Fred Gorrell's Reviews > Birdwing

Birdwing by Rafe Martin
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's review
Jul 26, 11

really liked it
bookshelves: fiction-youngadult

This story begins with an idea from the Brothers Grimm, developing and exploring it in a way that will be very powerful for many young readers. A family lost in the woods is compelled to cut a deal with a witch: the princes are turned into swans, to be returned to human state only if the princess can spin magical thread, weave cloth and make shirts for each brother. She nearly succeeds, but one brother is returned to a quasi-human state, as one wing remains instead of turning back into an arm; time ran out with one sleeve still incomplete. The be-winged boy finds pleasure in the special power his body gives him to relate to the animal world, and he runs away upon learning his father plans to have his wing taken off and replaced. The story is told in a delightfully cheeky, hip voice. It is full of adventure, fantasy and romance, and it should resonate with any teenager's sense of being an outsider.

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