Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano, 5 Stars

There are a handful of books that stand out for me. Books that I will remember for the rest of the my life. Books that I wish I could go back and read again for the first time. They are hard to find. But once you find them, you treasure the words in your heart forever.

Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano, is one of those books.

I’ve been in a reading rut lately. Still reading, but probably at half the pace. Life is busy, and though I long to log those hours on the couch with a cup of tea or coffee by my side, those moments have been few and far between.

I started reading Dear Edward on Thursday. I finished it on Sunday. Normally, this is the type of book I would devour in one very long sitting. I didn’t have that freedom this week. So I’ll take the 4 days as a win!

From the Publisher:

One summer morning, twelve-year-old Edward Adler, his beloved older brother, his parents, and 183 other passengers board a flight in Newark headed for Los Angeles. Among them are a Wall Street wunderkind, a young woman coming to terms with an unexpected pregnancy, an injured vet returning from Afghanistan, a business tycoon, and a free-spirited woman running away from her controlling husband. Halfway across the country, the plane crashes. Edward is the sole survivor.

Edward’s story captures the attention of the nation, but he struggles to find a place for himself in a world without his family. He continues to feel that a piece of him has been left in the sky, forever tied to the plane and all of his fellow passengers. But then he makes an unexpected discovery—one that will lead him to the answers of some of life’s most profound questions: When you’ve lost everything, how do find yourself? How do you discover your purpose? 

Dear Edward is at once a transcendent coming-of-age story, a multidimensional portrait of an unforgettable cast of characters, and a breathtaking illustration of all the ways a broken heart learns to love again.

My Review

I’ve always been fascinated by stories of plane crashes. Perhaps it’s because there are really few moments in life, when you are less in control of your own destiny than those minutes when you first take off or land when you are flying.

I’m sure I sound dramatic. And I know what they say – it’s far more likely to be injured or killed in a car accident than a plane crash. But we somehow feel more in control in a car that we are driving. And when we are in a plane, thousands of feet off the ground, we just have to trust and pray we will land safely.

In Dear Edward, Edward is a 12-year-old boy who against all odds, survives a plane crash. He’s the only survivor, among 191 deceased passengers, including his own family. For Edward, the worst came true. Except somehow, he was spared. And asking himself why will haunt him for the rest of his life.

Napolitano paints a vivid, emotional picture of a young boy not only struggling through adolescence and puberty, but struggling with who he is without his family. And through portraits of the other passengers, we get a glimpse of how fragile our own humanity really is.

This one has all the feels. I really don’t know if a book has touched my heart so deeply since My Sister’s Keeper. I would recommend this to those who loved that book, fans of John Green and Little Fires Everywhere. This one is a true gift!

Special thanks to Netgalley and Random House Dial Press for an advanced e-galley in exchange for my honest review. This one is out January 6, 2020. Preorder your copy:


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