Skyward was chosen as the summer read for my book club. I knew I’d read this book anyway, but I’m happy I was able to recommend this to others too because our club really enjoyed Skyward. I think Skyward is currently one of my top 3 books I’ve read this year so far. Skyward is YA science fiction at its best: big themes, growth story and great characters interacting with each other and the world around them.
You get to choose who you are. Legacy, memories of the past, can serve us well. But we cannot let them define us. When heritage becomes a box instead of an inspiration, it has gone too far.
Sanderson keeps impressing me with his way of writing and the characters he creates. It was such joy to read this Skyward and I can’t wait to read the next one.
Humans, possibly the last ones, are left on a planet where they pretty much live in underground societies. The caves provide shelter from hostile attacks of the Krell, an alien species, and the only way to fight back is with their hero pilots who risk everything every time they go up to fight the Krell ships away. The pilots are the elite heroes, worshiped by the citizens; except for the one pilot who was branded a traitor and a coward. That was Spensa’s father and that’s pretty much the start of this growth story. Spensa is a teenage girl who has been labeled as the traitor’s daughter for most of her life. Her one dream is to fly and she is determined to get to the flight school. Eventually she is accepted, but has to prove herself over and over again that she is not like her father.
Spensa is this aggressive, mouthy teenager who will soon learn that there are much bigger things at stake than just getting to be a pilot and proving everyone wrong about her father. There is death, there is bonding, there is humiliation, there is newly learned humbleness and all those big feelings when a teenager starts to see shades of grey in stead of just black and white. And of course there are secrets to be unveiled, but I won’t spoil them here. The book is such a dynamic adventure and I can only admire how well Sanderson writes the fast paced action scenes. The main characters are such an interesting group of young people, growing together into a tightly knit flight. I enjoyed the balance between very serious, sad moments and the many funny, humorous moments.
Also, since I lost my father when I was 11 years old, I found the theme of losing a parent/putting them on a pedestal very interesting. Spensa has idolized her father and when new information comes up, she is forced to accept that perhaps her memories of her father weren’t the absolute truth. Memories get mixed up with our own ideals and recognizing these can bring big moments of growth.
Skyward fills these prompts from the two Reading Challenges I’m doing this year:
A book about the future (Helmet Reading Challenge)
A book with a robot, cyborg, or AI character (Popsugar Reading Challenge)