You know those kinds of novels where you just keep reading these almost "normal" narrations, but then you find yourself get gutted (and heart-wrenchingly wounded) time and time again? C. J. Flood's Infinite Sky is exactly like that.
Right in the beginning of her pubescent years, Iris is learning how to cope with an angry brother, a distant father, and the non-presence of a mother who would rather see the world. Her horizons are further broadened when she meets Trick, the son of the Gypsy household that settles illegally on their land. Iris' father won't allow their presence on his land, so how he reacts when he finds out Iris and Trick's secret and forbidden friendship is not surprising. Out in the fields, under the stars, not everyone can see just how limiting life can usually be... Except for Iris and Trick.
Infinite Sky does make use of British slang, so for people who aren't really used to them might find some details incomprehensible. I must admit that I was a bit off-put sometimes because I just couldn't get the hang of it, but nevertheless, the almost unintentional prose really pushed me to keep reading. Infinite Sky actually has a simple storyline, and probably because of its non-embellishments, it kind of works. In a way, it captured Iris' curiosity for the world as well as the beginning changes in her "journey to womanhood" (I hate this phrase I coined, but if the shoe fits, yeah?) and the tremulous relationships within their family and with the much-shunned Gypsy family. The first bloom of romance is very tender and sweet, and it was like that with Iris and Trick.
To sum it up, this is the kind of book that you reach for when you feel bogged down by weighty matters. At the end of the book, readers will end up surmising about life, and the more serious problems we ignore on a day-to-day basis.
Fans of Jandy Nelson's The Sky is Everywhere will undoubtedly find a familiar, yet younger soul in Infinite Flood's Iris.