A Year in the Sky by Lena Mikado
Elena’s life is a dream come true. She just married the man of her dreams, Chris, after a summer of whirlwind romance, her new husband suddenly came into quite a bit of money, and they have nothing but bright and shiny skies on their horizon. Except… there’s this girl. She’s not Chris’s ex. She is his best friend—which is way worse than an ex. And there is Alex, Elena’s scorned ex- fiancé who has all the rights to hate her guts. Throw the Atlantic Ocean separating the newlyweds, woes of immigration procedures, as well as omnipresent fears and insecurities, into the mix—and you got a perfect setup for a truly challenging—and truly amazing—first year of marriage. The only question is—will Elena and Chris’s love survive it?
This auto-biographical novel is about coping with one’s most deep-seated fears. It’s about living with your guilt for following your dream. It’s about one unforgettable Year in the Sky.
This book is a sequel to the first novel in the series, My Journey to the Ocean.
Targeted Age Group:: Not for children, YA and adults
Heat/Violence Level: Heat Level 5 – NC-17
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
My novels tell a real story. It’s my story… my own unique story. It is funny how it often seems to us that our story does not matter. In the modern world of selfies and the fervent societal cry for attention, it is so easy to feel like you don’t matter. But we do. Every single one of us matters. I learned that a life that seems uninteresting and not very exciting on the surface, comes out magical and full of meaning when typed out, then put on paper, glistening with all the colors of the rainbow.
The second novel, A Year in the Sky, picks up where the first novel, My Journey to the Ocean, left off. After marrying Chris at the end of the summer of our whirlwind romance, I had to go back to Russia for a year while we were waiting for my immigration paperwork to come through. Uncertainty of the immigration procedures, Chris’s ex in America, my ex in Russia, and me being mugged (with my wedding ring being stolen) first thing upon my arrival back home—and it seemed that Chris and I were kicked out of our romcom straight into a dark criminal drama. Fortunately, Chris had miraculously come into quite a bit of money right after we got married, and we were able to fly and see each other all over Europe for week-long rendezvous in a number of countries. The novel takes readers to Moscow (Russia), Ayia Napa (Cyprus), Prague (Czech Republic), Barcelona (Spain), Carcassonne (France), and London and Bath (England).
A Year in the Sky deals with conquering one’s fears and insecurities and coming out on the other side. It is akin to flying through a dark and turbulent night, wondering if you are going to survive it and then finally arriving at your destination, aglow with the morning sunrise and completely free of fears. I dedicated this novel to our second son, Maximilian Sky, hence the name.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
All the character are real :).
So this is what happens. This is what happens when one travels half-way around the world to America and follows one’s heart during a whirlwind summer work and travel holiday. This is what happens after journeying to the Ocean, dumping my fiancé of three years and marrying the man of my dreams and then returning to my home in Russia for a year while anxiously waiting for our marriage visa to be approved. Yes, my time in the US had been magical, and I had experienced wonderful things with some of the best friends and people I could ever hope to meet in my life. In the future I would even write a book about it, but for now it was time to pay the price. It was time to own up to the consequences of my actions. Or so I thought…
Back on Earth
They are not following you. You’re being totally paranoid, Elena. They are just two guys walking back home.
I stepped inside a small elevator with a faint yet nasty cigarette odor and cheerfully announced, “Eighth floor, please”.
As I noticed one of the guys pressing the button with number eight, I frowned inside. There are only ten floors in the building. It very rarely happens that people live above you—
My thoughts were quite rudely interrupted by a sudden punch right between my eyes. I quietly slid down onto the floor as I heard, “Shut up, or we’ll fucking kill you!”
Oh, that’s nice, I thought to myself as I sat on the dirty elevator floor hoping to live through the next few minutes. Just what I needed.
When they say the phrase, ‘I saw my whole life flash in front of me’, they don’t exaggerate. Whoever they are. My whole life did flash in front of me – rather quickly, since it had been quite short up to that time – and all I remember thinking was, NOOOO, I just got free, I just got married, Chris is coming here in two months!
But by that time, they were already gone. With my new digital Canon camera, my tiny Walmart wedding ring and my pack of Kent cigarettes with only two cigarettes in it. I picked up my black faux-leather purse and stumbled out of the elevator. With my hands trembling, I opened the door of my mom and dad’s apartment and silently stared at my reflection in the mirror. Well, at least I won’t need any makeup for Halloween.
Still not sure as to what dimension I was in – and why I happened to be there – I quickly shut the door behind me, grabbed the phone and dialed Chris’s number.
“Is that you, beautiful?” His cheerful voice made me wince. I was about to ruin his day, and I so didn’t want to do it.
“I got mugged,” I croaked and burst into tears, “I got mugged, and they stole my wedding ring, my camera, every-thing you gave me!”
“Hold on, Elena. Elena. Stop. Where are you?”
“I’m at home,” I sniffled and wiped the snotty tears off my face.
“Are you okay?”
“No, I’m not okay, I was mugged,” I retorted.
“I mean, they didn’t… touch you?”
“No, they didn’t rape me, Chris.”
“Elena got mugged!”
“What? Who are you talking to?”
“I was just telling Farrah about it. She overheard the snip-pets of our conversation and was wondering what happened.”
“Farrah is there?” I squeaked. Great, Olympic gods, not only do you get me mugged, you also stick Farrah right next to Chris at that very moment in time!
All I could hope was that the sound of my grinding teeth was muffled by the transatlantic call.
“Yeah, she came by for a beer.”
“Elena, are you okay?”
“No,” I hissed, “I’m not okay. I just got mugged, remember? Say hi to Farrah. I have to go do… whatever people who just got mugged do. Wipe the blood off my face, I guess? En-joy your beer!”
Great. I got punched in the face and hung up on my husband – all in under ten minutes. I must be getting punished for what I’ve done to Alex. I knew it was going to happen.
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