"A beautiful as well as a moving book to read"
Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8
Winner of this year’s Yoto Carnegie Medal, Katya Balen is a lyrical story teller who is gifted at reflecting on difficult situations and emotions and exploring how children can navigate them.
In Birdsong, Annie is slowly recovering from a terrible car crash which has left her with damage to her hand that prevents her from playing her beloved flute. Without access to her natural solace of making music Annie retreats into a silent and all-consuming rage against everything that has caused this to happen, including her mother. Furiously exploring the scruffy scrubland outside her new flat Annie meets Noah who introduces her to the blackbirds’ nest he is protecting.
Gradually Annie begins to take an interest and the blackbirds’ wonderful song reignites her love of music and enables her to express herself through it once more. Katya Balen’s careful and sparing use of words and her eloquent expressions makes this a beautiful as well as a moving book to read.