“This is a deeply moving novel.”– Anita Shreve, New York Times bestselling author of The Pilot’s Wife
“Sherbrooke has a deft understanding of human nature and a painter’s eye for place”–Brunonia Barry, New York Times bestselling author of The Lace Reader
Biotech entrepreneur Tess Whitford has built her life around the certainty of science and logic, and she thrives on solving problems. But when one of her dearest friends exhausts the reaches of medicine while fighting cancer and grabs onto the hope that traditional healers in Ecuador might save her, Tess has to let go of everything she knows—and every instinct she has. She can’t deny Ellie a request that might be her last and so flies to Ecuador to help.
Together with Joline, another close college friend whose spiritual work inspired the trip, they travel to the small mountain village of Otavalo. Immersed in nature and introduced to strange ancient ceremonies, the three friends are pushed to recognize that good health is not only physical. Tess grapples with her inability to trust; Ellie struggles with a painful secret; and Joline worries about the contract she made with an aggressive businessman whose ambitions could destroy the delicate fabric of the local community. When an ayahuasca ceremony goes awry and an unlikely betrayal suddenly threatens to unravel their decades-long friendship, these three very different women awaken to a shared realization: they each have a deep need for healing.
Fill the Sky captures the challenges of mid-life, the hope we seek when we explore alternative paths, and the profound nature of women’s friendships. It’s a beautifully told and moving story about lifelong friends, the power of the spirit, and the age-old quest to not simply fight death but to shape an authentic life.
While Fill the Sky is a work of fiction, it was inspired by my travels to Ecuador and Peru. all of the ceremonies described in the book are rituals I experienced personally. I am grateful for the opportunity to turn the warm embrace I found walking amongst the local people of those two extraordinary cultures into a nest for this story.