cover image When We Fly

When We Fly

Jess McGeachin. Philomel, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-593-20358-3

Lucy, a pale child with dark hair and ink-dot eyes, lives with her bespectacled single father, and delights in fixing things: “the wonky mailbox, broken watches, even Dad’s old binoculars.” When she finds a sparrow with a broken wing, she immediately names him Flap and gets to work building a project to help him fly again. Soft brushed digital art bathes Lucy’s creation in buttery light: a plane assembled from disparate parts. The core of author-illustrator McGeachin’s poignant, fantastical tale is grounded in sobering reality, as Lucy’s father helps her come to terms with the knowledge that not everything is fixable, but he also teaches her that moving forward—including, as suggested in a quiet visual arc, grieving a late family member—is possible with the support of loved ones. Back matter includes an identification guide for birds pictured, as well as advice for dealing with injured birds. Ages 4–8. [em](July) [/em]