Nothing matters. Only Bird matters. And he flew away.
Jewel never knew her brother Bird, but all her life she has lived in his shadow. Her parents blame Grandpa for the tragedy of their family’s past; they say that Grandpa attracted a malevolent spirit—a duppy—into their home. Grandpa hasn’t spoken a word since. Now Jewel is twelve, and she lives in a house full of secrets.
Jewel is sure that no one will ever love her like they loved Bird, until the night that she meets a mysterious boy in a tree.
Grandpa is convinced that the boy is a duppy, but Jewel knows that he is something more. And that maybe the time has come to break through the stagnant silence of the past.
Entrenched secrets, mysterious spirits, and an astonishing friendship weave together in this extraordinary and haunting debut.
‘Bird is a mysterious, lyrical, and thought-provoking novel from an important new voice in children’s literature.’
‘Crystal Chan has written an enthralling first novel about the darkness, light and beauty that make up the human condition.’
‘A beautifully told story of family and identity, grief and magic. I loved it.’
‘The first line of Bird broke my heart and the rest of them put it back together.’
‘Bird is beautifully captivating, absorbing, and utterly heartbreaking. I cannot recommend this book enough, to both YA readers and adults. I know it’s only January but it’s not too early for me to say that this is one of my favourite books of 2014, and of all time.’
‘The middle-grade equivalent of The Fault in Our Stars. It’s beautiful.’
‘I think Bird is one of the most beautifully written novels I’ve read. The voice of Jewel was a pleasure to read and I adored where Crystal Chan took me on this journey…I adored this book and highly recommend it.’
‘Captivating to read-it’s rich, colourful, tragically happy and wonderful…the words [Chan] uses to tell it are clean and precise. They are punctuated with perfect silences, lifting this story beyond the everyday and making it fly.’
‘Full of interesting ideas about families, friendship, small towns, the nature and power of belief, and the importance of special places.’
‘Chan’s strong characterizations and her way with words make her a writer to watch…A lyrical and buoyant debut.’
‘A writer to watch…the story as a whole reads exceptionally well…a thoughtful book.’