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Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Bethel Public Library TEEN BLISS (Text to phone) 34030141684800 Teen Fiction Available -
Black Rock Branch - Bridgeport YA BLISS (Text to phone) 34000081354631 Young Adult Fiction Available -
Bolton High School FIC BLI (Text to phone) 34062141570705 Fiction Available -
Brookfield Library TEEN F/BLISS (Text to phone) 34029142872356 Teen Fiction Available -
Easton Public Library YA BLISS, BRYAN (Text to phone) 37777119027860 Display Item Available -
Gunn Memorial Library - Washington YA FIC BLI (Text to phone) 34055141145528 Young Adult Fiction Available -
Jonathan Trumbull Library - Lebanon YA FIC BLISS (Text to phone) 33430141173708 Young Adult Fiction Available -
Kent Library Association - Kent Y BLI (Text to phone) 33410133623860 Young Adult Fiction Available -
Kent Memorial Library - Suffield YA FICTION BLISS (Text to phone) 32518145400803 Young Adult Fiction Available -
Killingworth Library Association YA FIC BLI (Text to phone) 33420144972859 Young Adult Fiction Available -
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Content descriptions

Summary, etc.: "Toby and Luke are best friends, bound by a goal of leaving their hometown for Luke's wrestling scholarship, but a series of events during their senior year will test their resolve"--
Subject: Best friends Juvenile fiction
Friendship Juvenile fiction
High schools Juvenile fiction
Prisoners Juvenile fiction
Death row Juvenile fiction
Letters Juvenile fiction
Abusive parents Fiction
Best friends Fiction
Friendship Fiction
Family problems Fiction
High schools Fiction
Schools Fiction
Prisoners Fiction
Death row Fiction
Letters Fiction

Syndetic Solutions - BookList Review for ISBN Number 0062494279
We'll Fly Away
We'll Fly Away
by Bliss, Bryan
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BookList Review

We'll Fly Away

Booklist


From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.

*Starred Review* We know from the beginning of Bliss' latest novel that things won't end well for the characters: the opening pages are the first of many letters Luke writes from death row to his friend Toby. Between letters, Bliss recounts the teens' last year of high school Luke is trying to cut weight in advance of the state wrestling championships, Toby tries to keep his abusive father at a distance, and despite their long-standing friendship, Luke and Toby's usually reliable bond is starting to crack. For almost all their 18 years, they've relied on each other for safety. Both come from precarious homes, and their dead-end North Carolina town isn't doing them any favors. Luke bears the brunt of responsibility for his two young brothers and his neglectful mother, who struggles to keep food in the fridge, while Toby's hair-trigger father, a small-time criminal who uses smarmy charm to his advantage, lashes out in violence. Thankfully, Luke has channeled his simmering, powerful anger into expert discipline on the wrestling mat, so much so that he has a scholarship to college. If he can just figure out how to take Toby along to Iowa, they'll be home free. But Toby is growing weary of Luke micromanaging his choices, and he's starting to think Luke's plan is half-baked. When Toby starts falling for Lily, a woman Luke thinks is bad news, it might be the final straw for their friendship, especially since Lily inadvertently pulls Toby ever closer to his father's risky orbit. Bliss uses spare, tight language when writing Luke and Toby's story we get a sense of the hard corners of their lives and tiny glimpses of their past, but he noticeably doesn't spend much time dwelling on their emotions, and neither do the characters. Luke and Toby's conversations dance around the tough stuff, and more often than not, they ultimately land on glib sarcasm or classic high-school vulgarities, anything they can do to avoid the things they're afraid of. Luke's letters, on the other hand, are spilling over with feeling about Toby; his own guilt; the efforts of court-appointed lawyers, clergy, and other inmates who try (often fruitlessly) to get him to latch on to a modicum of hope; how the very structure of the correctional system serves to sap inmates of their humanity and that's a sharp contrast to his day-to-day life. I can't open up or tell anybody how I'm feeling or what scares me . . . The only way to live in here is to be completely walled off, to live solely on the inside. That way nobody can take anything from you ever again. It's not until he starts writing letters to Toby that he seems to grasp the enormity of his situation and finally reflects on the events of their senior year with an unclouded eye. Bliss is tackling a heavy topic here, but he keeps the story focused so tightly on the characters that the novel never gets purposeful or preachy. We recognize the injustice of Luke's circumstances, but we don't need statistics or ethical philosophy to get there. Rather, we recognize that injustice by way of compassion and empathy, by seeing Luke for what he is not a remorseless criminal, but a vividly rendered, multifaceted human besieged by bad choices and a deck stacked against him. With this novel, Bliss isn't asking whether Luke deserves his sentence or whether his actions were justified. Instead, he's quietly and insistently showing us a complex, deeply human and deeply flawed character, and in so doing, he asks whether we can honestly regard the life of a death-row inmate as worthless. The answer is a resolute no. Bliss excels at this kind of storytelling, the sort that zeros in on a character and offers a full, vibrant picture of his or her circumstances and choices. Those choices might not always make sense, or they might be driven by fear or jealousy, but he instills so much raw humanity in his characters that it's almost impossible not to empathize. It might seem like We'll Fly Away is a book with an anti-death penalty message, and while that's certainly true in part, its larger agenda maybe even the larger goal of Bliss' writing in general is to dare his readers not only to see the depths of human complexity, but to care.--Hunter, Sarah Copyright 2018 Booklist

Syndetic Solutions - Publishers Weekly Review for ISBN Number 0062494279
We'll Fly Away
We'll Fly Away
by Bliss, Bryan
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Publishers Weekly Review

We'll Fly Away

Publishers Weekly


(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Before Luke ended up on death row, he and his best friend Toby dreamed of escaping rural North Carolina in a beat-up crop duster that they discovered in a wooded area. Alternating between third-person chronicles of Luke and Toby's senior year of high school and Luke's letters to his friend from behind bars, Bliss weaves together a compelling and raw story. Luke was a wrestling champion with a mother who wasn't responsible enough to get to work or feed her family. Toby was a smart kid hiding the bruises from his abusive and drunk father. With hard-hitting authenticity, Bliss conveys both the typical dilemmas of adolescence as well as the more sobering and life-altering moments that Toby and Luke are unfairly forced to confront. At its core, Bliss's story is a meditation on choices-including the momentary lapses of judgment that can derail whole lives, raising the question of whether a single event can or should define an individual. A powerful story of loyalty, betrayal, and crippling family dysfunction. Ages 14-up. (May) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Syndetic Solutions - School Library Journal Review for ISBN Number 0062494279
We'll Fly Away
We'll Fly Away
by Bliss, Bryan
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School Library Journal Review

We'll Fly Away

School Library Journal


(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Gr 9 Up-This novel explores family abuse, sex, first love, and friendship. Luke and Toby have been best friends since they were kids. Now in their senior year, tensions are rising and their friendship is tested. Luke is a three-time state champion wrestler, known for his hot temper and sticking up for Toby in any situation. Toby defuses tension with his quick wit and humor, while at home his criminal father has begun to take an interest in utilizing his underage son. Both boys have family issues, with abusive fathers and absent mothers, so they rely solely on each other. Alternating between a third-person account of the boys' senior year and Luke's letters to Toby from death row, this fast-paced read will have teens tearing through chapters to find out why Luke is in jail. Once readers have put the pieces together, the conclusion will leave them devastated. This is touching book about male friendship for fans of Jason Reynolds and Matt de la Peña. VERDICT A realistic and emotional story that will be an excellent choice for high school libraries.-Morgan O'Reilly, Riverdale Country School, NY © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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