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 is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, 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.
"A stunning debut, with lyrical prose and superbly developed characters, this novel is an emotional roller coaster that effectively conveys a family's visceral tragedy....The focus on nature and the outdoors helps set the pace as the seasonal changes quietly indicate the passage of time. Sensitive readers should be aware of the tough issues that it addresses — suicide, depression, and personal loss. However, the story also offers a hopeful message." — Juliet Morefield, School Library Journal