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Children's Fiction Adolescence

Because of that Crow

by (author) Beverley Brenna

Red Deer Press
Initial publish date
May 2020
Adolescence, Death, Grief, Bereavement
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    May 2020
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 10 to 12
  • Grade: 5 to 7


A new middle grade novel from the author of the Michael L Printz Honor Book, The White Bicycle
Harris Olson is a boy dealing with a load of guilt. Three years ago he was in a tragic car accident with his parents. He can't shake off the feeling of being responsible, though of course he was not. The memory returns from time to time —— until a crow comes tapping at his window one morning. A crow whom he lets into the house without intending to, a crow who somehow manages to cheer up not only Harris, but a lot of other people he cares about.
In this moving story, Beverley Brenna expertly demonstrates that sadness isn't something that needs to stay with you, that positive experiences can repair the tough things that occur in life. When Harris opens his window for the crow, he also opens himself up to a gradual healing and in the process learns how others also can overcome the dark feelings that often drag them down.

About the author

Beverley Brenna is known for her warm, funny family stories that capture the essence of childhood and champion diversity. Her awards include an international Dolly Gray Award, a Printz Honor Book Award, and a shortlisting for the 2013 Governor General’s Award. Wild Orchid, the title book in a trilogy about a young woman on the Autism Spectrum, is currently listed on CBC’s “100 Young Adult Books That Make You Proud To Be Canadian”. Bev is a professor in Curriculum Studies at the College of Education, University of Saskatchewan, where she teaches English Language Arts subject matter to preservice and inservice teachers. Much of Bev’s writing seeks to fill in gaps in the field of available books, and she considers voices rarely heard in children’s literature. Bev’s many years as a classroom and special education teacher offer her a clear picture of school landscapes, children, and childhood, and the years she spent at home co-parenting three sons continue to inspire new characters and themes.

Beverley Brenna's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"Author Beverley Brenna has written a rich, complex story that will help youngsters discover important things about themselves and those around them. The writing is beautiful, the story compelling, and the characters fully developed and engaging. It's short, sweet, and a real winner."
Manhattan Book Review

"There are lots of thought-provoking issues addressed in Because of That Crow: grief, bird biology, family relationships, guilt, death, science projects, research, dementia, animal care, responsibility, memory, empathy, and the afterlife. At the end of the book in the "Interview with Bev Brenna", the writer addresses the fundamental message of this novel, "I think kids need to know that sadness is part of the human experience. Through the complicated lives of characters we read about, we can all learn vicariously about resilience and hope."
Highly Recommended"
CM Magazine 5 Stars out of 5

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