A Sapphic Debut that Delivers on Feels of All Kinds
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned to the sky, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.” —Leonardo Da Vinci
Not only did I read Fly with Me while on my cursed, double-diverted flight from St. Louis to Oklahoma City…I devoured it. Andie Burke’s debut novel features a romance between nervous flyer (Olive needs the relief from a prescription kind of fear), and mission-orientated Stella as they decide a fake dating relationship could be mutually beneficial upon landing after a newsworthy flight.
I was immediately charmed by Olive. She works in medical care as a nurse, is terrified of flying but is determined to conquer her fears in order to run her first ever marathon at Disneyworld in order to honor her brother. Unfortunately, after a series of events that even made me gasp, Olive’s medical training is prevailed upon midflight and luckily having someone else’s life in her hands was enough to get Olive’s fears under control. The pilot of Olive’s own cursed flight is none other than Stella, who generously thanks Olive for her coolness during a medical emergency even though they’ve had to divert to Atlanta which is nowhere near close enough for Olive to get to her race in Orlando.
“You’re like a magical unicorn, Olive.”
With Stella’s help, Olive luckily makes it to her race on time and after a magical day spent at Disneyworld agrees to enter into a fake relationship that would not only help Stella’s chances at a promotion within the airline, but also give Olive a little bit of support with her newfound social media and media outlet fame. The problem is that Olive is a bit of a romantic and wears her emotions on her sleeve, whereas Stella is definitely not the relationship type.
Truly, I adored reading this novel. Stella and Olive’s fake dating relationship gave me all the warm feelings. I adored Olive’s friends, and getting to see Stella open up to a real relationship was equally part of the charm of it all. Where I think Andie Burke truly shines is how evocative and real she made Olive’s struggles with grief and her estrangement from her family. While I loved all the light-hearted and romantic moments, I was won over with how the heavier themes were written. I also admired the way the concept of misogyny in the workplace was addressed, and overall, how feminism and inclusivity is at the forefront of Fly with Me.
“Oh, you think this is nerdy? You should see my label maker.”
As far as debuts go, I believe that Fly with Me is indicative of a stellar career for Andie Burke and I look forward to more stories from this talented author. Fly with Me releases everywhere September 5th and I highly recommend you pick up a copy of your own!
Jes is a self-proclaimed bookworm, who recently moved from the PNW back to the Midwest. When her nose isn’t in a book, she’s spending time with her husband, two kids, and her three fur babies, or exploring the globe. She also firmly believes that you should start the day with coffee, and end the day in bed with a good book.