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The Bird in Me Flies Hardcover – Picture Book, August 1, 2020

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 ratings

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Hardcover, Picture Book
$13.18 $12.89

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 2-6-This fictionalized biography depicts Swedish artist Berta Hansson's childhood. Told in verse, the text chronicles the events leading up to Hansson's departure from her village as a young woman in 1927. Hansson wanted to continue her education and pursue her interest in art; she was expected to stay and help with the family farm until she got married. Her passion for art, however, couldn't be suppressed. Hansson's uncle, who was a painter himself, inspired his niece. The family doctor, who noted and nurtured Hansson's talents, also supported her. Ultimately, her father gave her permission to leave the farm and embark on an art career. The illustrations, done in gouache, collage and watercolor, add context and detail to the story, allowing for the passage of time and change of place without explicitly naming these transitions. The power of Hansson's story comes through the matter-of-fact first-person narration (informed by her diaries) and is enhanced by Lundberg's illustrations, which echo Hansson's art. A lengthy afterword continues and completes the details of Hansson's journey to becoming a prominent expressionist; photographs and original artwork are included. VERDICT Anyone who has cultivated a dream that defies societal demands and cultural expectations will appreciate this affecting story of a young girl's struggle to achieve her creative aspirations. Recommended for larger collections to supplement artist biographies.-Lynn Van Auken, Oak Bluffs Sch., MAα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


The text itself is often spare and melancholy, translated beautifully from the original Swedish by Epstein, but it’s also infused with intimacy and familial warmth. The striking illustrations―of gouache, aquarelle, and collage―reflect the emotional journey. STARRED REVIEW


Melancholy and moving.

-- Kirkus Reviews ― Kirkus Reviews

Lundberg’s handsome biography of self-discovery remembers an artist who came to know without a doubt who she was meant to be.

Publishers Weekly

[I]mpressive. Certainly worthy of discovery.

A Fuse #8 Production Blog

A pensive, thoughtful and thought-provoking read.

-- Fab Book Reviews Blog

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Groundwood Books; Reprint edition (August 1, 2020)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 120 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1773062603
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1773062600
  • Reading age ‏ : ‎ 9 - 12 years
  • Lexile measure ‏ : ‎ 600L
  • Grade level ‏ : ‎ 4 - 7
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.1 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6.75 x 0.76 x 8.25 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    5.0 out of 5 stars 4 ratings

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