Flyaway is the story of a young teen who loves her father, swans, and feathers. While out birding, her father falls gravely ill and she acts powerfully to save him and get him help. While in the hospital, she meets another ill boy who ends up playing quite a powerful role in the book, offering both solace to her as she maneuvers the challenges of witnessing the treacherous times of a severely ill parent as well as inviting her to grow beyond what seems like a stopping point in her own love of birds. As a children's chapter book, this read ends fairly well, common with this genre, but the entire story feels very realistic to me throughout.
I can see a number of audiences for this one: young teens and pre-teens in particular. I know that I enjoyed it, but I am a total sucker for life-connecting texts written in realistic ways, with realistic and at least at times compassionate characters, and with a possibly true ending. This one rocked the boat for me, meaning I put down other books to read this one by itself. Yep, it was a keeper.