This little gem of a book is part science fiction, part paranormal adventure and part dystopian.
Piper McCloud could float from when she was a baby, but as she grows up, she decides to cultivate her "special ability", and she painstakingly teaches herself to fly. However, this ends up only in earning her the disapproval of her simple farmer (but loving) parents, and the fear and prejudice of their small community.
Enter a charming lady from a special government school for such "special" children, and with her, Piper's only hope of companionship and finally fitting in.
However, things are not as they seem, and as we enter the school with Piper, we get to know the other children with their gifts (one can run incredibly fast, another is extremely strong physically and another -my favorite character in the whole book- is an exceptional genious.)
There is beauty and horror within the walls of the school, as there is light and darkness in this story.
I was completely blown away.
The analogy of someone being different in a small society, was very well played in the book. It doesn't matter whether you are good different or bad, you are just unacceptable. And, it turns out, not only by the small society that may be narrow-minded, but by the whole world.
Unfortunately, this is the truth of the world we live in:
If you are in any way different, if you are special, better than others and determined to reach when no one has before you, people will not accept you. They will fear you instead. And push you away with all their might.
This was shown in the book in an incredibly lyrical and tender way, yet totally realistically too.
There is no element of romance in the book -or very little- but there is real love in here, love that accepts you for who you are without questions, love that understands your differences, love that can change the world.
And, finally, love that will fight against injustice and pain to the very last.
This book is supposed to be for younger adults, and teens, but I think that's not the appropriate age group for it. It contains some harsh realitites and realistic scenes, so if a teen is rather sheltered, they may be shocked by this book. I actually read some negative reviews to that effect on Amazon.
I, personally, wish all the adults I know could read and understand this book (not just read it as a fairytale, but as a study into the darkness of human nature.)
I wish more books like this existed.
If you are one of those people who can fly in a world filled with rooted-to-the-earth, walking-on-the-ground persons, then this book is for you.