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The Sky is Mine by Amy Beashel

The Sky is Mine

See The Sky is Mine on Overdrive

"Izzy feels invisible. Trapped under the weight of expectation and censored by shame.

Her mum Steph and best friend Grace have always been there to save her. But with one under the control of her stepfather and the other caught in the throes of new love, Izzy is falling between the cracks.

As threats to her safety grow, Izzy wants to scream. But first she must find her voice.

And if the sky is the limit, then the sky is hers."

This book contains material which some readers may find distressing, including discussions of rape, coercive behaviour, domestic violence and abuse.

In a house adept at sweeping problems under the carpet, Izzy's life is falling apart. Her best friend Grace has abandoned her. Jacob has photos of her, photos he should never have got hold of and he's threatening to leak them. Then there's her stepdad. Her controlling, acidic stepdad, who makes her mum shrink and her stomach churn whenever he enters the room. It's hard to know your worth when people shout you down. But Izzy isn't going to be silenced anymore. She has a voice, and once she finds it, there's no stopping her. And if the sky is the limit, then the sky is hers.

I loved this visceral, gut-wrenching book and will be recommending it to everyone I know. At its core, the story is about finding and reclaiming your own voice and that's something that everyone should listen to.

This is a hard but powerful read, examining rape culture and domestic abuse. The issues discussed are handled with the utmost care. The dialogue it opens about coercion, consent and control is sorely needed and honestly, I think every young person should read it. One character dismisses a lot of abuse as just being 'banter' and sadly, I've seen this attitude reflected so many times with people that I know.

Beashel is a shining new voice in YA with brilliant dialogue and character craft. I empathised so much with Izzy and her lack of confidence, which is exploited and used to trample on her worth and self-esteem. The long-term effects of containing abuse are examined so well here with both Izzy and her mum. Watching both of them realise their own inner strength was so empowering, considering the heart-breaking darker moments earlier in the book. The writing style was so accessible and different for me, making me fly through the pages.

Honestly, all I can do is implore you to read this fantastic, insightful book and I know I'll be shouting about it for a while to come.