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4.27  ·  Rating details ·  481 ratings  ·  144 reviews
One young girl’s determination to save the flock she calls family creates a lasting impact on her community and in her heart.

Ten years ago, an impossible thing happened: a flock of pigeons picked up a human baby who had been abandoned in an empty lot and carried her, bundled in blankets, to their roof. Coo has lived her entire life on the rooftop with the pigeons who saved
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published March 3rd 2020 by Greenwillow Books
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Average rating 4.27  · 
Rating details
 ·  481 ratings  ·  144 reviews

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Oct 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's such a sweet story. I loved getting to lose myself in Coo's world. I would recommend this book to any middle-grade reader, and to any adult, for that matter. I think Coo is something that people of all ages can enjoy and learn from, and I hope that's exactly what happens. ...more
What a charmingly sweet debut novel! Coo has lived for ten years with the pigeons who rescued and raised her when she was left on the steps of an abandoned factory. But when her best pigeon friend is hurt and the winter gets rough, Coo has to learn to live among humans, with all their confusing rules! I think this will be a hit with fans of Katherine Applegate, and Cory Leonardo's THE SIMPLE ART OF FLYING. ...more
Stacy Hackney
Oct 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved this unique and beautiful story.

COO is about a young girl raised by a flock of pigeons. Coo (the main character) has never left the roof where she lives with her pigeons until one of her flock is injured and she must find her way into the human world to save her friend. Noel's realistic depiction of Coo's journey to trusting other humans and finding her voice is a joy to read. The concept of a girl raised by pigeons on a roof in New York City feels utterly real in Noel's capa
May 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books, children
I loved Coo!!

Such a lovely and tender book. Obviously, some illogical matters lurk here and there, but I don't think there's a point in blowing holes in a middle grade novel. About a girl who spent the majority of her life with pigeons.

I loved the way pigeon language was distinguished. Somewhat exciting for me as a linguist! Their syntax was marked with a end-position pronoun and the lack of 'to be' verb, or other verbs altogether, despite having them in their register. Also, Coo utilizes the s
Travess Smalley
Feb 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Coo is a marvelous book, and I'm so proud to be married to the author. I've watched my wife work on it for many years and I am so excited that now others can read this incredible story about a very unusual girl finding her family, home, and place in the world. Coo is at once a fantastical book but also incredibly comforting and familiar in a classic way. It’s been through so many changes, big and small, and I’m so proud of her for writing it, crafting it, into something truly wonderful. I highly ...more
Pam  Page
May 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A sweet story that will take you to Coo's world of pigeons, the birds who raised her when she was abandoned by her mother. I already miss the endearing characters from Coo's best friend, Burr, to her human friend who changes her life, Tully, and even crazy RooHoo! The scenario sounded strange to me when I read the synopsis but this truly is a story of love and how we can impact other's lives by caring. ...more
Dec 28, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sweet. Good for kids who like animals.

Apparently pigeons sound just like Yoda. Who knew?
Nov 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Coo was one of the most beautiful MG reads I've read this year! I honestly can't stop gushing about this book, and I've added this to my list of all-time fave MG reads. I had zero expectations when I started reading this, but deep down, I knew I would connect to this story. The first thing I should mention is that there are parts of the story that read as completely unbelievable, for example, a dozen pigeons carrying a baby with a blanket from the street to a building rooftop, and then that baby ...more
Arianne Costner
Apr 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow! I don't have words eloquent enough to describe how I feel about this book. From the start, I was whisked away by the surreal, almost magical permise. The birds were a hoot (ha!), and each of the characters in the book were well-rounded and had character arcs of their own. Coo is extremely lovable and a great role model--she is compassionate, strong, brave. With its originality and beautiful writing, this one feels like an instant classic. There were sweet moments, bittersweet moment--you ma ...more
Lauren W.
Feb 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Seriously, could this book get any cuter?! Coo is a young girl who has been raised by pigeons. Her entire world view has been shaped by them and when she meets a kind older lady who feeds them regularly, she develops a deep bond with her. She must balance her new life with her responsibilities to her flock and keep nasty people from hurting her family. A must-read that will teach kids about compassion, family, responsiblity, and the world
Ellery Alouette
Apr 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful book.
Apr 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is such a cute book. I think it is geared for upper middle grades. The "bird speak" might be a little difficult and confusing for younger readers. Thanks to the author and publisher for an ARC of this book. ...more
Jul 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids
I loved this book. I guess it was the right book at the right time. The author describes it as fairy tale and that makes sense. It's definitely a flight of fantasy but so urban and contemporary. I liked thinking about birds more than humans for a while ...more
Stefan Bachmann
Dec 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved this. The perfect kids' book for the holidays, wintry and cozy and gentle and fun. Also, full of lovely descriptions of food, and just lovely descriptions in general: "Outside, the snow from the blizzard had turned crusty and grayish as stale frosting. Icicles sparkled form the tree branches. It was cold, but the sun was bright, and Coo was warm."

May 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An unlikely premise--a girl raised by pigeons? But the flock is a good family, though with a different view on life, literally and figuratively, than humans have. One bird in particular is her closest companion, because he is different from the flock.
This story is very good--you might think it is a little predictable, because Coo has to come in contact with the human world to find her place in it, and some humans' view of the pigeons as "vermin" makes for a conflict that Coo has to help solve.
Erin Kelly
Oct 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this book so much!
Mar 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
COO is a hopeful, imaginative story that can teach kids, and remind adults, about the power of community and being a good citizen. With the heart and charm of the very best middle grade novels, COO shows us what it means to care for our “flock” by standing up against short-sighted harmful policies, by asking for help from trusted adults, and by being willing to believe that our actions can make a difference in individual lives as well as our society at large. As Coo, a child who grew up among pi ...more
Rick Buttafogo
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Cute. Kids will love it and maybe some of us humans will even begin to love pigeons.
Feb 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A gently moving tale with depth, heart, and characters I won't soon forget. I absolutely loved it (as did my daughter, who insisted we buy the audiobook as well so she could re-experience it). One of my favorite middle grade novels of 2020! ...more
Michelle Misra
Apr 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I have no words for how amazing this book was!!!!
Karen McKenna
Jul 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found myself lost in Coo's world and escaping from the pandemic for just a little while. I was very grateful to get to read a #LitReviewCrew ARC, and initially the size of the ARC had me a bit concerned for my middle grade readers, but once I started reading I realized the font size, spacing, and chapter length are very well suited to this middle grade reader. I became so engrossed in the story I just flew through it. What surprised me was how real the pigeons felt to me as characters, how dif ...more
Dec 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
"Coo" is not just something a pigeon says-- it's also the name of a girl raised by a flock of them. Abandoned as a baby, these feathered friends took her to their rooftop, where she's lived the past eleven years. When her favorite pigeon, Burr, is injured, she leaves the roof in search of help; rumor has it there's a lady who helps sick pigeons. Coo is then thrust into the human world, with a language and customs that she knows nothing about. The pigeon healer, Tully, takes Coo under her wing, d ...more
Terri M.
What a great start to 2o2o!

Coo is a delightful uplifting read. (Yes, you do need to suspend your belief a bit, but it is worth it.) As a middle grade novel, it hits all right notes. I loved Coo and her amazing world. This book made me smile a lot.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Leonard Kim
Jul 04, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would have said this was a good but “conventional” feral child book, except I think such books may not be as common now as they were in the past, though the tropes might still be familiar to children from things like the Disney Jungle Book movie of 2016. I think fans of The One and Only Ivan might enjoy this one.
Feb 03, 2021 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. Telling someone that a girl was raised by pigeons sounds weird, but it was actually a pleasure to read. I listened the the audio version, and the accents and speech patterns were entertaining and held my interest. Coo is determined to save her flock. One child can make a difference.
Feb 16, 2021 rated it it was amazing
The cutest heart warming juvenile fiction book I've read in a long while. ...more
Jun 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A very cute story! I highly recommend it.
Macy Davis
Sep 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This was the most charming middle grade novel. The premise seems insane, but it's so delightful and entertaining and well-written and I absolutely tore through it. ...more
The Reading Writing Puppet
Jun 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
So cute, Coo and the pigeons are the cutest. Love them. Little girl Coo is abandoned and raised by pigeons. I love birds and the story is told through the eyes of Coo as she learns about the human world.
Jun 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely adored this book! Such a sweet storyline. Perfect for children and adults! Has definitely made me think of pigeons differently. 🐦
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“Just the year before she had survived a bad blizzard: two nights and three days trapped inside the dovecote with only half a soggy sesame bagel and barely enough old clumps of newspaper packed around her to save her from turning into an icicle.” 0 likes
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