Review: How It Feels to Fly by Kathryn Holmes


The movement is all that matters.

For as long as Samantha can remember, she’s wanted to be a professional ballerina. She’s lived for perfect pirouettes, sky-high extensions, and soaring leaps across the stage. Then her body betrayed her.

The change was gradual. Stealthy.

Failed diets. Disapproving looks. Whispers behind her back. The result: crippling anxiety about her appearance, which threatens to crush her dancing dreams entirely. On her dance teacher’s recommendation, Sam is sent to a summer treatment camp for teen artists and athletes who are struggling with mental and emotional obstacles. If she can make progress, she’ll be allowed to attend a crucial ballet intensive. But when asked to open up about her deepest insecurities, secret behaviors, and paralyzing fears to complete strangers, Sam can’t cope.

What I really need is a whole new body.

Sam forms an unlikely bond with Andrew, a former college football player who’s one of her camp counselors. As they grow closer, Andrew helps Sam see herself as he does—beautiful. But just as she starts to believe that there’s more between them than friendship, disappointing news from home sends her into a tailspin. With her future uncertain and her body against her, will Sam give in to the anxiety that imprisons her?


*Book Received in Exchange for Honest Opinion/Review*

I think I am having a come to Jesus moment with this book, one word to describe it…moving. I am a person who has and still does struggle with significant body image issues. Recovering from an ED (Eating Disorder) but still struggling from time to time with how I look in the mirror, this book resonated with me on such and emotional level till I felt Sam in every nerve ending.

I feel hollow and raw writing a review for such a poignant story that ended on a positive note but again a little too quickly for my liking. Each of these characters is struggling with self-acceptance and acknowledging that failure is an option. This is something that everyone can relate to, we all have heard the whisper of self-doubt in our minds, sometimes loud and sometimes quiet. Holmes elegantly taps into numerous hard topics with grace and skill. I feel like she burrowed in my brain and dissected my insecurities and then put them into a book.

This is a moving tale, about personal growth, overcoming your demons, and striving to be something more than the thing that defines us. For me it was running, for Sam it was dance. I just cannot put into words how healing and therapeutic this book is. Just never forget that sometimes it takes failing to find growth. An absolute, hands down must read!

PRE-ORDER THE BOOK (Available June 14, 2016):

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