Release Date: April 27th 2017
Publisher: Black & White Publishing
Find it on: Amazon. Goodreads.
Source: I was sent a free copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Big Bend, population 500. South Dakota, 1988. Eight-year-old Tiny Mite lives in a ramshackle farmhouse next to her grandfather’s crashed airplane and the pine tree where she trains as a spy. Goddamn is her favourite word. Taking pictures with a homemade camera is her new big thing. She lives with Bee, her apocalypse-obsessed grandmother and Luvie, her hard-drinking great-aunt. And then there’s her mother, Velvet – beautiful, heartbroken, desperate, impulsive. One night, Tiny Mite goes to the basement and hears a cry, but it’s not what she imagines and nothing will ever be the same.
Six years later, Clea won’t let anyone call her Tiny Mite anymore. Luvie is sober and Bee’s health is failing. Velvet has been gone for years, and nobody except Bee will even mention her name. Alone, angry and dressed in her grandfather’s old hunting clothes, Clea mopes through ditches and fields taking photographs until she hatches a plan with another loner, a boy with an unspeakable past.
This is a story of mothers and daughters. Of people tied by blood and home. Of moments captured and lifetimes lost. And of things never quite turning out as expected.
Welcome to my stop on the Not the Only Sky blog tour! This book is a story of family, and particularly the relationship between a mother and daughter. It was completely not what I expected, and I absolutely loved reading it. The book is set in South Dakota in a small village where most people know each other, and stay in the same village their whole life, It’s a really interesting setting, and one that really comes to life in Warren’s prose.
The thing I loved most about Not the Only Sky was the cleverly written characters. Clea (or Tiny Mite) is fascinating. She’s a quirky child, but she’s also clever and has a pretty vivid imagination. I loved her from the outset and she’s a character that has stuck with me long after I finished reading the book. The rest of the characters are also well written and memorable – Bee and Luvie are interesting ladies, and Clea’s mother Velvet is a particularly complex and mult-layered character. This book is very much focused on relationships, and it’s really a fantastic story – following the story and seeing their relationships adapt and change over time.
I read this book really quickly, mainly because I was so absorbed in the story and the characters. One of the things that I thought were particularly well done was the transition between a young Tiny Mite to a more mature Clea. I think this can often be quite difficult to do, but Warren provides a seamless transition between the perspectives, and this makes for a really rich and enjoyable story. The cover art is also absolutely beautiful, and I for one cannot wait to see what Alyssa Warren writes next – this is a thoroughly enjoyable read!
Thanks for checking out my stop on the Not the Only Sky blog tour, be sure to stop by the other bloggers listed below!