Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley
Release Date: April 28th, 2015
Publisher: Harper Collins
“If you look at the sky that way, it’s this massive shifting poem, or maybe a letter, first written by one author, and then, when the earth moves, annotated by another. So I stare and stare until, one day, I can read it.”
For as long as she can remember, Aza Ray has been dying. Drowning in thin air as she calls it, from a mysterious lung disease that has plagued her since infancy. Her disease makes it hard for her to breathe, but even harder for her to live like a normal girl.
When Aza spots a ship sailing in the sky, she thinks she’s lost her marbles. Her family believes her hallucinations to be an unfortunate side effect of her medication, but Aza isn’t so sure. She hears something, someone, calling her name from the ship.
The only person in her corner is her best friend Jason who has always been by her side. The boy who she might harbor more than simple friendly feelings for, but before anything can be done on that front, Aza is lost to our world and finds herself in another, Magonia.
Souring high above the clouds in a land of trading ships, Aza is no longer dying and weak. She can breathe. She can live. Better than she ever has before. Now she is full of power and strength, just in time for an impending war. Magonia and Earth are close to a reckoning and the whole fate of humanity lies in Aza’s hands—including Jason who will do anything to get her back.
I was expecting a lot from this book and I think I was let down slightly. I felt like there was a lot left out of the story. I didn’t get enough about Magonia and how it started out as a civilization. I didn’t even get a full sense of their rules and customs. Despite this, there is a lot of room for a second book. Things are left a bit open ended and the door is definitely open for a sequel. The book itself is beautiful. The storyline is heart breaking but also exhilarating because it breathes new life into what it means to be alive. Aza was a great character to read and experience. She was strong and resilient, funny and kind. She knew her limitations and didn’t wallow in her existence. When she reaches Magonia, things are complicated. She misses her family and Jason, but there is something bigger happening than just her transition. I wanted more from the book, I think overall. I felt like I heard so much about it and when I finally got to it, I wasn’t sure how I should feel about the book because I was missing some elements. I enjoyed the book, but I felt like it was missing something overall.
Rating: 4 Stars