March 5, 2019
from HMH Books for Young Readers
and from Scholastic Canada
Please consider supporting your local independent bookseller or library. My local indie, Words Worth Books, can hook you up with signed copies. Ask them!
Stand on the Sky
“She had always heard that the eagle chooses the eagle hunter. She wanted that. She wanted her eagle to come to her. To choose her.”
It goes against all tradition for Aisulu to train an eagle, for among the Kazakh nomads, only men can fly them. But everything changes when Aisulu discovers that her brother, Serik, has been concealing a bad limp that risks not just his future as the family's leader, but his life too.
When her parents leave to seek a cure for Serik at a distant hospital, Aisulu finds herself living with her intimidating uncle and strange auntie -- and secretly caring for an orphaned baby eagle. To save her brother and keep her family from having to abandon their nomadic life, Aisulu must earn her eagle’s trust and fight for her right to soar. Along the way, she discovers that family are people who choose each other, home is a place you build, and hope is a thing with feathers.
A letter from the editor
When I first read the manuscript for Stand on the Sky, I got that punch-in-the-pit-of-your-stomach excited nervousness that comes so rarely as an editor—when you realize you’re reading something truly extraordinary, and you hope-against-hope that you’ll get to be the one to publish it. I was incredibly moved by Aisulu’s powerful story, and I was struck by how vividly the themes of perseverance, love, and family came to life.
A heartfelt adventure in the tradition of beloved animal friendship stories, Stand on the Sky is about a girl and her eagle forging a forbidden bond and overcoming odds and expectations. If this were all the novel accomplished it would still be a wonderful book. But this book, which Erin lovingly researched and carefully crafted, is also a deeply personal one for her—it’s a story about hard family circumstances, the difficult choices parents sometimes make to close ranks around a sick child, and the healthy child who gets left behind. Ultimately, it’s about family becoming the people who choose you, and it’s about hope being the thing with feathers.
I’m so proud to publish this wild and tender tale. I trust it will soar into your hearts as it did mine and stay with you long after you turn the last page.
HMH Books for Young Readers