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When We Were Birds



by
Ayanna Banwo

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Penguin Random House
Imprint
Doubleday (Adult)
ISBN
9780385547260
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Strong Language , Crime: General , Violence: Mild Violence , Sexual Content: Strong Sexual Content/Themes , Drugs/Alcohol/Tobacco: Marijuana Use , Drugs/Alcohol/Tobacco: Reference or Discussion
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A mythic love story set in Trinidad, Ayanna Lloyd Banwo’s radiant debut introduces two unforgettable outsiders brought together by their connection with the dead.

“Heartwarming and heartbreaking, fantastical and familiar, with characters that burrow their way into your heart and mind… [When We Were Birds] is glorious.”—ROBERT JONES JR., New York Times bestselling author of THE PROPHETS.

In the old house on a hill, where the city meets the rainforest, Yejide’s mother is dying. She is leaving behind a legacy that now passes to Yejide: one St Bernard woman in every generation has the power to shepherd the city’s souls into the afterlife. But after years of suffering her mother’s neglect and bitterness, Yejide is looking for a way out.

Raised in the countryside by a devout Rastafarian mother, Darwin has always abided by the religious commandment not to interact with death. He has never been to a funeral, much less seen a dead body. But when the only job he can find is grave digging, he must betray the life his mother built for him in order to provide for them both. Newly shorn of his dreadlocks and his past, and determined to prove himself, Darwin finds himself adrift in a city electric with possibility and danger.

Yejide and Darwin will meet inside the gates of Fidelis, an ancient and sprawling cemetery, where the dead lie uneasy in their graves and a reckoning with fate beckons them both. A masterwork of lush imagination and exuberant storytelling, When We Were Birds is a spellbinding and hopeful novel about inheritance, loss, and love’s seismic power to heal.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Strong Language , Crime: General , Violence: Mild Violence , Sexual Content: Strong Sexual Content/Themes , Drugs/Alcohol/Tobacco: Marijuana Use , Drugs/Alcohol/Tobacco: Reference or Discussion

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

304

Trim Size

8 3/10" x 5 1/2"

Dewey

F

AR

0: points 0

Genre

Fic

Scholastic Reading Counts

0

JLG Release

Jun 2022

Book Genres

Magical Realism

Topics

Trinidad and Tobago. Families. Love stories. Rastafarianism. Speaking with the dead. Cemeteries. Gravedigging. Cultural heritage. 

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Grades 11 & Up
Adult Crossover High Plus
For Grades 11 & Up
For the more advanced high school reader who is ready for adult reading, our ACH Category is a great choice. With more sophisticated and challenging themes, the 12 books in ACH open up new worlds for teen readers.
Take note: These selections often contain mature situations and language that could be considered controversial.

14 books per Year
$309.26 per Year
Interests
Fiction,Mature Readers,Novels,Realistic Fiction
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Grades 11 & Up
Adult Crossover High Plus
14 books per Year
$309.26 per Year

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