Julie’s thoughts: Sometimes the shortest books leave an impact far larger than they should. Kelly Barnhill has ripped me to shreds before, so I thought I knew what I was in for when I picked up this gorgeous little book. I was deliciously, heart-rendingly wrong. This is a brilliant, creepy rendition of a classic tale- filled with real-life horror along with subversive magical realism.
A fifteen-year-old teenager is the backbone of her small Midwestern family, budgeting the household finances and raising her younger brother while her mom, a talented artist, weaves beautiful tapestries. For six years, it’s been just the three of them—her mom has brought home guests at times, but none have ever stayed.
Yet when her mom brings home a six-foot tall crane with a menacing air, the girl is powerless to prevent her mom letting the intruder into her heart, and her children’s lives. Utterly enchanted and numb to his sharp edges, her mom abandons the world around her to weave the masterpiece the crane demands.
In this stunning contemporary retelling of “The Crane Wife” by the Newbery Medal-winning author of The Girl Who Drank the Moon, one fiercely pragmatic teen forced to grow up faster than was fair will do whatever it takes to protect her family—and change the story.