Blackbird Fly

Blackbird FlyWritten by Erin Entrada Kelly

This is a so true-to-life tale of bullies, back-stabbers, old and new friendships, being embarrassed by your parents, realization of talents, and making good and bad choices on your path to self-discovery. Apple and her mother moved to Louisiana from the Philippines after the death of her father. The one item Apple brought with her was a cassette tape of Beatles songs with her dad’s name on it. Apple loves the Beatles and aspires to play the guitar like her idol, George. Her dream may never be realized however, because her mother wants Apple to concentrate on school academics. While Apple feels out of place at school (she is even on the Dog Log) she finds who her true friends are and learns more about herself and her family than she dreamed possible.

I am hoping this book finds a place in the Newbery awards. It tugged at my heart and actually brought tears to my eyes. I really felt like I was back in jr. high, reliving all those mostly painful experiences. I was cheering for a happy ending for Apple and come-uppance for her tormentors. I didn’t like the cover artwork, but otherwise found this book completely rewarding.

Review by Terrie Bishop, Academy Park Elementary Media Center
Rating: ★★★★★ (5 stars)
Interest Level: Grades 4-9

Author Website:

Blackbird Fly
Written by Erin Entrada Kelly
Greenwillow Books
296 pages
Release Date: March 24, 2015

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3 thoughts on “Blackbird Fly”

  1. Thanks for your review. I’m really excited to read this one now.

    Also, the Beatles cassette tape thing reminds me of Guardians of the Galaxy, but more realistic. I guess she just goes to the other side of the world rather than the other side of the galaxy?

  2. Thanks Terrie, your review made me put this on hold at the public library. I have to read this book. Also, growing up in the era of the Beatles is another plus for me.

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