Blue Sky by Brian Kindall
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Titular character, Blue Sky, is the daughter of an alpinist and a dream, and was orphaned as a baby.
Old Stone, an ibex, witnessed her father’s death and her mother’s fading, and took the child in, though against the convention of the ibex, who do not believe humans belong in their world. He’s joined by Nan, an ibex who just lost her child to an eagle, and together they raise the child as their own.
She’s kind, strong, curious, and being half dream, is able to survive the harsh winters without fear of freezing and the rough terrain without fear of falling.
The herd kicks Blue Sky out when the males return for the winter, and Sky, Old Stone, and Nan set off on their own.
But Sky isn’t quite of their world, and she longs to find her place. She meets her dreamer, a young boy who is a snowflake like no other, and she finds the world is much bigger than the mountains she grew up in.
Beautifully written, this reads like literary fiction to me (though, admittedly, I don’t read in that genre). There’s an airy, dreamlike quality to the prose that lets you drift through most of the story (which is great for bedtime reading). Sky is a strong and curious character that’s easy to root for.
A couple of notes:
Sky said “oh” quite a bit. Reading this out loud, it became a bit redundant after a while, though not enough to totally distract from the story.
Also, I found I wasn’t terribly fond of the ending. Though it showed Sky’s strength, she never really made her decision, not fully. It was kind of made for her. She didn’t accomplish her one goal, and instead seemed to wander from the very possibility as it presented itself in the end. I felt myself wanting for something a little more solid, and a little more satisfying than what I got.
Otherwise, an entertaining read and a sweet story for young readers (or anyone who enjoys character-driven, literary fiction).
**This book is entirely clean, though Sky is essentially naked for the majority of the book.