By Crystal Chan
(Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Hardcover, 9781442450899, 295pp.)
Publication Date: January 2014
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"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 and impenetrable silence.
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--just maybe--the time has come to break through the stagnant silence of the past.
Crystal Chan grew up as a mixed-race kid in the middle of the Wisconsin cornfields and has been trying to find her place in the world ever since. She has published articles in several magazines; given talks and workshops across the country; facilitated discussion groups at national conferences; and been a professional storyteller for children and adults alike. In Chicago, where Crystal now lives, you will find her biking along the city streets and talking to her pet turtle. Bird is her first novel.