Flight Season by Marie Marquardt
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: February 20, 2018
Summary:Back when they were still strangers, TJ Carvalho witnessed the only moment in Vivi Flannigan’s life when she lost control entirely. Now, TJ can’t seem to erase that moment from his mind, no matter how hard he tries. Vivi doesn’t remember any of it, but she’s determined to leave it far behind. And she will.
But when Vivi returns home from her first year away at college, her big plans and TJ’s ambition to become a nurse land them both on the heart ward of a university hospital, facing them with a long and painful summer together – three months of glorified babysitting for Ángel, the problem patient on the hall. Sure, Ángel may be suffering from a life-threatening heart infection, but that doesn’t make him any less of a pain.
As it turns out, though, Ángel Solís has a thing or two to teach them about all those big plans, and the incredible moments when love gets in their way.
My Thoughts: Flight Season is a gem of a novel! Heartfelt, impactful, and beautifully written through 3 brilliantly woven POV’s , Marquardt’s novel discusses love, grief, loss, family, forgiveness, and acceptance!
From the very first page I fell in love with Flight Season and it easily became not only another one of my all-time favorite YA Contemporaries, but just connected with me in such a way I am truly grateful for!
You know when you read a book & feel you read it at the most perfect moment? That’s definitely what reading Flight Season felt like♥♥♥~
Told through 3 phenomenally developed POV’s, we follow Vivi Flannigan, TJ Carvalho & Ángel Solis.
Vivi has just barley passed her classes at Yale for pre-med, now in order to stay in the program she’s required to complete a summer internship at a hospital in the heart ICU. There she meets nurse aid TJ & patient Ángel.
TJ is planning to complete his training at the hospital & classes in community college to become a nurse.
Ángel Solis is an 18-year old patient, who finds himself in the hospital with a heart infection due to an incident from his job.
The 3 POV’s were all written so wonderfully and each had their own unique and distinct voice. I truly loved reading how these POV’s all weaved together.
One aspect I loved about Flight Season so much was the growth/development seen within each character. Though Vivi’s journey is essentially a huge aspect of this novel, both TJ + Ángel’s perspectives are equally as important and their stories are progressed so wonderfully!
These characters are very much different from their first introductions to the very last page and Marquardt brilliantly gives insight and depth to our 3 main characters that they just truly come to life!
Reading the friendship and deep connection the characters create with each other over the course of the story was miraculously developed and seeing how supportive they became of each other was written so beautifully!
Vivi herself was so relatable to me because she went through moments (especially thinking about university/majors) about whether what she’s studying is really what she wants to pursue. Also considering she heavily handles the emotions of grief and loss was just something for me personally I struggled with not too long ago and reading her long, but fulfilling journey to accept what happened w/ her father was just so beautiful to read & I felt for her with each and every moment.
Additionally what truly made this novel so much more special for me was the Latinx representation! We have TJ who is Brazilian-American & Ángel who is Indigenous Guatemalan & speaks Mam (an indigenous Mayan language).
This is actually the very first time I can say that I am truly writing a 100% #OwnVoices review (with my culture being represented) and that honestly meant so much to me reading it in Flight Season!
With my ethnic background being Guatemalan, it just felt so surreal to read that explicitly stated in the text, reading through Ángel’s falshbacks about Guatemala (& later Vivi’s POV), from the description of the setting to the indigenous languages, just had me crying tears of joy!!😭♥✨
I truly loved each of the 3 main characters with all my heart. Their personalities just shine through with each page and you really see their slow, but definite development when you reach the end of Flight Season.
Vivi is really into birds and bird-watching. Throughout the novel we see entries in her journal from the various birds she sees and what exactly they represent for her.
Flight Season discusses grief throughout a majority of the novel through Vivi, and we see how these birds later represent a sense of acceptance for her with the loss of her father + how that not only impacts her from before the start of the novel, but also her mother + the struggles (mainly economic) they face as the novel progresses.
TJ + Vivi both struggle with finding where their place in the world, but support each other when issues come up and through their *almost hate-to-love relationship, really shows their growth as characters and how they learn to really lift each other up + better understand who they want to be!
Though I loved all 3 main characters equally, Ángel was easily my favorite. His perspective in a way broke the 4th wall as he was essentially talking with us (the reader) as he narrates his time in his hospital room, how he got there & with the friendship he builds with Vivi + TJ.
The dynamic he has with each of them was so beautifully done and overall just his witty + kind personality made his character very refreshing to read about! He was just a really nice and supportive person throughout the novel and regardless of what obstacles he faced, just remained optimistic + hopeful!~
The themes throughout Flight Season were very well developed and explored, from loss (through the explanation of the death of Vivi’s father + Ángel’s family), but also acceptance and the importance of friendship & how it can allow for healing through difficult times.
Flight Season is one of those truly special books that takes you on an quite a journey and doesn’t let go for a single page! From the beautiful characters, writing, themes, and uniquely plotted story, Marquardt’s novel is a must read YA Contemporary!