Book - 2014
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Entrenched secrets, mysterious spirits, and an astonishing friendship weave together in this extraordinary and haunting debut.

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.
Publisher: New York : Atheneum Books for Young Readers, c2014.
ISBN: 9781442450899
Branch Call Number: J CHA
Characteristics: 295 p. ; 22 cm.


From Library Staff

Secrets begin to break the silence that has encased Jewel's house since the death of her brother.

From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Sep 19, 2016

Good book with lots of plot twists and a very exciting story.


This book is very sad. The main character, named Jewel has a brother (John) that died because he thought he could fly and a grandfather who never speaks because he felt responsible for John's death. It is a wonderful book, with all of Jewel struggles to feel loved by her parents and making a friend.

green_turtle_1186 Jun 08, 2014

this book is for people who believe in God and superstitions. Jewel tells her story of a Grandpa she never sees, a brother who jumped off a cliff, a stubborn mom, and many more. definitely a book with surprise and mystery. a must read

May 02, 2014

Ok. I recommend you skip this book from page 15 to page 169 to avoid frustration with the story dragging. When you skip: the story comes alive, action goes hard and you honestly don't lose much detail. This story is full of heart and hope despite the theme of death. Young girl stuggles to understand her family who still hurts from the accidental death of her brother. I intially wanted to read this for the biracial girl, but this story quickly drops that information and gets the heart of the story: family and acceptance. It still has culture in the background, but its very low key. (which I personally liked). I don't know if this is too "heavy" a book for readers, but I did throughally enjoy it. It was beautiful to see her relationship with her grandfather unfold. As he grieves, she learns to hear his unspoken words. She forms a friendship with a young boy who also feels like an outcast in his own home. Jewel also learns how to speak up for herself and how its okay to want love. I think kids would relate to feeling ignored by their parents. At the end of the day, thought provoking. And yes, if you're wondering keep a tissue box handy: its a tear jerker

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability
Sep 19, 2016

edbodnar thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over


Add a Summary
Sep 19, 2016

Jewel is sick of living in her late brother's shadow. Her house is filled with shadows and silence, and her only escape is to the cliff where her brother died. Then one night, Jewel meets a strange boy in a tree, and maybe he can add some happiness to Jewel's otherwise dull life...


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at CPL

To Top