When angels start falling from the sky, it seems like the world is ending. Smashing down to earth at extraordinary speeds, wings bent, faces contorted, not a single one has survived.
As the world goes wild for angels, Jaya’s father uproots the family to Edinburgh, intent on catching one alive. But Jaya can’t stand his obsession and, still reeling from her mother’s recent death, and the sudden disappearance of her ex-girlfriend, she’s determined to stay out of it.
Then something incredible happens: An angel lands right at Jaya’s feet – and it’s alive…
Sophie Cameron’s Out of the Blue is a B-E-A-UTIFUL debut.
I genuinely cannot believe it’s a debut novel – it’s a masterpiece of Young Adult fiction; warm, comforting, and deeply, deeply moving. AND SET IN EDINBURGH.
Okay, so I LOVE Scottish YA. I particularly love Scottish YA set in my familiar haunts – so I HAD to buy this book. I LOVED following Jaya on her journey. I could see her flat; I could stand with her on Arthur’s Seat; I could follow her to McEwan Hall, and wander the Botanic Garden with her. Cameron’s Edinburgh is an ethereal version of the city I know, and there is something wonderful about reading an Edinburgh that is laced with magic. I could not think of a better place to set such a beautiful tale. If you like Scottish YA, this book is a MUST.
Jaya is a wonderful narrator – sarcastic and hot-tempered, but warm, and protective. Her inability to come to terms with her mother’s death is subtly wound into her narrative style; we empathise with her emotional instability, and desperate need for companionship, from the novel’s opening.
But, for me, the story itself is the highlight of Cameron’s novel. It is b r e a t h t a k i n g. On the surface, Out of the Blue is a novel about fallen angels. But, without wanting to spoil it, there is far more beneath that ethereal surface. It is a novel focused on navigating grief; a path always handled differently. Some are volatile, some despairing, some engrossed in pursuits that serve as a distraction. But one pursuit unites all of Cameron’s characters: the pursuit of hope. And in the angel that lands at Jaya’s feet, we find that hope. Though each character is plagued with loss, and contemplating defeat, in that angel there is something worth fighting for, and something worth protecting. It’s the presentation of this hope, and the way that it nests in your heart, that is the real reason you should read Out of the Blue.
Though Cameron’s debut is often funny (the landlady introduced in the opening chapter is a hilariously sweet addition to the book), if you’re prone to tears, I would have tissues on hand, because this novel is EMOTIONAL. The ending is so moving I thought my heart was going to burst.
All in all, this is a beautiful debut, and I’m SO excited to see what Cameron has in store for future novels.
Thank you for reading!