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Fly a Little Higher

4.61  ·  Rating details ·  2,062 ratings  ·  315 reviews
Laura Sobiech tells the amazing story of how God used her son’s battle with cancer to touch the lives of millions.

“Okay, Lord, you can have him. But if he must die, I want it to be for something big. I want someone’s life to be changed forever.”

This is what Laura Sobiech prayed when she found out her seventeen-year-old son had only one year to live. With this desperate pra
Kindle Edition
Published May 6th 2014 by Nelson Books
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Average rating 4.61  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,062 ratings  ·  315 reviews

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Paul  Hankins
I got to see the SoulPancake video of the "My Last Days" series that featured Zach Sobiech in May of 2013. Our school year had already ended.

As it turned out, by the time I saw the now viral video featuring Zach Sobiech, his life had ended.

I remember posting the video to my Twitter stream and my Facebook wall with something like, "If we were in Room 407 today, we would be watching this." I'm known for the videos I select to watch with my students in the classroom and I knew that this kind of p
Nov 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebooks
How does one even really rate a book like this? All I could think about as I read it was that I wish I could have half the strength & attitude that Zach Sobiech had to put towards anything in life. It's always amazing to me how kids seem to handle things so much better than adults when it comes to cancer or other life altering diseases. The whole family's faith and unity was just heartwarming and this book is definitely a tear jerker but it's a good one to read for one & all. It shows that life ...more
Mary Kenyon
May 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I could not read this book without revisiting my own losses of a mother, husband, and grandson, in the space of three years. Nor could I read it without thinking about my daughter and son-in-law, who lost their son. I felt my heart expanding with love for this writer, this family, and the beautiful son who faced death with a bravery that belied his youth. I called my daughter immediately after I completed this book, my eyes red-rimmed from crying. We agreed this is one of the best books we've re ...more
Nov 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
I really liked this book. The author, the mother of Zach Sobiech was a wonderful story teller, though I hate to call her a storyteller. I appreciated the perspective of a mom, her anxiety, fear, hope, faith, love, desperation, endurance and more. When Zach was diagnosed with cancer, they made one decision after another with the information they were given and always with hope. With each treatment and new diagnosis, they had to re-evalutate what was most important to them and what Zach wanted to ...more
Austin Hood
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sadly, I never really knew Zach, though we came up through parallel grades in school. There was a profound gulf between my way of living and his throughout that time, his example is an enormous inspiration. I am glad to be able to know his story through the eyes of his mom, and this may have been the most important story I have read this year.
Liz Willard
Sep 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
Read this book even though you will cry.

I was crying by page 3, and cried intermittently throughout, even though I knew what was going to happen. The first half of the book was particularly devastating, as she walks through Zach's diagnosis and the first year when they still had hope. So while yes, this IS a book about losing a child, it's also a book about faith, family, friends, and not to sound like a cliche, but also the difference one person can make. I wish I'd known Zach.
Brenda Wharton
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star
Fantastic book! Usually books don’t make me cry, but this one did. This is the story of a young man who at 14 years old was diagnosed with bone cancer. It is his tough and courageous battle as he fights for three years, but in the end learns how to live each day even though he’s dying. It is the story of how God uses one teenage boy to bring glory to His kingdom. This book hit close to home as my cousin died 5/23/16 of the same cancer
Christy Ryan
Nov 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
This book was so sad. I'm honestly not even sure why I read it. However...for sure my take away, as a mama, was the reminder to enjoy every day with my children. I'm not promised tomorrow. So today, no matter what we are doing...just being their mama today...that is the gift.
Sep 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Another sad one, however this one is uplifting as well. Good message without feeling like religion is being pushed constantly. Would recommend.
Jun 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book by far has been one of my favorite summer reads. I laughed through this book, I cried on several occasions. In my opinion, it is WAY better than The Fault in our Stars. This book is the real deal. "You Don't have to find out you're Dying to Start Living" which is exactly the way Zach lived. Flying a Little Higher, by Laura Sobiech marks the story of her son Zach battling Osteosarcome, cancer. Initially, the outlook was good for Zach, but it came back attacking his pelvis, lungs and his ...more
Nov 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
A beautiful, heartbreaking picture of faith as a family walks their teenage son through cancer. His faith and maturity through the whole process is truly remarkable. I was touched and inspired....that being said, by the time I was done with the first third of the book, it hurt too much to go on.

I could feel the pain Laura went through and his age is so close to my own precious just hurt too much. I will buy a copy for our library, I think our kids will (hmm....enjoy doesn't seem t
Mar 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wow - was hard to reading this moving book through all the tears but after seeing Zac's music video Clouds and also the documentary when this book came up on NetGalley I had to request it.
This book is the heartfelt memoir of Zac's mother Laura from his diagnoses to the end of his battle. It is honest, heartfelt and doesn't try to gloss over anything or make it 'fluffy'. Even if you aren't religious in any way both her and Zac's faith that helped them through this shouldn't put you off reading.
Dec 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Best read of the year. Laura came to our church and spoke this summer and she was an amazing speaker. I was doubtful the book could live up to her performance as a speaker, as most biographies/memoirs/autobiographies tend to be pretty poorly written. However, I was pleasantly surprised when the book was as well written as a NYTimes Best Seller. That aside, the story is so powerful, so poignant, it is a book I have recommended all of my friends read. Zach demonstrates in his faith journey how we ...more
Apr 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I hardly know how to review this book. It held so much meaning for me. I was crying by page 9 and finished way past my bedtime to the sound of thunder outside. So many people feel a personal connection to this young man and the book only deepens one's affection and regard for his family. I was amazed at how honest and generous Laura was in sharing their trials and their joys. It is a book for the faithful and for those who have faith in goodness and love too.

I have a heavy, hopeful heart after
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I finished "Fly a Little Higher" by Laura Sobiech yesterday. And I loved every page. This is a beautifully poignant book by a mother who journeys with her son Zach, as he lives life to the fullest while enduring terminal cancer. It is a powerful message of redemptive suffering, surrender, trust and hope. She prayerfully gives her son back to God and asks Him to transform her sorrow into something good. The answer to her prayer is amazing, as Zach's life and his hope-filled message continue to in ...more
Aug 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was choking back tears more than once in this book, and it sucked me in right away. I can't imagine being that person/mom who has to see to completion something like "caring for a child with cancer" from her "I-Never-Want-To-Do" list, let alone write a book about the whole journey to witness to the world afterwards. Powerful. Moving. Inspiring. Brought new perspective on how a human being can suffer and still be blessed with so much love & grace right to the finish line and beyond. ...more
Diane Mercier
This is a story about Faith, Hope, and the ability to continue living a beautiful and fulfilling life even though you know it is coming to an end. Zach Sobiech knew he had very little time left but instead of giving up he was able to touch the lives of people around the world with his music, his smile and his determination to never to give up.
Jan 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
What is amazing about this book is that even though it tackles some seriously sad issues, I found myself filled with joy and smiling more often than I felt like crying. The detail and the realness of the book radiates from cover to cover. The author was not afraid to tell the truth, good and bad. I am amazed at the strength and faith of this family. Incredible.
Feb 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the most inspiring, but heart wrenching books I've probably ever read. I wish we all could live with even a portion of the joy and hope that Zach lived with during his short life. There were so many times where I broke down crying while reading this book.
Kristen Neighbors
Jun 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

A beautiful book of hope demonstrated through a young man's faith as he battles as a horrific disease and the support of his family and friends.
Nov 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
[Nov. 2017 book group selection] This is a very inspirational true story about a teenage boy dying from cancer and how he chose to continue living life to the fullest right up to the end. He wanted to do something to make a difference in the world and eventually decided that writing music was the way he would do that. It was neat to read how things came together for him and he was able to record a song ("Clouds") that became a big hit and resonated with many people.

It took me quite a while to g
Allie Harvey
Mar 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fly a Little Higher, a true story of Zach's life with Cancer, and how his family deals with loosing a son, and a sibling. This book does such a good job of teaching the reader how to be strong, and how to work as a family to get through difficult situations, despite people being in different places in life, they can all come together and be strong. This book shows how despite something so difficult, knowing that you are dying, being able to find a light and doing things that make you happy can r ...more
Al Campbell
Jul 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What an inspirational story! This book and story has the amazing ability to show you heart wrenching sadness one minute and tremendous inspiration the next. Zach was a truly inspiring young man, with wisdom well beyond his years, no doubt provided by God to help him experience joy even in the midst of the tremendous trial and suffering he endured. At only 18 years of age, Zach provided a tremendous example of God's grace provided to have joy in life, no matter the circumstances. Amazing. Pain in ...more
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very honest book about dealing with a teenage son with terminal cancer. Follow their journey through the stages of hope, grief, sadness, hope, realization, & making each day what you want it to be.
I couldn't put it down. I'm so glad Zack had so much love, success and influence to guide him through his final years.
I was brought up strict Baptist and as my parent would call me, I'm "backslidden". The family depends so much on God. I just don't get it. I think it is just a crutch to help them throu
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, library
Laura Sobiech writes the memoir of her teenager Zach's 3 year battle with cancer. She includes tidbits about his earlier life to give an idea of the kind of person he always was--a generous, kind, and happy boy.
It is a sad story, but written with uplifting thoughts and views into their family. Zach wrote songs to deal with his feelings and to let others inside his thoughts. Those songs became popular on the radio, the internet, and one televised program. The song that started it all is called
May 16, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm in awe of the courage of this entire family and how openly they laid their story and grief out for the reader. It was an inspiring story, and I found myself being skeptical that this lovely boy was so well put together. He seemed so wise, mature beyond his years and adjusted. As I reflected on that--I think it was perhaps his youth that allowed him to be so. I also really appreciated how his mom shared at the ends moments when he was afraid and frustrated and sad. Showing those emotions alon ...more
Jun 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a very good narrative of a mom's journey of handling her son's fatal disease. I remember hearing about Zach a few years ago, and I even downloaded "Clouds." It's hard not to feel grateful for one's own life and opportunities while or after reading this tale. I give major props to the family, especially the mother, for their faith in God. It's hard to not fall victim to depression or anger when a blow like that happens. I will admit that at the end or towards the end I got choked-up. It ...more
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“Clouds was like a little capsule of God's grace that had been prescribed to the world to soothe the broken hearted.” 7 likes
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