The Heartbeats of Wing Jones
by Katherine Webber
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: March 14, 2017
Fifteen-year-old Wing Jones is shocked and devastated when she learns her older brother, Marcus, was the drunk driver in a crash that killed two people. He’s fighting for his life in the hospital with a coma, leaving Wing to deal with the wreckage he’s caused. Her family is grieving, their house is under risk of foreclosure, and her bullies, armed with the news of Marcus’s accident, have become intolerable. Wing begins to cope with her stress, anger, and sadness by running. When her crush spots her on the track one night, he’s astounded by her incredible pace. She is one of the fastest young female runners in Atlanta, but when the opportunity arises to sprint professionally, she’s plagued by self-doubt. Does she have what it takes?
This gripping novel explores the issues of coming-of-age and self-discovery. The author succeeds at creating incredibly realistic and touching characters. The romance is masterfully weaved in; it’s not the point of the book and it’s not overdone, but the scenes that include it are written perfectly. Katherine Webber’s crisp, conversational style is engaging.