Nosy Crow, February 2020
This pioneering adventure by British author Karen McCombie is the engaging sequel to Little Bird Flies (published by Nosy Crow in January 2019). Set in mid-nineteenth century America, 15 year-old Bridie (Little Bird) embarks on a new life in the west, leaving her beloved homeland of Scotland behind.
Inspired by pioneering classics such as the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder, Karen McCombie paints a vivid picture of a life of challenges, hardship, joy and, most importantly, hope. Bridie and her family seek to escape their troubled past and finally find a place they can call home.
Having grown up on the prairies of Canada, this book touched many of my childhood memories: history lessons I learned, books I loved, life I experienced. As I travelled with Bridie, I felt at home in her story. I was pleased to find Native American characters, issues of race and acceptance, and key moments in history treated with respect and authenticity – right down to the parallel experiences of Scottish people being pushed out of their Highland homes and Native Americans being forced to give up their land to European settlers. Bridie understands the injustices and stands up for what is right.
The character of Bridie is a wonderful contrast of seeming weak but actually being so very strong. She defies expectations, limits and doubts to overcome when others would likely falter. As a result, she becomes a fantastic heroine and role model for anyone who ever feels they can’t carry on. Her daring, spunk and unstoppable determination demonstrate that life is not always easy but there is incredible value in the challenges and struggles.
Through each adventure, Little Bird finds freedom and the ability to not just fly, but to soar.
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