Sidwell has a monster. Someone or something is stealing things from the townspeople. Strange graffiti is appearing around town, and the locals are getting very nervous. There's talk of the men needing to go on a monster hunt.
Sidwell also has owls. The woods around the town are the breeding ground of the rare black saw-whet owls. But there are plans for the woods to be cut down, to make way for 'progress' and 'development'.
And then the Hall family moves into town. They're Twig's neighbours but, of course, she has to keep her distance. Daughters Julia and Agate Hall have other plans, however, and soon Twig ends up with friends — a very new and rather wonderful experience for her. But the Hall family are part of an ancient curse, the same curse that Twig and her mother try to keep hidden. Who really is the Sidwell monster? And is Agate Hall's first love going to be the catalyst that brings all of Sidwell's secrets out into the open?
Alice Hoffman is a the author of over 30 books but is probably better known for her adult novels such as Practical Magic, Here on Earth, and The Museum of Extraordinary Things. She has a knack for weaving magic and the supernatural into the lives of otherwise ordinary people to create enjoyably entertaining stories. Nightbird is no exception.
Author: Alice Hoffman
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, $16.99 RRP
Publication Date: March 2015
For ages: 12+
Type: Middle Fiction