Saturday, April 16, 2016

Book Review: Flying Away by Caroline A. Gill

Flying Away


Caroline A. Gill


When Iolani Bearse was five years old, she lost her father to war. When she was nine, her mother died in a freak car accident. When Lani was fourteen, eerie green lights invaded, tearing her from the only home she had left.

Living as a runaway, dragging a horse and her cousin Eleanor across the countryside, Lani must learn to survive. Now Lani is the only person between the horrible, greedy lights and the last bit of family she has left. Her own heart is barely beating, but powerful memories pull her to Malcolm St. John. She fights what she feels, buried deep within her shattered soul.

Malcolm St. John always held his feelings in, especially about Iolani. So when she shows up on his doorstep, desperate and determined, Mal must decide if the wild tales she spins are the fragments of insanity or the last hope for a dying nation. This Lani is different from the child he knew. Something is coming for her, for him, and will not be stopped

If the cousins and Malcolm can’t escape the grasping hunters who hound them, the future of a broken America will be destroyed. Everything Lani has ever loved will burn with them. Somehow, she must find a path through friendship and loyalty to save them all.



Can we talk about this gorgeous cover for a minute? Very alluring and original. The author did this herself! Apparently she's a talented artist as well!

I had heard about this book before it was published and the story piqued my interest so I bought the ebook. Then, I happened to win a paperback copy through a give away! Woohoo!

I was a little disappointed in the beginning. The whole opening scene is very abstract. I wasn't sure why Lani was doing the things she was doing. One minute she's lying in bed taking to flies, then she sees her cousin sneaking out into the woods so she decides to follow her. (Okay, intriguing) Then Lani suddenly starts having a panic attack. What brought this on is kind of a mystery and I was bored as she was describing it.Since I didn't know what had caused her to freak out, I couldn't be scared with her. Then suddenly Lani swallows a fly and gets "Fly Girl" super powers. Pretty cool.  - Except that we never get any insight to how she feels about suddenly turning into "Fly Girl". Is she scared? Is she excited? Is she angry because she just ate one of her fly friends? Absolutley no emotions. Just a descriptive narrative of what is happening. Also, once the phenomenon disappears, it is never mentioned again or happens again for another 100 pages!

The story definitely picks up once she hits the road with her cousin and horse, traveling across the country. The scenario didn't seem very realistic, but it did have a great dystopian vibe that I have been craving lately. I believe Caroline A. Gill is a talented writer. She's great with metaphors and has a very descriptive narrative. The ending pretty much left me satisfied, but I was a little let down when there was no set up or hook for the sequel that comes out later this year.

What this story is lacking is a good content editor to fill in the gaps and plot holes. I feel like with a little more development Flying Away could have been great. It's definitely worth a read if you like stories that blur the lines of the imagination and show you concepts you've never seen before. Like magical flies!

2.5 stars
* * * 

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