Sometimes the search for identity depends upon a willingness to change.
Pablo already feels change coming as he approaches his tenth not-birthday--the tenth anniversary of his washing to shore as a baby in an improvised raft, watched over by an unusual parrot. His adopted father and the community of adults that stand in as his family aren't changing, he is. He hasn't told anyone yet except Birdy, who never leaves his side, but Pablo is no longer satisfied with the way things have always been. He wants to know more about who he is and where he comes from. That dissatisfaction will lead him in directions he never expected.
McGhee's invented island community and story feature birds prominently. They are pivotal characters, sources of humor, and part of the book's slight magical realism. So too with the faintly cartoonish human characters. This is a more introspective tale than many, quietly--though satisfyingly--enchanting and fun.
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