This is the Bird

Illustrated by David Soman.
Houghton Mifflin, 1997.

“As a handmade wooden bird is passed down through several generations, each female relative endows it with a memory that adds to the family history…Soman’s sensitive illustrations reflect the intimacy created by the memory of ancestral struggles and accomplishments; this is a moving tribute to familial bonds.” Starred review KIRKUS

“A cumulative tale connects a contemporary young girl with the women in her family stretching back eight generations. There are no heavy messages, no heroics—just quiet stories of grit and connection in tough times…The words are rhythmic, the repetition satisfying, and Soman’s expressive oil paintings of women on the prairie, leaving home, or on the high dive show courage in ordinary life. This might make children want to talk about objects that connect them with their family history.” BOOKLIST