Above Us Only Sky

S. & S. Mar. 2015. 256p. ISBN 9781451657678. $25; ebk. ISBN 9781451657692. F
In this latest from Young-Stone (The Handbook for Lightning Strike Survivors), characters both past and present tell a story of the power of connection to sustain us. Prudence Vilkas, born with wings that the doctor, in effect, clips, meets her Lithuanian grandfather, the Old Man, when she is a teenager and learns the healing truth that she comes from a long line of bird women. The Old Man's own feelings of alienation, which stem from leaving his country in the wake of World War II, dissipate on a journey back to his homeland. Daina, the Old Man's winged sister, who was left behind and is scarred by the war, lost her will to live without her family but is reborn in a jail cell. And Wheaton, Prudence's visionary best friend, discovers himself through his wing-themed art.
VERDICT Young-Stone has written a novel that's both fanciful and brutally realistic, soaring as it does between angelic beings and heartless dictators. From America to Lithuania, from past to present, this is a heart-wrenching tale for literary fiction fans and particularly for readers interested in World War II.
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