Be Light Like a Bird by Monika Schröder – Book Review
Be Light Like a Bird by Monika Schröder – Book Reviewed by Stacey
Publisher – Capstone Press
Pages – 240
Release Date – 28th November 2016
ISBN-13 – 978-1623707491
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review
After the death of her father, twelve-year-old Wren finds her life thrown into upheaval. And when her mother decides to pack up the car and forces Wren to leave the only home she’s ever known, the family grows even more fractured.
As she and her mother struggle to build a new life, Wren must confront issues with the environment, peer pressure, bullying, and most of all, the difficulty of forgiving those who don’t deserve it.
A quirky, emotional middle grade novel set in Michigan s Upper Peninsula, Be Light Like a Bird features well-drawn, unconventional characters and explores what it means to be a family and the secrets and lies that can tear one apart.”
When I was approached by the author about this book, I took a little while to decide whether I wanted to read it or not. I was very intrigued, and was drawn to it, but not sure how I would cope with the plot as my own father has recently passed away.
But Monika’s writing style has an ease to it. She make’s you feel comfortable whilst reading about a difficult subject, and although it has quite a few emotional scenes, I was surprised that I was never brought to tears.
Be Light Like A Bird, is a Children’s/YA book, that deals with some hard hitting issues. It follows the life of twelve year old Wren, and her ever increasingly distant mum, after the death of her father, in a plane crash.
When her mum throws all of her fathers belongings out, packs up the family car and moves them away from the only home that Wren has ever known, Wren is devastated, and hates her mum. Especially after she makes them move three times in a short space of time.
For such a young girl, Wren feels like she has the weight of the world on her shoulders, and the one person who should be there to comfort her, and tell her everything is going to be alright, is the one person making her life more miserable. Not only has her mum stopped having a relationship with her, but she won’t even allow Wren to mention her father’s name. Wren eventually see’s red when her mum gets rid of the only possession that she had left of her father, his beloved Volvo.
When they finally seem to settle in a town called Pyramid, Wren gets to attend the local school. Unfortunately, she is teamed up with the ‘Geek’ of the class on a school project. Over time with the ‘Geek’, Theo’s help, Wren starts to enjoy life again, especially when they start campaigning to stop the local pond being turned into a refuse site.
When her mum lets her into a secret she has been hiding, Wren accuses her of lying, but deep down she knows that her mum is telling the truth, she just doesn’t want to believe it. To me though, the secret that her mum had been keeping from her daughter didn’t justify the way that she treated her. I also feel that she should never of told her, as it only added to the hurt that Wren was already feeling.
One of the many things that I like about the book, apart from the interesting and unique storyline, was that Monika has kept the chapters really short, something that I feel gives this an added interest to children and YA readers. Her writing style has a natural flow to it and reminded me of Kate Dicamillo’s books.
This is a must read. It’s engaging, emotional, fun, interesting, and gripping. It has realistic characters that you can connect with. Most importantly it certainly won’t leave you disappointed.
Book reviewed by Stacey
I grew up in Germany and have worked as an elementary school teacher and librarian in American international schools in Egypt, Chile, Oman and India. After living in India for eight years my husband and I returned to the US in the summer of 2011. We now live in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina.
I like to travel to new places and to learn about different cultures. Of course, I read a lot of children’s books, but I also make time for adult literature, mostly historical fiction. If I’m not reading or writing, I love to bake, hike or watch movies. Since we moved to North Carolina, I also have become interested in gardening.
When we lived in India, my husband and I adopted an Indian street dog. We called him Frank.