Thank you to Dark Room Tours and Simon and Schuster for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review.
When I read the synopsis I was instantly intrigued and when I was accepted as part of the bookstagram tour I was so excited! And I really enjoyed it, it’s such a heartfelt read.
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Before, I was a million things. Now I’m only one. The Burned Girl.
Ava Lee has lost everything there is to lose: Her parents. Her best friend. Her home. Even her face. She doesn’t need a mirror to know what she looks like–she can see her reflection in the eyes of everyone around her.
A year after the fire that destroyed her world, her aunt and uncle have decided she should go back to high school. Be “normal” again. Whatever that is. Ava knows better. There is no normal for someone like her. And forget making friends–no one wants to be seen with the Burned Girl, now or ever.
But when Ava meets a fellow survivor named Piper, she begins to feel like maybe she doesn’t have to face the nightmare alone. Sarcastic and blunt, Piper isn’t afraid to push Ava out of her comfort zone. Piper introduces Ava to Asad, a boy who loves theatre just as much as she does, and slowly, Ava tries to create a life again. Yet Piper is fighting her own battle, and soon Ava must decide if she’s going to fade back into her scars . . . or let the people by her side help her fly.
When I first heard about this book it sounded like Wonder but for YA and honestly if you loved Wonder then you will love this book too. It’s a story of loss and grief, of losing yourself and finding yourself again, of overcoming your fears and accepting yourself for who you are.
Everyone has scars. Some are just easier to see
Reading this it’s easy to connect to Ava and understand how she feels, even if we haven’t experienced the loss and life changing event she has. She is struggling to cope with her life now, she has no-one in her life that she can truly open up to and is so lonely. She misses her parents and cousin and she has cut contact with her friends and old life because she doesn’t want them to see what she looks like now.
She goes through such a wonderful story arc of learning to accept herself for who she is now and grieve for those she lost. It felt so real to read her story as it isn’t just a she goes to school and suddenly everything is fine. She struggles, she grows, takes steps forward but also goes backwards at times. It’s an everyday battle that she goes through.
When a wound’s that deep, it’s the healing that hurts.
She thinks that no-one will want to be friends with her because of how she looks but when Asad tries to talk to her, she ignores him, making assumptions yet he truly is trying to be nice and wants to get to know her. Each character has a specific label at the beginning of the book and it was wonderful to see how each of them are so much more than their labels and they all learn and grown throughout the story.
Ava’s friendship with Piper and Asad was so lovely to read, how they both help her in school and help her to accept herself and continue to do what she loves, especially theatre. Her friendship with Piper was especially important in helping her grow. Yet their relationship is also complex as they are both struggling but also showed how important friendships can be when someone is going through a difficult time.
Her aunt and uncle were also such wonderful characters to read about. They have also had to deal with the loss of their daughter and are looking after Ava. They need her as much as she needs them yet it takes Ava a long time to understand how much she needs them in her life. But they stick by her through everything and love and support her in everything.
Scars Like Wings is a powerful story about self-acceptance and learning to grieve and move on in life and filled with important lessons and I highly recommend you all read it.
She conquered her demons and wore her scars like wings