By Jasmin McGaughey
For many of us, the end of summer is also the end of our holiday break. No more lounging around all day, swimming, reading (for those lucky enough to do it).
But books can always act as a type of escapism, no matter the time of the year. Stories can take you to different towns around Australia and to countries across the world you’ve never been, and sometimes across galaxies in the future!
Here we’ve listed five #LoveOzYa titles that somehow include “travel” so you can, for a moment, imagine you’re in another place.
Wraith by Shane and Alex Smithers
Think vertical travel with Wraith! The story takes place on Australia and above it. When James experiments with a newly found ability to fly, he finds himself accidentally trapped in a city in the clouds. Here James learns of new peoples and their technologies and skills. He also learns that this city in the sky is in danger – having misplaced a vital piece of technology, the SAFFIRE. With his new friend, Aureole, James makes his way back to land to find the SAFFIRE and stop the cloud city from falling. James not only shows us a world in the sky, we also get to see Australia, including his home on Durag Country.
This One is Ours by Kate O’Donnell
This One is Ours follows sixteen-year-old Sofie as she travels to Paris for an exchange program. It is here that Sofie is not only introduced to a new place, but a new way of thinking. The world is in crisis and Sofie cannot ignore it. Despite feeling this hopelessness about the state of the world’s climate, Sofie wants to ask herself what she can do to help. In this story, Sofie travels across the globe to beautiful Paris where she finds power behind art. She finds her political voice and takes the steps to speak out against the climate crisis while trying to understand what it means to fight for a better future.
The Other Side of the Sky by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
Writing duo Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner tell the story of two separate lives in this speculative fiction adventure. In a distant future, Nimh is a living goddess on her planet and, unknown to her, North is a prince of a city in the sky above her. But both their homes are in danger. When North accidentally falls to the forgotten lands beneath his flying city, he meets Nimh and the two must work together to find a way to get North home and repair their homes. This travel showcases the differences of background, class and beliefs.
Freedom Swimmer by Wai Chim
This story is about Ming, a young boy from a village in China whose parents have died, and Li, a young boy who arrives from the city with others to learn the farm. Told from both their points of view, the boys befriend one another over five years. They then propose the impossible: swimming to freedom, from China to Hong Kong. Inspired by a true story, this novel celebrates friendship, determination and hope.
Becoming Kirrali Lewis by Jane Harrison
Travel doesn’t always mean leaving your continent (or planet). For Kirrali Lewis, it means journeying from her rural town in Victoria to start a degree in the big city of Melbourne. Here, in her law degree, Kirrali learns more about her heritage and cultural roots. She reconnects with her birth parents as she tries to navigate what her future will look like. This book is set in the 60s and the 80s (to take readers to a different time in history) and is told from multiple points of view. It’s vulnerable and relatable for anyone who has had to move to a place outside of their comfort zone.
What are some LoveOzYa books with travel and movement that you love?