Title: Sky Song |Author: Abi Elphinstone |Publisher: Simon & Schuster |Genre: Middlegrade |273 pages
For some reason this book waited quite some time on my tbr until I finally got around to read it. Togehter with Sammie I’ve read it a few weeks ago and let me tell you, reading this book as a buddyread made it even more enjoyable. If that’s even possible.
In the snowy kingdom of Erkenwald, whales glide between icebergs, wolves hunt on the tundra and polar bears roam the glaciers. But the people of this land aren’t so easy to find. Because Erkenwald is ruled by a cruel Ice Queen and you must stay hidden or risk becoming another of her prisoners. Join Eska, a girl who breaks free from a cursed music box, and Flint, a boy whose inventions could change the fate of Erkenwald forever, as they journey together in search of an ancient, almost forgotten, song with the power to force the Ice Queen back.
This is a story about an eagle huntress, an inventor and an organ made of icicles. But it is also a story about belonging, even at the very edges of our world . . .
Isn’t this book gorgeous? I know that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover but I was positively delighted to see how incredibly pretty this little standalone by Abi Elphinstone is.
Now that we have that out of the way, I love books with a snowy, frosty setting. There is something about them that just touches something inside of me and makes me feel enchanted and cozy and thrilled at the same time. The world of Erkenwald was impressivly built by Abi Elphinstone and it was like I felt the snow and ice and cold on my skin while I was safely bundled up at home but was also given a sense of awe for might of nature and the bond people have with it.
Sky Song was…well, it was everything. It was a thrill-ride, it was a story about friendship and love, a coming-of-age story, it was full of magic and mystery too. It’s a story about hope and dreams and expectations, of believing and division and allies and friends and trust and mistrust and helping each other and so many more things. I was so enchanted and while writing this review still a little lost for words. (Also, it’s hard to talk about the plot without giving too much away.)
The book follows two main characters named Eska and Flint, with alternating chapters from their perspectives. Flint is a boy of the Fur Tribe who makes great inventions in secret and might not be the warrior his brother wants him to be but might just be what Erkenwald needs instead. He is a good-natured boy, trying to fullfill other’s expectations, always afraid to disappoint others, a dreamer, a loyal friend and loving brother.
Eska is a girl with no memories that is been held prisoner in the Ice Queen’s palace until Flint frees her by accident. She is determined to bring the tribes together and to survive despite not remembering anything and just meeting opposition everywhere. She is headstrong and believes in Erkenwald’s forgotten magic so much, that it would be hard not to root for her.
The book also features Blue, Flint’s little sister who has Down Syndrome. I think I can count the books with great Down Syndrome represenation I’ve read on one hand, so this was a nice surprise and properly done.
In discussing the book with Sammie, we also found some minor plot holes but to be honest, they didn’t really matter. Everything was rounded up nicely and whatever question we still might have had went under in the general pleasure of reading the book.
In the end, Sky Song was nothing short of amazing. I loved the world, the characters, the story. I felt at home, I felt good while reading, thrilled, amazed, everything. I even had to sneak some pages while at work, because I just couldn’t put it away. It’s a book I would highly recommend to readers young and old.