Finding Sky by Joss Sterling
Author: Joss Sterling Website|Twitter
Published: 6 October 2010 (Oxford University Press)
Format: Kindle e-book
Buy the paperback: Amazon|BookDepository
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Plot Summary (from Goodreads):
When Sky catches a glimpse of Zed for the first time, lounging against his motorbike at school, she is drawn to him just like every other girl in Wickenridge. But Zed sees something special in her that the other girls don’t have.
Finding Sky is a book I'd had my eye on for a while and when it became available for 99p in a Kindle sale I knew it had to be mine. It follows the story of Sky Bright who has moved from the UK to the small town of Wickenridge in the mountains of America. There she meets Zed, one of the mysterious Benedict brothers and learns there's a lot more to him, and to herself, than meets the surface.
I really loved Sky and the opening chapters of the book where we get to know her were definitely some of my favourites. She's had a very traumatic past, long parts of which she has no memory of. We learn there was a time when she wouldn't speak, and that she doesn't remember her original name. All that mystery about her and how much she's had to deal with definitely added to the intrigue. Aside from all that I just loved her as a person. Sky is musical, playing a number of instruments, which is something I always love seeing in a character because I was very musical in my teens so that's a kind of character I can relate to.
The culture clash elements of the book as Sky adjusts from British life to American life was definitely a highlight in Finding Sky because it was freaking hilarious. I probably appreciated that British take on America because I am British, and I loved all those little Brit references and in-jokes I could pick up on. It was really cool to see the American school system, with its cheerleaders and baseball teams, written from the perspective of an outsider. On a more serious note I really loved the setting of the book. The descriptions of the mountains and ski resorts had me completely immersed and made for perfect escapism.
Sky ends up catching the eye of school bad boy Zed, one of seven brothers. He was definitely an intriguing character! He starts off quite rude and brash and I wasn't sure I was going to warm to him, because I am usually all about the good guy. As the story moved on and I learnt a bit more about him, however, I really warmed to him. There was certainly a lot of mystery about him and I found myself wanting to know more, and his softer side came out in the second half of the book. The relationship between Zed and Sky starts out kind of love/hate which I really wasn't sure about at first, but in the end I think it actually worked out well because it showed Sky wasn't going to take any rubbish from him! I was happy that she waited to get to know him a little better and suss him out before giving him a chance.
The book's more supernatural elements are introduced quite gradually so it's hard to know how much to say without giving anything away. We know from very early on that Sky can read auras and that Zed has these mysterious powers that Sky just can't get her head around. I did really like this element of the book and the story of Zed and his family, and I'd loved exploring each of the seven brothers and their abilities. The world building was done really well and I didn't feel overwhelmed by terminology or anything.
I spent the first half of the book revelling in the characters and enjoying the humour in the writing, but the book really became more action packed later on and I liked that switch in pace. There was plenty of exciting scenes and mystery as Sky tries to learn more about her life. The climax of the story was definitely gripping.
Finding Sky was an enjoyable read with great characters and beautiful writing that really conjured up the writing and surroundings.The rest of the series appears to focus on each of one of the seven Benedict brothers which sounds really intriguing so I'm excited to read the next book.
What to read next: Challenging Zed by Joss Sterling, a novella from Zed's POV, Stealing Phoenix by Joss Sterling, the next book in the series
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