(Disclaimer: I previously posted this review on another blog for which I no longer write. This is why the formatting is a little different from my more recent reviews. However, I loved this book so much, I wanted to share my thoughts here. From Sept 5, 2014…)
Author: Esther Ehrlich
Publisher: Random House Children’s Books
Genre: Middle school fiction
Setting: Cape Cod in 1972
Where did you get it? This is an ARC from Netgalley that I received in exchange for my honest review.
Why did you read it? If I remember correctly, I was invited to read this book. That being said, I read it because I liked the sound of the book from the blurb. I also thought the cover was pretty.
From the publisher: For fans of Jennifer Holm (Penny from Heaven, Turtle in Paradise), a heartfelt and unforgettable middle-grade novel about an irresistible girl and her family, tragic change, and the healing power of love and friendship. In 1972 home is a cozy nest on Cape Cod for eleven-year-old Naomi “Chirp” Orenstein, her older sister, Rachel; her psychiatrist father; and her dancer mother. But then Chirp’s mom develops symptoms of a serious disease, and everything changes.
Chirp finds comfort in watching her beloved wild birds. She also finds a true friend in Joey, the mysterious boy who lives across the street. Together they create their own private world and come up with the perfect plan: Escape. Adventure. Discovery.
Nest is Esther Ehrlich’s stunning debut novel. Her lyrical writing is honest, humorous, and deeply affecting. Chirp and Joey will steal your heart. Long after you finish Nest, the spirit of Chirp and her loving family will stay with you.
What did you think? I loved this book. I had reservations about reading a book intended for such a young audience, but Esther Ehrlich doesn’t “write down” to her readers. I thoroughly enjoyed every page of Nest. This books was full of “feels” and normally, I’m not into that. While Chirp and her family deals with illness, which is a serious subject, you aren’t left with a heavy feeling after reading Nest. Quite the opposite.
I absolutely fell in love with all of the characters in this book, even the sometimes annoying psychiatrist dad. This family is so real because they are a family in the very real sense of the word but they aren’t perfect either. Ehrlich’s writing is so spot on that you identify with their angst, but it’s their perfection that makes you completely feel their losses.
For a debut novel, well, you can’t even tell this is a debut novel. It’s really amazing and I am so a fan of Esther Ehrlich. I can’t wait to see what she publishes in the future. I am also totally buying a copy of this book when it comes out so that my kids can read it.