Aza Ray is struggling – to breath. Every since she was about a year old, and suddenly developed a serious problem with breathing, Aza’s life has seemed an endless series of trips to the E.R. and hospitals, where doctors struggle to figure out what on earth is Aza’s problem. In fact, they can’t find another person alive like her, and have named her condition, after her!
Aza tries as best she can to be “normal,” but seems to fail. She wasn’t supposed to make to 10 let alone almost 16. But here she is, just a few days shy of that big milestone. She has a great family, two supportive parents, a crazy fun younger sister and a great friend, Jason. Jason, who, just like her family, is trying everything possible to keep her living just a little bit longer.
One day at school, not long before her birthday, Aza sees something in the sky that she can’t explain, as much as she’d like to be able to. Her family think it must be the results of all the medications she is taking, but as she talks to Jason about it – he gives her another possible explanation. An explanation that sounds almost as out of this world as what she saw.
Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley is a new idea in young adult books, and a nice departure from the constant barrage of dystopian literature from the last few years. Aza will captive readers as she searches to understand what really makes a person “fit” in.
Recommended for 8th graders and up.