The Secret Life of Sparrow Delaney and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Usually ships within 1 to 3 weeks.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
The Secret Life of Sparro... has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Eligible for Amazon's FREE Super Saver/Prime Shipping, 24/7 Customer Service, and package tracking. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Secret Life of Sparrow Delaney Paperback – May 27, 2008


See all 10 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback, May 27, 2008
$8.99
$1.35 $0.01

Frequently Bought Together

The Secret Life of Sparrow Delaney + Dark Water Rising
Price for both: $15.98

One of these items ships sooner than the other.

Buy the selected items together
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Greenwillow Books; Reprint edition (May 27, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061131601
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061131608
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,836,746 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

As the seventh daughter of a psychic, great things are expected of Sparrow, but she wants none of it, going so far as to begin her freshman year at a new high school, a bus ride away from Lily Dale, a real-life New York town centered on spiritualism. Nor has she mentioned to her family that she has been talking to spirit guides and seeing ghosts since she was five. But her life plan to eschew the psychic limelight begins to unravel when Luke, a teenage ghost, appears to insist she help him resolve issues that are keeping him from reaching the other side. It won't take readers too long to realize that the sullen (but handsome!) boy she's paired on a project with is Luke's brother, who vehemently denies ghosts and fervently believes his brother is alive. Harper gets everything right here. The intriguing premise is developed into a well-plotted story featuring a range of compelling characters, only some of whom are flesh and blood. A wistful subplot about Sparrow's missing father stays hauntingly unresolved. Cooper, Ilene --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

As the seventh daughter of a psychic, great tings are expected of Sparrow, but she wants none of it, going so far as to begin her freshman year at a new high school, a bus ride away from Lily Dale, a real-life New York town centered on spiritualism. Nor has she mentioned to her family that she has been talking to spirit guides and seeing ghosts since she was five. But he life plan to eschew the psychic limelight begins to unravel when Luke, a teenage ghost, appears to insist she help him resolve issues that are keeping him from reaching the other side. It won't take readers too long to realize that the sullen (but handsome!) boy she's paired on a project with is Luke's brother, who vehemently denies ghosts and fervently believes his brother is alive. Harper gets everything right here. The intriguing premise is developed into a well-plotted story featuring a range of intriguing characters, only some of whom are flesh and blood. A wistful subplot about Sparrow's missing father stays hauntingly unresolved. -- Ilene Cooper, ALA Booklist

Harper's (Boitano's Edge) polished debut novel couches an unexpectedly poignant meditation on loss in a quick-moving plot about ghosts and the spiritual mediums who communicate with them. Fifteen-year-old Sparrow Delaney is the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter and therefore highly gifted in the psychic arts. The only problem: she wants nothing to do with her talent. She trains herself to ignore the ghosts that compete for her attention, at least in the presence of her family and fellow citizens of Lily Dale, N.Y., a (real-life) town that attracts tourists with its famous spiritualists and Spirit meetings. But how can Sparrow shake off the teenage ghost who refuses to stop haunting her unless she helps him, and what does he have to do with the cute boy in the new school she's transferred to in hopes of escaping the Lily Dale weirdness? A steady stream of wit refreshes familiar-seeming story elements. Harper serves up pitch-perfect dialogue from high school athletes and teachers; squabbling mediums; and such clever flourishes as the grandfatherly baker, the 19th-century young Indian gentleman and the exacting female professor who serve as Sparrow's spirit guides. Surprise turns add to the plot's pleasures, but what makes this book stand out most is Harper's attention to the pockets of sorrow in her characters' histories, each of them handled with care. For all of the imagination the author displays in inventing a spirit world, she shows equal skill in probing the nuances of tender emotions, too. -- Publishers Weekly

There's no getting around it: Sparrow Delaney's family is eccentric. She, her six older sisters, her mother and her grandmother live together in an old house that contains one bathroom, four graves in the front yard, bamboo skulls on the porch . . . and a room for communicating with ghosts. that's because the Delaney family is one of the oldest families of mediums in the very old town of Lily Dale. Out of all the mysteries within her family, though, the biggest secret actually belongs to Sparrow. For the past 15 years, she has been consoling her family, who are sorry that her own psychic abilities seem to be nonexistent, in spite of her potential as the seventh child of a seventh child. She's been lying. The only "people" from whom Sparrow cannot hide her abilities are the spirits themselves, but up until her 15th birthday, she just ignored them: she has seen the impoverished, ridiculed life that comes from being a medium, and she wants no part of it. Then she meets Luke, a ghost who is haunting a mysterious (and very cute) boy in Sparrow's history class named Jack. As Sparrow gets to know both Luke and Jack, she wonders if she needs to rethink her stance on being a psychic after all. Sparrow Delaney is the sort of character who is exactly calculated to make the reader fall immediately and irrevocably in love with her, and the book's mystery-laden plot demands "just five more pages" of its reader all the way to its end. Harper alludes to Pride and Prejudice several times throughout the book, and any Jane Austen fan will appreciate the similarities between that story and this one (including a rather unexpected and satisfying ending!). With its masterful charm and superbly creative storyline, the only possible fault with this book is that Harper has not already written two or three sequels to it. -- Cara Chancellor, Kliatt
*Starred Review*


What high-school kid wants to be a freak, especially the kind who talks to dead people? Not Sparrow Delaney, which is why she's keeping the secret from her family of seven women, all skilled mediums, that she can see and talk to ghosts. Evidently, as the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, she has a special psychic gift, but when the ghost of a teenage boy appears to her in her classroom and pleads for her help, she can't ignore him. The current abundance of supernatural and occult books usually have historical settings, but the clever twist in this offering casts Sparrow's family in contemporary Lily Dale, N. Y., a Spiritualist community. Early references to thrift stores and computers clue the reader as modern trappings enhance the confrontations and dilemmas between the dearly departed and the visionary living. Idiosyncratic sisters (all named for birds by their ornithologist father who's now missing), budding romance, a mysterious fatal accident and a live-wire grandmother all test Sparrow's own spirit as she faces her destiny. Sparrow's plight give new meaning to "not a ghost of a chance"--an entertaining one. -- Kirkus Reviews --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
5 star
12
4 star
5
3 star
2
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 19 customer reviews
The relationships between the characters were so interesting!
NY boxergirl
Whimsical and fun, this book is filled to the brim with entertaining and charming characters.
Sandra Brazier
This is the kind of book any tween and teen girl who likes Harry Potter is going to love.
Sally Richards

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on August 3, 2007
Format: Hardcover
My aunt bought me this book because she like the cover. I thought it looked neat too. But, once I started reading it I couldn't put it down! I love the character of Sparrow and her very interesting sisters. Her grandma reminded me of my own (minus the kung fu and baboon skulls!) The story is great I recommend this book to anyone looking for an entertaining read. I hope more Sparrow books come soon!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By James Buckley on August 28, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Teen girls have enough issues to worry about in their lives without having to worry about talking to ghosts...and hiding that fact from their slightly loony families. But that's Sparrow's big problem. This book does a great job of getting inside the head of his very grounded--yet spiritually deep--young woman and telling about the tough choices she has to make. Lovers of ghost stories will really love this book, as will anyone who wants to meet a very cool girl, one who sounds like she'd be really cool to hang out with. And since she hangs out with really cool ghosts . . . you get a dozen "people" for the price of one! Teen girls will really enjoy this fine book, as well as learn something about the real-life world of "spiritualists."
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By NY boxergirl on September 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
My favorite thing about this book was that although Sparrow has a "secret power" the true struggle in her life is trying to deal with the pressures of high school (popularity, best friends, BOYS!)and the complications created by her zany but loveable family. The author is able to deal with heavy issues (death, "losing" a parent, sibling rivalry, etc.) and yet make you laugh as well as cry. The relationships between the characters were so interesting! By the end of the book I felt like I knew them personally and had learned that Sparrow Delaney wasn't the only one with a "Secret Life". Who doesn't know what it is like to hide a part of yourself in order to fit-in? I think we all sometimes feel this way and that is the true power of this book. It is a very enjoyable read!! (Other similar books that I enjoyed: Wicked Lovely )
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By J. Tanny on August 1, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Sparrow Delaney was a really fun character and very easy to route for. Her talents as a medium were fun and I can see author Suzanne Harper writing more stories about Sparrow her ghostly friends.

PLOT
The plot of "Sparrow Delaney" could easily have been light and fluffy, but it wasn't entirely. Harper takes the book into another direction when she introduces Seth Dawson's death and its effect on the Dawson family. That brought the book a bit of levity I think it needed. Harper takes the light and fluffy aspects of supernatural fiction, mixes it with the reality of family issues and creates a really great mood for her plot.

CHARACTERS
One thing about this book: Harper leaves the reader with the idea that she is not done developing her characters. They felt... unfinished... as if she didn't let the dough rise long before baking the bread. At the end of this book, I couldn't help wondering how Sparrow will deal with her family now that her talents are "outted". What will happen to the relationship between Sparrow and both Dawson boys? What about Sparrow's Dad? Not to mention the other Delaney sisters. For example the brooding Raven -- she seemed interesting enough to write a whole story just on her.

Using the town of Lily Dale, NY as another character in the book worked well for this story. However, I would have liked to have seen even more of the town and its "zany" residents. Although Harper mentions real historical figures like the Fox Sisters, she doesn't make them part of the story. I like the idea of meshing real history into fiction (without it becoming historical fiction).

Perhaps Suzanne Harper has the next couple of Sparrow Delaney books already waiting in the wings.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Riney on October 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Sparrow is the last of seven sisters in a house full of girls, which includes her mother and her crazy grandmother. One thing all girls have in common- they can communicate with ghosts.
Sparrow seems to be the only one of her off-the-wall family who does not want to communicate with ghosts, which is ironic considering she is the only one who can actually see them. However, one ghost refuses to be ignored, and won't be set aside, forcing Sparrow to finally accept her gift.

The plot seems obvious enough but I can't help but love this book. Its funny and cute, and being one of five girls in a house with no men, I can relate with Sparrows plight. I loved the essentric characters, each well rounded with their own sepperate personality, which is quite a feet seeing how there are so many of them.

I loved this book- read it when you are looking for a smile.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By D. Barnes on August 6, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Lots to like in this book! Sparrow Delaney is smart, sweet and witty--the kind of friend anyone would want. All the other characters are quirky and fun, as well. Tugs at your heart, yet keeps your smiling all the way through!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Terri Rowan on July 14, 2008
Format: Paperback
Reviewed by Christina Wantz Fixemer
on 07/13/2008

Sparrow Delaney is the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter. Family lore has it that Sparrow should have a great deal of talent--but not just any talent. The family gift is that of communication with those who have Passed On. In other words, they all talk to dead people.

Everyone but Sparrow, that is. Well, that's what Sparrow wants them to think. She's been seeing, hearing, and smelling ghosts since she was five years old. The family medium business is not her thing, and she doesn't want to be dragged in to it. When she's given the chance to attend a new high school where nobody knows her, she signs up. It's the first time in her life where she can play the part of a normal kid... until the ghost of a teen boy starts to haunt her.

Sparrow is faced with the toughest choices of her life. Real life teens will relate to the pressures to fit in. At what point is "normalcy" better than embracing who you are? For Sparrow, it is the choice whether to give up the pretense of not being a medium. For the girl down the block, it could be the choice of being "normal" or indulging a passion that may not meet her peers' standards of "cool."

Harper's writing is fresh and fun. Although Sparrow comes off as whiny and selfish at times, her background compensates for most of it. This novel was so fun that I finished it in half a day. There were some loose ends, but I feel there is room for a series in which said ends could be addressed. There should be a series starring Sparrow's family: Grandma Bee, Mother, and six sisters with bird names (Oriole, Raven, Wren, Dove, and the twins Lark and Linnet) are great characters. They range from eccentric to, well, eccentric.

THE SECRET LIFE OF SPARROW DELANEY is a fun read for girls everywhere.

4.5 Books
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?