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4.10  ·  Rating details ·  1,500 ratings  ·  340 reviews
A girl who was born on the day her brother Bird died has grown up in a house of silence and secrets. When she meets John, a mysterious new boy in her rural Iowan town, those secrets start to come out.
ebook, 304 pages
Published January 28th 2014 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
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4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,500 ratings  ·  340 reviews

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Feb 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Secrets, silence and little lies

Joy is like a child… You feed it or it dies.

Where was all this joy, and where does joy go when it leaves your family? Does it goes to someone else’s family, soak into the earth, or does it dissolve away like your breath in the winter? And if it doesn’t leave like this, then why isn’t there any left for me?

This was the 7th out of 8 novels that were selected for the KJV contest 2015-2016 and by far one of the finest young adult novels of the selection. Bird pleasant
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

4.5 stars

Bird really surprised me--the writing was absolutely spectacular, I loved the prose so much and I found it hard to put it down because of it. Crystal Chan also mastered the characters. They are perfectly flawed (which sounds awfully contradictory) and I felt myself growing onto them when I close the book. The presence of family is obvious and the drama within was also handled well. You know what? Bird ticks all the boxes for a successful contemporary
Nov 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This middle-grade book has gotten much attention, and rightfully so. Chan has a fluid, wise, poetic prose style and a large heart that leaves everything on the page. As someone who is biracial, I wish I had had this book growing up. The narrator, Jewel, is of Jamaican and Mexican descent, and Chan manages to weave in culture, geology, astronomy, and the supernatural all in one touching tale of loss and healing. In a world where children are becoming slaves to the screen, I wish for them Chan's w ...more

When I first heard about Bird from Text I felt really excited. It sounded gorgeous and special and a little bit mysterious. Plus the cover is seriously something else (in person it is even more striking). I dove straight in the day it arrived and had no idea what to expect. It took less than a paragraph to feel hooked, and less than a chapter for Jewel to set up camp in my heart.

Jewel is my favourite kind of heroine: fierce and creative and lonely and marching along to the beat of her own drum.
C.G. Drews
I'm actually procrastinating this review! (Proof: I just found this super sweet GIF of Sam and Frodo after they nearly drown.) Why am I procrastinating?

It was so dang good I can't turn it into words!

5-stars isn't even enough! It tore up all my feels and hit all my heartstrings. I just want to gather up EVERYONE in the book and hug them. (I don't even do hugs. But they all need one.)

It's totally sad and beautiful all at once. Can I just mention that this is a debut?! Imagine how fantastic the
Aug 09, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Büyükbabam, ağabeyim John'un ölümüne neden olduğu günden sonra bir daha konuşmamış." Sf:7

Bird is Crystal Chan’s debut novel. Set in Caledonia, Iowa, the story revolves around twelve year old Jewel Campbell. Jewel lives with her parents, her grandfather, and their grief. On the day of her birth, her five year old brother jumped off a cliff, believing her could fly. Her grandfather has never spoken since that day and Jewel has lived with the feeling that she is a sub-par replacement to the son her parents loved so dearly.

I was hooked as soon as Jewel started telling her story; she’s s
Eugenia (Genie In A Book)
Jan 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
*This review also appears on the blog Chasm of Books*

Thank you to Text Publishing Australia for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Nothing matters, I realized. Only Bird Matters. And he flew away.

I found Bird to be a beautifully written novel of grief, friendship and the idea that although things might not always be what they seem, things can still work out in the end. Crystal Chan has used some evocative imagery throughout the book to set a lovely scene for how
Kelly (Diva Booknerd)
Win a copy of bird

Bird was a beautifully haunting and poignant story about love, loss and how sometimes a family needs to fall apart before we can put it back together. Jewel is an intelligent and empathetic young lady, who deserves to be seen, to be nurtured and to be loved. Her parents may not have intentionally placed expectations upon Jewel, but Jewel certainly has. She sees herself as the replacement child for her brother Bird. Where Bird had the bes
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

I did not RUE my decision.*

My experience with Bird by Crystal Chan really reaffirms my love of audiobooks. See, this is a book I NEVER would have picked up were it not for the fact that I’m powerless against a celebrity narrator. The blurb of the book really didn’t appeal to me, but Amandla Stenberg is adorable, so I had to try this book. Though it’s very much not my usual type of book, Bird by Crystal Chan really worked, particularly due to Stenberg’s performance.

Read th
Jun 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Okay I just finished this and I'm still wiping the tears away. "Grandpa stopped speaking the day he killed my brother John". Yeah that's the first sentence in this book so if you have a heart at some point your going to cry during this book.
This is a must read. Seriously. I didn't want to put it down.
Sep 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My ARC of Bird was sent to me by the publisher through Goodreads First Reads giveaway. I was not obligated to write a positive review. This is my full and honest opinion.

Cover Blurb: Yes or No? There's nothing very exciting about the cover art, and normally I wouldn't pay it much mind. But I do have a thing for silhouettes, and once I saw the silhouette I decided to read the synopsis. And that's what really caught my attention. Intrigue-level aside, it is aesthetically pleasing. I love the blue-
Yılın bitmesine daha çok var ama şimdiden bu yılki en favori kitabım belli oldu. Çok uzun süredir,belki de birkaç yıldır, beni bu kadar etkileyen bir kitap olmamıştı.

Jewel Iowa'da yaşayan Jamaika-Meksika'lı bir kız çocuğu. Abisi John a.k.a ''Kuş'' büyük babası yüzünden uçurumdan atlayarak uçmaya çalışıyor ve 5 yaşındayken ölüyor, aynı gün de Jewel doğuyor ve ailenin hayatı alt üst oluyor. Kuş'un ölümünden sonra büyük baba hiç konuşmuyor, anne babası da her zaman sessizlik içinde. Jewel da Kuş'un
Dec 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received Bird on Christmas Eve, it was a great early present. I dived straight into reading it as I won the book in a giveaway and was asked to review it. Reading the first few pages it jumps straight into what the young girl has coped with through her life. Instead of some books where they take a while to get to the backstory, with Bird it is in the first few lines. Bird is a different genre style to must books as I stick usually to, paranormal and fantasy. But this book has definitely opened ...more
Sep 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
Inspired by nature, superstition, and tradition Bird by Crystal Chan is a stunning middle grade debut. In a small Iowan town Jewel is born on the day her brother dies. Now 12 years old for Jewel living in a home filled with silent grief and secrets is all she has ever known, until she finds a boy in her favorite climbing tree.

I thoroughly enjoyed this read, the writing style is so down-to-earth. Chan takes time to beautifully describe our connection with the natural world, a central theme in th
Jan 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All I can really say about this gorgeous book is that it resonated a lot with me.

I randomly picked this up because it looked and sounded interesting and I was taken by surprise. I was not disappointed at all. A very refreshing read and it made me realise that I'd love to see more YA Fiction novels from the perspective of younger teens. Rather than the 15-16 age group it would be interesting to see more novels from the perspective of a twelve year old as the mindsets of the different ages is very
Vicki Cose
Nov 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Loved the beauty of the language in this story!
Plot is filled with multiple themes of
friendship, family and death.
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Bu kitap nasıl köşede unutulur? Kederi anlatan güzel kitaplardan üstelik küçük yaştaki bir çocuğun gözünden. Sessizlikler, yürek burkulmaları, mutsuzluklar... Severek okudum.
Michelle Glatt
Jan 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
This story is beautiful and oh how it makes my heart ache. Jewel has a wonderful spirit that shines through despite the grief that she feels and that surrounds and even strangles her family.
Mar 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best-of-2017
In den Sternenhimmel gucken, auf Bäume klettern und nach besonderen Steinen graben - in John hat Jewel einen Freund gefunden, mit dem all das noch viel mehr Spaß macht. Zusammen mit ihm ist sie sogar mutig genug, dem Bürgermeister die Meinung zu sagen und ihren Eltern Fragen zu stellen.  Fragen über diesen einen Tag, an dem Jewel geboren wurde, ihr Bruder starb und sich das Leben ihrer Familie für immer verändert hat....  

Erzählt aus der Sicht der zwölfjährigen Jewel hat diese Geschichte eine ga
Jan 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: wish-list
Jewel was born the day her brother John ‘Bird’ died. On that day, Jewel’s birthday, her Grandpa stopped talking and the whole family became quiet and sad … and they’ve stayed that way for the last 12 years.

Then, on her 12th birthday, Jewel climbs a tree and meets a boy called John. John is African-American, adopted by white parents and obsessed with becoming an astronaut. In Jewel, he finds a kindred spirit, not least of all because in their small Iowa town Jewel and John stick out;

“You’re not
Nov 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I feel like I just received a warm, caring hug. It’s not something that will protect or shield me from the pitfalls of life, but it is a hug that tells me that I’m never alone.

Title: Bird

Author: Crystal Chan

Genre: Realistic Fiction (Coming of Age)

Reviewer: C

Rating: 5/5 stars

Summary: On the day Jewel was born, her brother Bird died. Ever since that day, Jewel’s life has been filled with silence and unspoken secrets about the past. Ignored by her parents and a grandfather who has not spoken a sing
Jeann (Happy Indulgence)
This review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!

Bird swooped in, gripped my heart and made it soar with its poignant, heart breaking story rippling with grief, and ending with hope.

Jewel’s story is aching with heart break and lost moments, as her family seem to be a broken shell. She never knew her brother Bird, but feels his presence in everything around her – her family’s grief, her grandpa’s silence and anger, and her private place at the cliff. She’s an unlucky child w
Apr 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Bird, this novel that hit me hard but left me the pieces to put myself back together was more than I expected when I opened the pages and I started to read about Jewel and her family. She was born the night her five-year old brother decided to fly off the boulder because his name was Bird and he had dreams of flying. Imagine celebrating your birthday every year while your parents are grieving over the loss of a child, it’s really not much of a celebration. What happened on the day of her birth, ...more
Feb 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
When Bird died, his sister Jewel was born. Her grandfather stopped speaking and the family were left grieving, grief that never seemed to be coming to an end. Jewel’s parents blamed Grandpa for Bird’s death. This stemmed from Bird’s real name being John, but Grandpa said he looked more like a Bird. Bird took himself to the cliff one day, to see if he could really fly. He couldn’t.

One aspect of this book that really grabbed me was Crystal Chan’s writing. Even from the first sentence, I was utter
Lucia Ashta
Sep 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
This book was deep, moving, and poignant, written with simple language and beautiful prose. The story moved along nicely, the characters were heartfelt, and the story was moving. The story was both sad and joyful at the same time.

The story was also unusual, and I enjoyed it that much more because of this. The author explored what could be considered a tragic concept and gave it depth and beauty, and used it as a basis for character growth. At the end of the day, all people want the same thing: l
Feb 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I won this book through goodreads first-reads and I loved it. It's really aimed at young teenagers I would say, but the simplicity in the writing made it such a relaxing book that I was immediately drawn in and felt calm just sitting down to read. The writing is beautiful.

The story's lovely, especially the friendship that develops between Jewel and the boy that she meets. For me the best thing about this book were their interactions and their growing relationship. Two very clever children sharin
Norberto Alves
Feb 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-lidos
Primeiramente é um livro triste desde a primeira frase do primeiro parágrafo. Os temas que encontrei aqui, como morte, amor, diferentes culturas, religião, luto, amizade, perdas, solidão, estão todos ligados e, embora não seja exatamente pesado, é um livro denso. Apesar disso, a escrita da autora faz com que a leitura seja rápida. O dia do nascimento de Joia desencadeia todos os fatos em que o livro se constroi, e muitas vezes foi difícil ler sem me emocionar com as palavras da menina. Ótimo!
Gayle Rosengren
Feb 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
BIRD is a beautifully written story about a character who will climb into your heart and never leave. Lyrical prose, fully developed characters, and a compelling situation all combine to make this a must-read for anyone who loves middle grade literature. I was fortunate enough to read an advanced reader copy of this book, but you'll be able to find it at bookstores and libraries in January.
Melissa Landers
Apr 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2k14
An achingly poignant and beautifully written story of love, loss, coming of age, family bonds, and second chances. Fantastic debut, Crystal!
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Crystal Chan watched with amazement at the exotic zoo outbreak in Zanesville, Ohio in 2011, where scores of animals—hungry lions, panthers, and tigers—ran loose around the county. That incident helped inspire her most recent novel, All That I Can Fix. When Crystal isn’t writing, her passion is giving diversity talks to adults and kids alike, telling stories on Wisconsin Public Radio, and hosting c ...more
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“That's one of the things about adults: the most important rules to keep are the ones they never tell you and the ones they get the angriest about if you break.” 12 likes
“If you give up too much of yourself, too fast, then someone can just up and take it away.” 9 likes
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