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Nightbird Library Binding – March 10, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—A sweet, if somewhat uneven middle grade tale by beloved adult author Hoffman. Twig is the daughter of the best baker in the town of Sidwell, NY. But Twig has a secret—the town doesn't know that she has an older brother, James, hidden away because of his large black wings, a result of the curse on the men in their family. James's clandestine nighttime jaunts around Sidwell have led fractious locals to talk of hunting down "the monster" in their midst. When a new family moves into the cottage that belonged to the witch who cursed Twig's ancestor, events are set in motion that will change all of their lives forever. Hoffman juggles multiple themes: an environmental thread, with a focus on the rare owls in the woods around Twig's home; a broken family thread (Twig hasn't seen or heard from her father since she was a toddler); a friendship tale of outsiders finding each other; along with bits of romance, curses, and magic. A clever narrator, beautiful imagery, and the quirky cast of secondary characters who populate the oddball town are the bright spots in this mix of fantasy and mystery. Unfortunately, the climax ties every plot line together neatly, and the overly pat ending undercuts an otherwise sophisticated narrative. Still, the spunky protagonist, copious descriptions of mouth-watering baked goods, and terrific cover art guarantee this magical story will find an audience.—Elisabeth Gattullo Marrocolla, Darien Library, CT --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Praise for Nightbird
“Hoffman reminds us that there are secrets everywhere . . . Nightbird soars.”
—The New York Times
“Alice Hoffman has a gift for melding magic and realism in a way that makes nearly anything seem possible.”
—Shelf Awareness, Starred
“The mix of romance and magic is irresistible.”