Summer Bird Blue

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“A lyrical novel about grief, love, and finding oneself in the wake of a tragic loss.” —Bustle

“Grabs your heart and won’t let go.” —Book Riot

Three starred reviews for this stunning novel about a mixed race teen who struggles to find her way back to her love of music in the wake of her sister’s death, from the author of the William C. Morris Award finalist Starfish.

Rumi Seto spends a lot of time worrying she doesn’t have the answers to everything. What to eat, where to go, whom to love. But there is one thing she is absolutely sure of—she wants to spend the rest of her life writing music with her younger sister, Lea.

Then Lea dies in a car accident, and her mother sends her away to live with her aunt in Hawaii while she deals with her own grief. Now thousands of miles from home, Rumi struggles to navigate the loss of her sister, being abandoned by her mother, and the absence of music in her life. With the help of the “boys next door”—a teenage surfer named Kai, who smiles too much and doesn’t take anything seriously, and an eighty-year-old named George Watanabe, who succumbed to his own grief years ago—Rumi attempts to find her way back to her music, to write the song she and Lea never had the chance to finish.

Aching, powerful, and unflinchingly honest, Summer Bird Blue explores big truths about insurmountable grief, unconditional love, and how to forgive even when it feels impossible.
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About the author

Akemi Dawn Bowman is the author of Starfish and Summer Bird Blue. She is also a Ravenclaw and Star Wars enthusiast, who served in the US Navy for five years and has a BA in social sciences from UNLV. Originally from Las Vegas, she currently lives in Scotland with her husband, two children, and their Pekingese mix.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Sep 11, 2018
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Pages
384
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ISBN
9781481487771
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Language
English
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Genres
Young Adult Fiction / Diversity & Multicultural
Young Adult Fiction / Family / Siblings
Young Adult Fiction / Social Themes / Death & Dying
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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A William C. Morris Award Finalist
A New York Public Library Best Book for Teens of 2017
A Junior Library Guild Selection

“An empowering novel that will speak to many mixed-race teens.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Dazzling.” —Bustle
“One of the most compelling reads of the year.” —Paste Magazine
“This book is a gem.” —BookRiot

A half-Japanese teen grapples with social anxiety and her narcissist mother in the wake of a crushing rejection from art school in this “stunningly beautiful, highly nuanced debut” (Booklist, starred review).

Kiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking. With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half-Japanese heritage she doesn’t quite understand, Kiko prefers to keep her head down, certain that once she makes it into her dream art school, Prism, her real life will begin.

But then Kiko doesn’t get into Prism, at the same time her abusive uncle moves back in with her family. So when she receives an invitation from her childhood friend to leave her small town and tour art schools on the west coast, Kiko jumps at the opportunity in spite of the anxieties and fears that attempt to hold her back. And now that she is finally free to be her own person outside the constricting walls of her home life, Kiko learns life-changing truths about herself, her past, and how to be brave.

From debut author Akemi Dawn Bowman comes a luminous, heartbreaking story of identity, family, and the beauty that emerges when we embrace our true selves.
A William C. Morris Award Finalist
A New York Public Library Best Book for Teens of 2017
A Junior Library Guild Selection

“An empowering novel that will speak to many mixed-race teens.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Dazzling.” —Bustle
“One of the most compelling reads of the year.” —Paste Magazine
“This book is a gem.” —BookRiot

A half-Japanese teen grapples with social anxiety and her narcissist mother in the wake of a crushing rejection from art school in this “stunningly beautiful, highly nuanced debut” (Booklist, starred review).

Kiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking. With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half-Japanese heritage she doesn’t quite understand, Kiko prefers to keep her head down, certain that once she makes it into her dream art school, Prism, her real life will begin.

But then Kiko doesn’t get into Prism, at the same time her abusive uncle moves back in with her family. So when she receives an invitation from her childhood friend to leave her small town and tour art schools on the west coast, Kiko jumps at the opportunity in spite of the anxieties and fears that attempt to hold her back. And now that she is finally free to be her own person outside the constricting walls of her home life, Kiko learns life-changing truths about herself, her past, and how to be brave.

From debut author Akemi Dawn Bowman comes a luminous, heartbreaking story of identity, family, and the beauty that emerges when we embrace our true selves.
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