The fictional tale is told in alternating chapters - some from the point of view of 12 year old Lindy who lives off the grid with her PTSD-plagued father and some following police officer Jessica Villareal, a grandmother already at 38 who is estranged from her 19 year old daughter, as she responds to the call that a transient preteen has been seen in the woods.
Lindy’s chapters are spare yet haunting as she describes her life in the forest as well as her “capture” and subsequent ordeal. In some ways, Lindy is mature beyond her years, in others, completely naïve and Shortridge absolutely pulls off the voice. That Jessica’s chapters feel so completely different – down to earth yet pulsating with that mix of frustration and compassion that adulthood brings – is a testament to Shortridge’s skill.
Oddly, though Lindy’s chapters are first person and Jessica’s are third, I felt I got to know Jessica much better. Lindy remains a bit elusive, much like the blue herons she so loved to catch a glimpse of.
I enjoyed this one immensely and highly recommend it to those who like modern day stories with fully fleshed characters and a compelling storyline.
WHEN SHE FLEW is available in paperback now. Find out more about it on the author’s website.
This review is part of the TLC blog tour for WHEN SHE FLEW. See other stops on the tour at the TLC website.
I have one signed copy of the book up for grabs - to enter for it, simply tell me what news story you think would make a good jumping off point for a novel. Since it's coming directly from the author, this one is US and Canada only and I'll keep it open until 11:59 PM CST on January 11th.