Saturday, March 6, 2010

Wings by Aprilynne Pike

Book Details
Wings by Aprilynne Pike
Hardcover, 294 pages
2009, HarperTeen
ISBN: 0061668036
Series: Book 1 of Wings

Homeschooled Laurel begins public high school as a tenth grader when her adoptive parents move to LA., leaving behind the land that has been in her mother's family since the Gold Rush days. The many clues that Laurel is different (she is strictly vegan; sunlight seems to shine through her fair skin; she never gets cold; she craves the outdoors; she doesn't menstruate) culminate in a bump on her back growing to the size of a softball and blooming into a flower that has foot-long petals. Returning to her parents' land, she meets Tamini, a faerie to whom she is attracted, who tells her that she is not human, but rather is a plant or, more specifically, a faerie. David, her accepting and supportive classmate, tests her tissue and confirms that Tamini is right. When a creepy alleged realtor pressures the family to sell the land, the teens become suspicious, and they are soon fighting for their lives in a centuries-old battle between faeries and trolls. Laurel's struggles to figure out what it means to be human are matched by her struggles to determine what it means to be a faerie, and she is torn between love for David and love for Tamini.

Wings was completely different than I had expected; different from any faerie story that I've ever read, really. Its fresh new look at faeries was completely fascinating. Aprilynne Pike took a faerie's known affinity for nature and used it to weave a story somehow both less and more mystical than the known origins of the creatures.

Laurel's reactions to the changes in her body seem almost painfully real. Her fear was honest and as a reader you could feel her anxiety as if it was your own. Even her love triangle had understandable problems. How do you chose between the boy who is everything you thought you were and the boy who is everything you never knew was possible? I find that love triangles are more believable when I can't even chose one for the character and Wings is definitely one of those books where there is no "right" choice.

A short bit in the middle of the book explained some faerie history and featured a few typical, go-to fantasy characters. While everyone loves to see old favorites featured in new ways, I found it almost disappointing given the utter originality of this novel. It's a minor complaint, but it stopped me in my tracks. I had to put the book down and wonder why did the author decide to take this route. I can only hope that it's part of the bigger picture of the series and I just don't see the significance of it yet.

I was highly impressed by Wings. It is based on an intriguing premise that absolutely shines in its presentation. Future installments of the series are coming and I for one can't wait to see this new take on faeries flourish.


Aprilynne Pike's


  1. I've seen really mixed reviews on this book - people either seem to love it or hate it. Glad you're in the 'love it' camp! I may need to read it :)

  2. I've been meaning to read this book. I've also read mixed reviews, but I figured I might as well give it a go.

  3. I loved this book too!! It was my first faerie book and it totally opened my eyes to a new way of thinking about the Fey. Glad you liked it!

  4. I liked this one too. I don't read a lot of faerie books because I'm more of a werewolf and vampire girl but this is one series I'll continue.

  5. This definitely sounds like an interesting take on faeries - one I can't say I have ever heard of before. I'm definitely intrigued.

  6. I've never been a huge fan of faerie books, but this one is waiting for me on my shelf. Thanks for the great review!

  7. I LOVE this book and can't wait for Spells :)

  8. I really enjoyed this book also :) Glad you liked it!

  9. love the cover. btw, I've never read a faerie books! and wow david tested her tissues.