Wing Jones has a special place in my heart and has inspired me to put on my running shoes and begin my starlit running sessions all over again.
Wing Jones by Katherine Webber
Published: 5th January 2017 by Walker Books
Wing Jones - one of the most highly anticipated debuts of 2017 and a book that has been raved about on twitter with glowing reviews. It is a debut that I have been waiting for and I devoured every single page whilst cheering on Wing all the way to the finish line.
That year she found the power to be extraordinary
With a grandmother from China and another from Ghana, fifteen-year-old Wing Jones is often caught between worlds. When tragedy strikes, she discovers an extraordinary talent she never knew she had. Wing's running could bring her family everything it needs. It could also keep Wing from the one thing she truly wants.
Wise. Hopeful. Empowering.
Wing Jones - a story about so much more than running. It's about grief, bullying, family, hope, freedom and self-discovery.
Living with a grandmother from Ghana, a grandmother from China, a brother who's always in the spotlight and a mother who is doing her best to provide for her family, Wing Jones has learnt to watch from the sidelines. Without many friends of her own, Wing has attempted to blend in but with no success. It's difficult to blend in when your brother looks so exotic, is a star on the football field, has a gorgeous girlfriend and a handsome best friend whilst you look nothing like your family and stand out for different reasons.
Wing is a character I feel that I can relate to - someone with barely any friends, someone with a sister who is the apple of my mother's eye, someone who is the wrong height (5"), someone who is the wrong weight and someone who is prepared to just keep living in the shadows. 'So I do what I do best. I keep quiet.' I attempt to hide a lot of myself for fear that I'll say or do the wrong thing and it's refreshing to have a character like Wing to relate to in this way.
'I can't decide if the teachers at my school are as dense as concrete or if they purposely ignore what they see.' - I feel that Katherine has hit the nail on the head with this quote when it comes to tackling bullying. I'm not saying that there aren't any teachers, or people out there who don't stand up to bullying when it occurs because there are. However, at the same time it can be difficult to stand up to bullying and tackle it in a way which won't have further consequences. I feel that it's important that there is always some form of support network available for those who are bullied and that they realise it's not an actual reflection or representation of them as a person. We all have flaws and imperfections but there is no one like you and there is nothing wrong with being yourself. Just be you.
The relationship between Granny Dee and LaoLao made me fall in love with them both and I'd love to have grandmothers like them. Bickering over nothing and everything, it's clear that Granny Dee and LaoLao both have the same competition drive yet share a huge affection for those in their lives, particularly each other. I would have loved to have more of an insight on Granny Dee and LaoLao's bittersweet feud as there was most certainly no love lost between the two. Plus how could you possibly stay mad at either of them when they cook the most delicious meals ever?
Do we really know those closest to us? - This seemed to be a question that awakened a light within Wing when it came to looking at not only those who surround her, but deep within herself. I feel like this question sparked a flame deep within Wing and, with the help of a dragon and lion, discovered that running is something which gives her freedom and strength. With a new found passion and talent, people really start to look at Wing properly and begin noticing her for who she really is. I also feel like this is a question which made people question who Marcus really is and whether he is the perfect, golden boy that he's made out to be.
With a new found talent, a mountain of debt, and heart-breaking consequences; can Wing, Aaron, Monica and Wing's family find a solution in time?
Light can be found in the darkest of times, if one believes they can do anything.
Katherine Webber's debut is heartfelt, powerful and inspirational. Definitely a book to add to your TBR if you haven't already - just make sure you have some tissues on standby because I guarantee you'll need them.