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Pablo and Birdy
by Alison McGhee and Ana Juan




Overview -
A boy who drifted into the seaside town of Isla as a baby searches for answers about where he and his parrot came from in this charmer of a tale laced with magical realism from New York Times bestselling author Alison McGhee.

The seaside town of Isla has many stories, the most notable being the legend of the Seafaring Parrot. Locals claim that the Seafarer remembers every sound, every whisper, cry, laugh, or snort ever uttered. But, though there have been rumored Seafarer sightings, no one has actually seen the bird before. Other stories surround a boy named Pablo, who had washed up on shore in a blow-up swimming pool as an infant with only a lavender parrot as a companion. Now, on the eve of his tenth birthday, the stories are repeated.

"At first I thought it was a huge fish," Emmanuel, the man who found and took Pablo in, says. Pierre, the baker's guess was a good one: Perhaps Pablo has come from an undiscovered country, one unknown to the rest of the world. Maybe the inhabitants there lived in tree houses, or underground. Or maybe he's a pirate baby. But Pablo wants the truth, and the only one who might know it is Birdy, his parrot. After all, she was there, holding onto the raft. But unlike most birds who live in Isla, Birdy can neither talk or fly. Or, at least, she never has. Until...one day, when strong winds begin to blow--winds similar to the ones that brought Pablo to shore--Birdy begins to mutter. Could Birdy be a Seafaring parrot? If she is, then she will be able to tell Pablo the true story of where he came from--of who tied him so lovingly and safely to that raft? But, if she is, that also means the second part of the Seafarer myth is true...that Seafaring Parrots will, eventually, fly away.

As Pablo is buzzing with questions, hopes, and fears, an old saying echoes in his mind: winds of change mean fortune lost or fortune gained. And while the winds rise in Isla, Pablo holds tight to Birdy. Would losing his companion, his dearest link to his past, be that loss?

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More About Pablo and Birdy by Alison McGhee; Ana Juan

 
 
 

Overview

A boy who drifted into the seaside town of Isla as a baby searches for answers about where he and his parrot came from in this charmer of a tale laced with magical realism from New York Times bestselling author Alison McGhee.

The seaside town of Isla has many stories, the most notable being the legend of the Seafaring Parrot. Locals claim that the Seafarer remembers every sound, every whisper, cry, laugh, or snort ever uttered. But, though there have been rumored Seafarer sightings, no one has actually seen the bird before. Other stories surround a boy named Pablo, who had washed up on shore in a blow-up swimming pool as an infant with only a lavender parrot as a companion. Now, on the eve of his tenth birthday, the stories are repeated.

"At first I thought it was a huge fish," Emmanuel, the man who found and took Pablo in, says. Pierre, the baker's guess was a good one: Perhaps Pablo has come from an undiscovered country, one unknown to the rest of the world. Maybe the inhabitants there lived in tree houses, or underground. Or maybe he's a pirate baby. But Pablo wants the truth, and the only one who might know it is Birdy, his parrot. After all, she was there, holding onto the raft. But unlike most birds who live in Isla, Birdy can neither talk or fly. Or, at least, she never has. Until...one day, when strong winds begin to blow--winds similar to the ones that brought Pablo to shore--Birdy begins to mutter. Could Birdy be a Seafaring parrot? If she is, then she will be able to tell Pablo the true story of where he came from--of who tied him so lovingly and safely to that raft? But, if she is, that also means the second part of the Seafarer myth is true...that Seafaring Parrots will, eventually, fly away.

As Pablo is buzzing with questions, hopes, and fears, an old saying echoes in his mind: winds of change mean fortune lost or fortune gained. And while the winds rise in Isla, Pablo holds tight to Birdy. Would losing his companion, his dearest link to his past, be that loss?


This item is Non-Returnable.

 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781481470261
  • ISBN-10: 1481470264
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books
  • Publish Date: August 2017
  • Page Count: 304
  • Reading Level: Ages 8-12
  • Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.3 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.9 pounds


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BookPage Reviews

Growing up and letting go

Set in the idyllic seaside tourist town of Isla, a place famed for its talking birds, Pablo and Birdy is a mystical, fable-like novel that gently examines big questions of identity, family, refugees and freedom.

As a baby, Pablo was set adrift at sea in a child’s inflatable swimming pool with a parrot named Birdy. After Pablo washed ashore, a souvenir shop owner named Emmanuel took him in, helped by other shopkeepers who had emigrated from places like Cuba, Haiti and Ireland.

Now, on the eve of his 10th birthday, it’s no wonder that Pablo is haunted by questions about his past. Just as Pablo is coming to terms with his mysterious origins, he faces a turning point with his beloved Birdy, long presumed to be flightless and voiceless. Helped by a comic “Committee” of talking birds, Pablo begins to realize that his guardian parrot may be an elusive Seafarer, who according to legend can hear and reproduce every sound ever made.

Pablo hopes that Birdy’s special powers may help reveal his origin story. At the same time, however, he worries that he will be forced to set Birdy free, to return to the ocean on the rare “Winds of Change” that are quickly approaching Isla. As news reporters race to capture a legendary Seafarer, possibly endangering Birdy’s life, Pablo is faced with a gut-wrenching decision.

Pablo and Birdy provides an engaging introduction to an all-important issue: As Emmanuel explains, there are many “in this world who had to leave their homes, for various reasons, and their journeys are long and hard.”

 

This article was originally published in the September 2017 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 

BAM Customer Reviews