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The Girl Who Read To Birds Paperback – August 9, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Michael Titus lives with three cats, including one who is a ghost, surrounded by the hauntingly beautiful mountains of rural West Virginia. He is fond of coffee and tea, and collects small tin wind-up toy robots and bowler hats. He is currently writing his second book.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 60 pages
  • Publisher: L.T. Godsmith Press (August 9, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0983821208
  • ISBN-13: 978-0983821205
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.2 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,816,214 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

As I write this, I am 56 years old. I live in a small, isolated -- very rural -- town nestled between the lovely hills that make West Virginia a beguiling place to call home. My town does have a sort of Twilight Zone character about it. I suppose that's one reason I'm still here. I live with two cats -- rather, they allow me share a house with them. They don't let me out much, so I have plenty of time to write. I wear bowler hats, and collect small tin robots and other toys.

I've been writing since 7th grade. I still have my father's old Royal typewriter that he used in college. He passed it on to me, so I could learn to type, instead of jotting notes all over anything at hand, including the walls. My mother was quite happy about his gift to me. I'm still a compulsive note-taker.

I'm not going to tell you I grew up poor. If you have a lively imagination, you've got all you need. I will admit that my parents said we had very little. I was astonished to hear this. We had books. My three brothers and I grew up with stories: Grimm's Fairy Tales, Hans Christian Andersen, Mother Goose, A.A. Milne, Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, Poe, Emily Dickinson, Ray Bradbury, comic books. I cannot recall a single night that we weren't read to. I learned to read well before kindergarten. It was hard to put down a book and go outside to play, when my mother ordered it -- to find some elusive peace for herself -- although we were free then to roam the streets and farmlands that surrounded us. We did so with a glorious abandon that doesn't seem to exist in the present time.

I've written in all genres, but now devote myself exclusively to fiction. I don't know what to call what I write. It's modern urban fairy tale fantasy. That's as close as I can get. I write about people who are fairly normal. Odd, quirky things happen to them. I like to break the glass between the real and surreal, while keeping the story entirely believable. It could have happened. It should have happened. It did happen, somewhere -- or sometime, and I'm only telling you what I heard.

I am the author of the children's/YA book, "The Girl Who Read To Birds." I also wrote "The Tenth Life," with Brett Fernau. My current project is a large collection of short stories, nearly finished. They are all separate, yet joined together by a common theme. Some titles: "Six Legs, Two Legs," Rorschach's Fleas," "Addergest," and "Is That You, Pettigrew?" I'm hoping you'll enjoy this new book as much as I've loved writing it. I've also written five books for the award-winning "flattenme" series.

I write because: 1. I have to. I simply cannot not write; 2. I'm not all that good at anything else; 3. There are stories I want to read. I can't find them. So I write them.

I truly thank you for the visit. I thank all of you who have read, reviewed, and "liked" my books. I also write for all of you.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Zaz on August 24, 2011
Format: Paperback
I've waited for this book for some time and it was well worth the wait. It is simply beautiful. Michael Titus has such an interesting way with words and Julie Miller's illustrations make me wish I was in them. If you are a bit of a dreamer, I'm betting you'll relate to this story. I think I might need to read it again, this time under an oak tree wearing a hat just to see what happens.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By jgemela on September 18, 2011
Format: Paperback
This wonderful book fell into my hands long after my parenting days were over. I wish it had been around then, both for my daughter's sake and mine, for it's a wise and beautiful book, written for kids who are a little different, a little more imaginative and eccentrically attentive than most, and for parents who worry that these gifts may prove expensive. Avery Street wears her grandfather's bowler hat to school and has a special relationship with birds, of course this gets her in trouble. Both the moving story and the magical images convey Avery's specialness, and both vividly render the challenges she faces. What happens to her is at once an ancient tale (think of Ovid) and a compelling contemporary allegory of responsible refusal to conform.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Debra on August 30, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a wonderfully written and illustrated story that captures one's attention like a classic fairy tale. Michael Titus has a special gift for poignant, poetic, even mystical descriptions of both the physical and emotional world. His narrative, as well as Julie Miller's illustrations, also excel at a magical blending of reality and fantasy. For any parent who wants to encourage their child's exploration of imagination and creativity, an appreciation of their own uniqueness as a human being, and the subtle but powerful aspects of the relationship between children and parents, this is the book to read - not just for the child, but for the parent as well.

- John Suler and Debra Finnegan-Suler
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Colleen Anderson on August 19, 2011
Format: Paperback
This book is a wonderful story for any child (or adult) who has ever felt they didn't quite belong in the family, school, or neighborhood where they live. Julie Miller's sensitive illustrations bring beautiful dimension to this odd, mysterious, and emotionally satisfying story. Read this book aloud to someone you love.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Julie L. Miller on August 12, 2011
Format: Paperback
OK, so I'm the illustrator and designer--still, I think this book is absolutely beautiful. I signed on to illustrate this book because I read Michael Titus's story and fell in love. It's a tale about an eccentric, intelligent and creative girl who finds something very special out about herself. This discovery opens worlds to her that offer her a new path. It speaks to that creative, curious child within us all; about how we're all asked to conform, to leave childish dreams behind. Avery Street listens to her heart.

How far would you go to follow your dreams?

It's a beautiful tale to be enjoyed by young and old alike. I'd say mature kids 10 and up will be delighted with this book, which is filled with full-page, lush color illustrations.

Do yourself a favor and buy one for someone you love today.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By otarakiwi on October 2, 2011
Format: Paperback
I just finished reading this book and I loved it!!! I wish I had the author's talent for describing the scenes in the book that make the reader really feel like he or she was actually in the house and was right there in the woods.
This book should be in every kids library as the illustrations are breathtaking and make you want to jump into the scenes.

If you are looking for a book to make kids want to read get this first!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By William J MIlls on August 15, 2011
Format: Paperback
Michael has always been a talented writer. I have known him for over three decades and have had the opportunity to read some of his other gems. Looking forward to seeing this in my and my grandchildren's mailbox.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By mensabitch on September 21, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I will remember this story and these images for the rest of my life.

The adroit and fluid writing is accompanied by almost-3D photographs of a fantastic nature. Throughout the book, there is an absorbing immediacy that compels one to become deeply immersed in the personality of young Avery Street, and to feel compassionate about the alienating hardships she endures. Yet, and yet, the novel's finish was for me, most unexpected and yet so fulfilling.

Perhaps I identified so much with Avery because I was a quirky youth myself, but I feel that there's something for everyone in this most readable of books. Not only is it suitable for young adults, it is a story that will touch the heart of anyone with a tender spirit who still believes in wishes, desires, will, and magic.

Please give as a gift, pass your copy on, or donate to a library. This is something good.

My congratulations to the author, Michael Titus, and the illustrator, Julie Miller. You made me wistfully dream again.
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