Other Birds

By Calasandra Spray, Adult Services

“There are birds, and then there are other birds. Maybe they don’t sing. Maybe they don’t fly. Maybe they don’t fit in. I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather be an other bird than just the same old thing.”

At some time in our lives we have all felt like an outsider. For some of us, that feeling of being an outsider is a moment in time or a brief series of moments that do not last. For others, that feeling is perpetual and becomes a safety blanket we clasp to our chests in order to feel secure. This is the case for the residents of The Dellawisp Condos, a small five condo complex tucked in the heart of Mallow Island off the coast of South Carolina.

When Zoey moves into her deceased mother’s condo at The Dellawisp she discovers a motley bunch of eccentrics buried in the ghosts of their pasts. Her new neighbors include hoarder Elizabeth Lime (along with her son Oliver and her reclusive sister Lucy Lime), struggling artist Charlotte Lungren, award-winning chef Mac Garett, and condo owner Frasier—and their ghosts.

The way that love (or its lack) impacts and shapes us as humans is the central theme. These quirky characters face adversity and struggle to survive the overbearing chains of material and emotional poverty. They cling like children to the little pieces of love that have been doled out to them, clutching reminiscence of love so close that there is no room for new love.

Author Sarah Addison Allen blurs the lines of fantasy and reality as The Dellawisp residents learn to unburden themselves with each other’s help and the guidance of the overbearing, bossy birds whose habitat is preserved in the courtyard of the condos. As each person releases their grip on the past, they are able to embrace the future and learn to live rather than simply being alive.

This novel unfolds slowly and delicately, making the reader patiently wait for the characters to feel comfortable enough to tell their stories. It truly makes one feel as if they are a part of this found family. Borrow or place your hold for “Other Birds.”

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