Published by Viking Books for Young Readers on May 30, 2013
Jennifer is an only child, and so were her parents—at least that's what she thinks, until she finds an old photo in the back of one of her mother's books. The woman in the photo looks just like Jennifer, down to the smattering of freckles across her nose. And her mother refuses to talk about it.
Compelled to find answers, Jennifer embarks on a quest that takes her from the wheat fields of Nebraska to the fishing town of Smithport, Maine, home to the one person who can help her solve this family secret—the woman in the photo. But Jennifer learns that it takes the entire village of Smithport to piece together the story of her mother's hidden past. She needs help from Nathan, the genius with the reluctant smile from across the cove; Little, the elderly town matriarch and former movie star; and The Jacks, three weathered fishermen who dabble in pyrotechnics. As Jennifer discovers the lost chapters of her mother's life, she unwittingly begins to write a few chapters of her own.
Elegantly written, On Little Wings is an evocative debut novel about self discovery, first love, and the power of family.
On Little Wings was a fantastic read. I don’t always enjoy a lot of realistic fiction, but I love a good one when I find one. Jennifer didn’t realize she has an aunt until a picture falls out of a one of her mother’s books. What follows is a decision to find out more about her and why the two sisters are estranged. More than just a family history story, this is a story of first loves and full of interesting characters who I fell in love with. I love the chemistry between all the characters and especially in the small town her mother is originally from.
Possibly my favorite character is Nathan, he’s complex and not perfect but there’s just something about him. He draws Jennifer in and makes her want to stay the whole summer. They have their ups and downs and he’s definitely very loyal to his family and wants to do the best by them. I love their nights of sharing quotes, such cute and sweet moments where Jennifer tries to read cues to how he feels about her.
There are many other fun and interesting characters like the Jacks – three guys not actually named Jack and Little who was a movie star and is an old woman who causes quite a stir throughout the story.
I really love how everything came together and the story was just a heartfelt and beautiful one.
A beautifully told story of family secrets, first loves, and small towns.