring. She has such a warm, innocent air to her that I loved. Selfless and supportive. Despite the traumatic experiences she's going through with her father being so ill, Isla demonstrates the utmost maturity and manages to keep the peace, drawing the reader in and getting their sympathy. Though in my eyes, it was Harry who truly shined. I almost forgot that he was ill half the time, because of his high-spirited attitude and lively nature. The blossoming relationship Isla and Harry share is innocent; watching it all evolve is sweet. And it's nice to see a change from the usual teen romances!
The connection they have with the swan brings them closer together and adds more depth, as well as their fascination to the lone swan being so unique.
The swan played a big part in the story and I'm in awe about how Christopher pulled that off. I have to say it's a pretty unusual storyline, but it really works. The concept was touching and compelling.
I really connected with Flyaway. I'd read it again and again and I don't think I could ever get bored. Chistopher's writing is like that of a poet, lyrical, her prose full of sadness and subtlety. Beautifully crafted. The novel will fly you away into another world, a world of enchantment. Flyaway is a novel filled to the brim with magic, hope, and love.
Thank you to C at Chicken House for sending this to me.
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