Get lost in a sweeping middle-grade adventure following Rype, an abandoned girl in fourteenth-century Europe, as she walks from Norway to England looking for safety from the plague.
Her name was Rype. That wasn’t really her name. It was what the strangers called her. She didn’t remember her real name. She didn’t remember anything at all.
Rype was hiding in the hollow of a tree trunk when they found her. She was hungry, small, cold, alone. She did not speak their language, or understand their mannerisms. But she knew this: To survive, she would have to go with them.
In fourteenth-century Norway, the plague has destroyed the entire village of Skeviga. To stay alive, Rype, the only one left, must embark on a sweeping adventure across Europe with the son of an English ship captain and a band of troubadours in search of a brighter future and a new home.
Expertly crafted, beautifully written, and completely unique, Diane Zahler has created a historically rich, stunning story of survival and hope in the face of tragedy.
Praise for Wild Bird
*A Junior Library Guild Selection*
"Something special. Don’t miss it." - Karen Cushman, Newbery Medal-winning author of The Midwife's Apprentice and Newbery Honor-winning Catherine, Called Birdy
"A quick-paced treasure." - Donna Jo Napoli, author of In a Flash
"A deeply moving tribute to the power of art and memory." - Laurel Snyder, author of My Jasper June and National Book Award longlist Orphan Island
Diane Zahler grew up reading children's books and never wanted to do anything but write them. She worked in the children’s room of her public library and in a children’s book publishing company, and now she’s the author of several middle-grade novels (including The Thirteenth Pricess and Daughter of the White Rose) and nonfiction books for older readers. She lives in the Hudson Valley with her husband and slightly neurotic dog in what is aptly nicknamed the Bug House.
*A Junior Library Guild Selection*
"Exciting, touching, and compelling, Wild Bird celebrates the important things in life: courage, persistence, friendship, and love. It’s something special. Don’t miss it." - Karen Cushman, Newbery Medal-winning author of The Midwife's Apprentice and Newbery Honor-winning Catherine, Called Birdy
"Survival against the odds. Ruffians and royalty. Pious folk and knaves. The Sickness of Europe in the 1300s rings relevant to today’s readers, as we travel with an orphaned girl through so many losses, and witness her transform them to comfort, joy, even laughter through the truth of song. A quick-paced treasure." - Donna Jo Napoli, author of In a Flash
"Wild Bird is a portrait of the past, with so much to teach us about ourselves and our own difficult moment in history. Riddled with heartache, but full of vibrant life, Rype’s journey will stun you. I came away from this powerful book with tears in my eyes and a little more hope for the future. A deeply moving tribute to the power of art and memory." - Laurel Snyder, author of My Jasper June and National Book Award longlist Orphan Island
★ "Zahler transports readers to 14th-century Europe during the height of the black plague in this searing novel for fans of gritty historical fare." - Publishers Weekly, starred review
★ "A great addition to any middle grade historical fiction collection." - School Library Journal, starred review
"A worthwhile journey for readers who love historical fiction." - Kirkus Reviews
"Nuanced and observant." - The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Reminiscent of Marguerite de Angeli’s Newbery-winning The Door in the Wall." - Horn Book Magazine
"This story offers much that will intrigue contemporary readers...revealing and heartwarming." - Booklist