THE SIMPLE ART OF FLYING
Middle Grade, Aladdin Books/Simon & Schuster, 2019
Quirky characters, plucky humor, and a heartwarming message come together in this big-hearted debut novel about friendship and the true meaning of family.
Sometimes flying means keeping your feet on the ground…
Born in a dismal room in a pet store, Alastair the African grey parrot dreams of escape to bluer skies. He’d like nothing more than to fly away to a palm tree with his beloved sister, Aggie. But when Aggie is purchased by twelve-year-old Fritz, and Alastair is adopted by elderly dance-enthusiast and pie-baker Albertina Plopky, the future looks ready to crash-land.
In-between anxiously plucking his feathers, eating a few books, and finding his own poetic voice, Alastair plots his way to a family reunion. But soon he’s forced to choose between the life he’s always dreamed of and admitting the truth: that sometimes, the bravest adventure is in letting go.
*A Parents' Choice Silver Award Winner
"Warmhearted, delightfully quirky, and believable." —Kirkus Reviews
"Reminiscent of The One and Only Ivan’s storytelling, Leonardo has crafted a tale that will have readers rooting for each character . . . A witty animal-centered story that will remind readers that families come in many shapes and sizes." —School Library Journal
"This is a book about animals, friendship, and love, but mostly about how everyone needs to be loved and needed, whether they are an animal or a human." —School Library Connection