I've read & reviewed JD Estrada's books before- but here is something a touch different. I haven't read this book yet; it releases Dec. 1. 2018- so this book is on my to-be-read list.
With his adult fantasy/science fiction Human Cycle series, Estrada proved he is a writer with a vivid imagination capable of bringing heart and charm to all manner of monsters.
This book is aimed at middle readers. I am excited to see what he does with that imagination of his in this tale about a boy who dreams of flying.
The First Odventure Novel: Given to Fly by JD Estrada
Have you ever wanted to read a book that dreams about becoming a Studio Ghibli film? Well now you can. Given to Fly is the 13th book by Puerto Rican indie author JD Estrada and his first full length middle grade fantasy novel. But more importantly, it’s a book with a lot of heart and no violence.
If you see movies, TV, video games, or the news at any given moment, it’s almost as if violence is a required ingredient in whatever medium we enjoy. Given to Fly is a book that avoids the use of violence even when it talks about real issues like death, financial and professional struggles, and life in general in favor of finding joy and life lessons through the fantastical.
At 11 years old, John Rivers is a kind hearted kid who dreams about flying. He’s just moved to the Pacific Northwest with his family to a house that although it’s very lovely and very cozy, it’s not exactly magical. What he doesn’t know is that magic is actually closer than he thinks.
After strolling up a hill near his house, he finds a cliff with a cove at the bottom and a huge tree growing over the water. What’s special about this particular tree is that it currently serves as the resting spot for a house that defies logic while embracing the amazing. As curious as he is kind, one look at Od Manor is all it takes for John to jump at the chance to explore a new world of wonder.
Apart from John Rivers, the other main protagonist in the novel is Fäet Odstein, the literary persona of JD Estrada. Although mainly based on Estrada himself, Fäet probably also has a little bit of Willy Wonka, Cheshire Cat, and many other characters that resonate with JD. Given to Fly is also the first of what will be a series of stand-alone middle-grade novels with Fäet Odstein as one of its protagonists. The purpose of these books shall be to offer stories without violence that hopefully get more children to read and dream.
This is not the first time JD Estrada has written middle grade fantasy stories. His Daydreams on the Sherbet Shore have been described as whimsical bedtime stories with a lot of heart. That same heart was the main driver for this story. Like most of his works, Given to Fly was written longhand in one of the best gifts Estrada has ever received in his life. A long time ago, his wife gifted him a hard cover notebook. The image on it was particularly special to him. She had asked him what image meant the most to him. Without batting an eye, he looked up the image to the Pearl Jam single by the same name. A couple of months later and with misty eyes, he had a hard cover notebook with that same image and the name could only be Given to Fly. But what to write about…
The question lingered in the air and rumbled in his brain until a trip to Orlando had him and his wife going to Epcot Center and getting on the Soarin’ ride for the first time. As sights, sounds, and smells washed over him in the beautiful flight simulator, an idea was born and by the end, he had soared right into an epiphany. “It’s going to be about a boy who dreams about flying,” he told his wife through tears of joy after getting off the ride.
Several years have passed after that ride and finally Given to Fly is ready for you to read. It is a tribute to things that bring him joy and a song that makes his soul smile. In honor of the band that has inspired his life so much, all proceeds for Given to Fly and all other Estrada books for the remainder of 2018 shall be donated to Actionforjackson.org in support of #EBAwareness. Epidermolysis Bullosa is a family of rare genetic disorders that affect the body's largest organ: the skin and Eddie Vedder (lead singer for Pearl Jam) has worked hard to support this cause. It is a small token of gratitude for everything the band means to Estrada and aligns with his #Humans4Humans efforts to support different causes and try to make a positive impact through his writing and any other efforts to support good causes that help our fellow humans.
To purchase your very own copy of Given to Fly, visit Libros 787 or Amazon.com.
John Rivers is a kind and imaginative 11-year-old who is about to learn that magic not only exists, but is closer than he thinks. As much a dreamer as he is curious, John comes across a house that defies logic while embracing the amazing. Influenced by Hayao Miyazaki, Peter Pan, and dreams of flight, Given to Fly is a book full of heart that skips the violence in favor of the fantastical.
John Rivers is a kind and imaginative 11-year-old whose new home may be cozy, but there’s nothing magical about it. What he doesn’t know is that magic is actually closer than he thinks. After strolling up a hill near his house, he finds a cliff with a cove at the bottom with a huge tree growing over the water. What’s special about this particular tree is that it currently serves as the resting spot for a house that defies logic while embracing the amazing. As curious as he is kind, one look at Od Manor is all it takes for John to jump at the chance to explore a new world of wonder.
Given to Fly is the 13th book by Puerto Rican indie author JD Estrada. It is a work that shies away from violence in favor of exploring the inner child we all have that is always ready and willing to dream.