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Reviewed by Susan Sewell for Readers' Favorite
A young bat must face her fears and find her voice in the charming children's book Addie Earns Her Wings by Gary Goskowski. When a forest fire leaves young bat pup Addie and her parents homeless, her parents make the heartrending decision to leave her safely with a small cave bat community before searching for a new place to live above the smoke. Addie, barely old enough to hang by herself and too young to fly, must learn how to manage with the help her new community of smaller bats can give her. With the advice and lessons of an old owl and her world changing nightly, Addie discovers that through the pain and fear of loss come growth and purpose. When a crisis hits her new community, can Addie step into who she is and do what she knows she must do? Will the leader of the community listen to a pup?
Addie Earns Her Wings by Gary Goskowski is an exciting adventure into the world of night creatures. I enjoyed the villain, Jarli, with his unique way of speaking in rhymes and riddles and his reluctance to embrace Addie's wiser-than-her-age outlook. The portrayal of a pompous old owl is humorous, and he is easily my favorite character. While the story deals with the loss of home and family, it empowers the reader to speak up, no matter how young or small, to create change. With engaging characters, a fascinating plot, and a fast-paced storyline, this book will delight young readers that enjoy adventure stories about animals and wildlife.