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1, Magonia

This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.


Maria Dahvana Headley's soaring YA debut is a fiercely intelligent, multilayered fantasy where Neil Gaiman's Stardust meets John Green's The Fault in Our Stars in a story about a girl caught between two worlds . . . two races . . . and two destinies.

Aza Ray Boyle is drowning in thin air. Since she was a baby, Aza has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live. So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn't think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name.

Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who's always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found, by another. Magonia.

Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—but as she navigates her new life, she discovers that war between Magonia and Earth is coming. In Aza's hands lies fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?

From Publishers Weekly

Feb 02, 2015 – Terminally ill from infancy, Aza is willing to accept that she's dead. There's a container of ashes to prove it. It's on Earth, along with Jason the boy who she's long loved and who loves her in return and every other familiar touchstone of her brief, angry existence. Yet Aza is very much alive on the massive Magonian airship Amina Pennarum, with a piratical captain, who declares herself Aza's true mother, and a crew of jays, robins, owls and one screaming ghost. Headley, who co-edited Unnatural Creatures with Neil Gaiman, riffs like an improv comic through the factoids of a Google age, giving her characters retentive memories and lightning search skills. Like the best improv, the first-person narration is funny, furious, and vulnerable. The haunting conclusion leaves many issues unresolved, but the ferocious, intelligent power of Aza and Jason's bond is completely affirmed. Sweeping, strange, and built around a richly imagined world of chimerical bird-men and airships, the novel is ideal for fans of Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke & Bone and its sequels. Ages 13 up.

Customer Reviews

Am I the only one?

Didn't like it. Couldn't even finish it. It's a shame I was so in love with the first bit where she was on earth. I even cried a bit when she "died". But the execution of what promised to be a great story was just not there

Love it

I usually don't write reviews, but here I am. This book gives me life. My first sci-fi book and it's amazing. I never cared for sci-fi until now!

Concept is great, execution lacking

I really enjoyed the first third of this book, in particular the blossoming relationship between Aza and Jason. I appreciated Aza's cynicism in the face of her illness, and found both characters to be interesting yet familiar, if not entirely relatable and realistic. However, I found the transition to Magonia and resulting chapters to be lacking the earlier sections' wit and vivacity. I wanted the author to slow the pace of goings on in Magonia, to build the magical world slowly and with a singular direction, like Harry Potter. Instead, these sections seemed rushed -- I hadn't yet decided which characters I liked before they were thrown in near-death situation #4. Overall, I was a little disappointed; I think this novel could have been better if the writer had taken her time growing the story. There are still brilliant moments and the ambulance scene (and what precedes it) are well done.

Other Books in This Series

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  • $3.99
  • Level: Eighth Grade
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Fantasy
  • Published: Apr 28, 2015
  • Publisher: HarperCollins
  • Print Length: 336 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Series: 1, Magonia
  • Requirements: This book can only be viewed on an iOS device with Apple Books on iOS 12 or later, iBooks 1.5 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings