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Nightbird by Alice Hoffman

"Some things could only be found in Sidwell it seemed: pink apples, black owls, and my brother, James."

Books of Alice Hoffman never fail to put a dash of magic to an otherwise ordinary and banal day. To get lost in her world with its spellbinding story and fantasy intertwined, as denotes her books, is always something I look forward. So when Nightbird recently came out, I was pleased to grab a hold of it (and ignored my reading list by putting it first).

This is something new, for a start, from her other books I've read. It is like a children story told at bedtime. Yet, I didn't mind and find it very much enchanting. Magic and childhood always go hand in hand and I refuse to have my sinister adulthood rear its sarcastic head.

In a lot of ways, I believe there is a Twig in all of us; in her interests, awkward bearings, and insecurities. That all we needed is someone who could help us bloom, coax us out of our shell and stick with us despite the odds. I loved all the characters, magical or not, though I can't say the same for the men hunters and I would think they may represent those who does not have much imagination.

Nightbird is probably my second favorite following Practical Magic. There are unexpected moments of delicious thrill (especially that moment when James, the brother, was finally introduced) while some I predicted will happen sooner or later. Hoffman made a nice tangle of the truth and the lies, with gossip blurring the lines (as often happens) from which the premise of the book is wrought. As the story continues, together with Twig and Julia, things begin to unravel till the truth is revealed to us.

The book sends out a little inspiration; to embrace our otherness, to allow ourselves to make our own choices, to fly free with our imagination, to fight for what is true. It is such a keeper, I just can't wait to read it again.


An enchanting novel from bestselling author Alice Hoffman: a charmed New England village, a family secret, and a friendship destined to defeat a witch.

Twelve-year-old Twig's town in the Berkshires is said to hide a winged beast, the Monster of Sidwell, and the rumors draw as many tourists as the town's famed pink apple orchards. Twig lives in the orchard with her mysterious brother James and her reclusive mother, a baker of irresistible apple pies. Because of a family secret, an ancient curse,Twig has had to isolate herself from other kids. Then a family with two girls, Julia and Agate, moves into the cottage next door. They are descendants of the witch who put the spell on Twig's family. But Julia turns out to be Twig's first true friend, and her ally in trying to undo the curse and smooth the path to true love for Agate and James.

Title: Nightbird
Author: Alice Hoffman
Genre: Children, Young Adult, Magical Realism
Published: March 2015
Publisher: Wendy Lamb Books
Rating: ♨♨♨♨♨ (5 cups - Enchanting and thrilling for young adults yet will also appeal for the grown-ups who are young at heart.)


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