I received this book for free from the Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Other Birds by Sarah Addison Allen
Published by St. Martin's Press on August 30, 2022
Genres: Fiction / Magical Realism
Amazon | Audible | B&N | Kobo
From the acclaimed author of Garden Spells comes an enchanting tale of lost souls, lonely strangers, secrets that shape us, and how the right flock can guide you home.
Down a narrow alley in the small coastal town of Mallow Island, South Carolina, lies a stunning cobblestone building comprised of five apartments. It’s called The Dellawisp and it is named after the tiny turquoise birds who, alongside its human tenants, inhabit an air of magical secrecy.
When Zoey Hennessey comes to claim her deceased mother’s apartment at The Dellawisp, she meets her quirky, enigmatic neighbors including a girl on the run, a grieving chef whose comfort food does not comfort him, two estranged middle-aged sisters, and three ghosts. Each with their own story. Each with their own longings. Each whose ending isn’t yet written.
When one of her new neighbors dies under odd circumstances the night Zoey arrives, she is thrust into the mystery of The Dellawisp, which involves missing pages from a legendary writer whose work might be hidden there. She soon discovers that many unfinished stories permeate the place, and the people around her are in as much need of healing from wrongs of the past as she is. To find their way they have to learn how to trust each other, confront their deepest fears, and let go of what haunts them.
Delightful and atmospheric, Other Birds is filled with magical realism and moments of pure love that won’t let you go. Sarah Addison Allen shows us that between the real and the imaginary, there are stories that take flight in the most extraordinary ways.
This book was excellent! I have read a couple of Sarah Addison Allen’s books before picking this one up so I had a good feeling that this would be a book I would enjoy. I just love the way that she weaves just a hint of magic into her stories and I really believe that she is one of the best when it comes to magical realism. It didn’t take long for me to fall for the characters in this story and I soon found this book very hard to set aside.
After graduating from high school, Zoey decides to move into her mother’s old studio condo at the Dellawisp. Another resident has recently died, leaving a condo full of paper and other items. Zoey takes on the task of clearing out the unit and is soon joined by another neighbor, Charlotte. Zoey and Charlotte work on cleaning together and eventually get to know the chef that lives in the building, Mac. I love the bonds that this group of characters formed over the course of the story. Zoey seemed to be the catalyst that was able to bring everyone together, even Oliver, who says he wants nothing to do with his mother’s things. Every character in the book had an interesting history and I really enjoyed the way those stories were worked into the story.
I really wanted to see everything work out for this group of characters. Each of them deserved to have good things in their lives. I loved that the most important thing that they gained over the course of the story was their relationships with each other. All of the characters were able to find some closure from the things from their past that has been haunting them. There is just a bit of magic sprinkled throughout the novel which kept things very interesting.
I would recommend this book to others. I thought that this was a delightful story featuring a fantastic cast of characters that I could help but root for. There were a few twists in the story that I found rather surprising as well. I definitely need to read more of this talented author’s work in the future.
I received a digital review copy of this book from St. Martin’s Press.