Updraft by Fran Wilde

Published: 2015

Genre: YA fantasy

Length: 364 pages

Setting: a fantasy world

Interest: I had seen it as a Big Idea on John Scalzi’s blog and thought the premise of the story was interesting. When I saw it at the library, in search of some YA, I picked it up.

Summary: Kirit is almost ready for her Wing Test and is excited to become an apprentice Trader. However, she comes to the attention of the Singers, who want her to join their ranks. Kirit refuses at first, but after a series of harsh penalties, she ultimately gives in and begins training as a Singer. She questions many of the Singer Traditions and Laws, but excels in the training. It helps that she is a skyshouter (a rare talent) who can control skymouths with her voice. Turns out the Singers have been breeding skymouths to control the Towers. Kirit gets involved in stopping that activity and overturns the Singer hierarchy.

Final thoughts: An interesting world that has a strong influence on the people and culture of that world. It took me a bit to get drawn into the story, but it definitely held me to the end. Kirit was a reluctant heroine. Her dreams did not match up to the Singer’s expectations for her. However, she was able to keep her actions true to herself, which resulted in a big societal change.

I want to know more about the world Kirit lives in, particularly the Towers. If the Towers are made out of bone that grows, it must be growing FROM something. What is it? What else is below the clouds? Why did the society move up above the clouds? I can see how the society developed the way it did, but I want to know where it came from. Hopefully, some of those questions are answered in future books.

Title comes from: The most reliable way to get from Tower to Tower (and the only way if the Singers wouldn’t let you have a bridge) was to fly. Updrafts are important to keep you aloft.

Reading challenges fulfilled: 68/100 in my Finally to 100 Challenge

If you’re interested in purchasing the book, you can click on the cover image to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!


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