Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Release Date: October 23, 2012
Astrid Jones desperately wants to confide in someone, but her mother's pushiness and her father's lack of interest tell her they're the last people she can trust. Instead, Astrid spends hours lying on the backyard picnic table watching airplanes fly overhead. She doesn't know the passengers inside, but they're the only people who won't judge her when she asks them her most personal questions . . . like what it means that she's falling in love with a girl.
As her secret relationship becomes more intense and her friends demand answers, Astrid has nowhere left to turn. She can't share the truth with anyone except the people at thirty thousand feet, and they don't even know she's there. But little does Astrid know just how much even the tiniest connection will affect these strangers' lives--and her own--for the better.
In this truly original portrayal of a girl struggling to break free of society's definitions, Printz Honor author A.S. King asks readers to question everything--and offers hope to those who will never stop seeking real love.
Okay, so to be fair this is my first novel from A.S. King, and I had heard so many great things about her I might have set my expectations too high. This was a conventional story with some magic elements. Some of the magic elements like the sending love up to the airplanes was beyond awesome. The concept is so easy, and yet I find it brilliant. And inserting little excerpts of different passengers was stupendous. Yet some others, like Frank S., were weird.
Astrid's struggle was confusing at best. The philosophy bits scattered throughout the book were amazing. But something about the story being so regular and yet being played to be such a drama, bored me. Something didn't quite click with me as much as the rest, because even though I loved some parts, as a whole, it did not leave an impression.
The unusual way everything is presented, the unconventional family, with the extreme shyness and quiet factor that Astrid has, all together confused me. But the ending and how important themes are not only brought up, but thought-provoking, made this worth the read. It may have been something about the theme having been thoroughly explored before in books like Boy Meets Boy, in a way more interesting and creative plot, or maybe just the fact that the small town was meant to feel like we went back in time instead of a real modern small town. Either way, it was not a great book for me and I'm really sad about it.
You don't have to listen to me though, because hundreds of Goodreads users have highly rated and praised this novel, so I invite you to read some of those reviews here.
Goodreads / Amazon