The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender
by Leslye Walton
This. Book. Ya’ll. As the title suggests, Ava Lavender’s story is not the happiest of reads in the world and is, indeed, incredibly strange but I thoroughly enjoyed it (I read it in one day). Walton weaves magical realism, love, heartbreak, and the strength of family into a story that explores the descendents of a French-immigrant family down to their great-granddaughter, Ava, born swaddled in her very own wings. As Ava is discovering her own path in the world the reader navigates the lives of her mother, grandmother, and brother as their narratives collide in unexpected ways. I would suggest this for anyone who enjoys a read exploring familial ties and discovering one’s inner strength in a world that hates, loves, fears, and worships you.
- Austin, bookseller + resident YA expert