Nightingale's Nest

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A viral Nightingale s Nest Author Nikki Loftin is Kindle Nikki Loftin is the author of The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy which Publishers Weekly called mesmerizing and

A viral Nightingale's Nest Author Nikki Loftin is Kindle Nikki Loftin is the author of The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy, which Publishers Weekly called mesmerizing, and Kirkus called irresistible, and Nightingale s Nest, which received a starred review from Kirkus She lives with her Scottish photographer husband just outside Austin, Texas, surrounded by dogs, goats, and small, loud boys Nikki is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin graduate writing program MA, 98 She has been a popcorn seller, waitress, bookstore employee, Music and Gifted Talented teacher, and a Director of Family Ministries.Nikki teaches Zumba dance aerobics in a mostly vain attempt to combat the ever threatening Writer s Butt When under extreme stress, or on submission with a novel, she bakes obsessively as a coping technique Her favorite food obsession is ice cream, preferably Blue Bell Moo llenium Crunch On very good days, she prefers writing even to ice cream.Nikki is represented by Suzie Townsend of New Leaf Literary Agency.. A powerful novel about friendship and family that calls to mind Bridge to Terabithia Twelve year old John Fischer Jr or Little John as he s always been known, is spending his summer helping his father with his tree removal business, clearing brush for Mr King, the wealthy owner of a chain of Texas dollar stores, when he hears a beautiful song that transfixes him He fA powerful novel about friendship and family that calls to mind Bridge to Terabithia Twelve year old John Fischer Jr or Little John as he s always been known, is spending his summer helping his father with his tree removal business, clearing brush for Mr King, the wealthy owner of a chain of Texas dollar stores, when he hears a beautiful song that transfixes him He follows the melody and finds, not a bird, but a young girl sitting in the branches of a tall syca tree There s something magical about this girl, Gayle, especially her soaring singing voice, and Little John s friendship with Gayle quickly becomes the one bright spot in his life, for his home is dominated by sorrow over his sister s death and his parents ever tightening financial difficulties But then Mr King draws Little John into an impossible choice forced to choose between his family s survival and a betrayal of Gayle that puts her future in jeopardy Inspired by a Hans Christian Andersen story, Nightingale s Nest is an unforgettable novel about a boy with the weight of the world on his shoulders and a girl with the gift of healing in her voice.. A viral Ebook Nightingale's Nest Magical realism in children’s novels is a rarity. It’s not unheard of, but when children’s authors want fantasy, they write fantasy. When they want reality, they write reality. A potentially uncomfortable mix of the two is harder to pull off. Ambiguity is not unheard of in books for youth, but it’s darned hard to write. Why go through all that trouble? For that reason alone we don’t tend to see it in children’s books. Kids like concrete concepts. Good guys vs. bad guys. This is real vs. this is a dream. But a clever author, one who respects the intelligence of their young audience, can upset expectations without sacrificing their story. When author Nikki Loftin decided to adapt Hans Christian Andersen’s tale The Nightingale into a middle grade contemporary novel, she made a conscious decision to make the book a work of magical realism. A calculated risk, Loftin’s gambit pays off. Nightingale’s Nest is a painful but ultimately emotionally resonant tale of sacrifice and song. A remarkably competent book, stronger for its one-of-a-kind choices.It doesn’t seem right that a twelve-year-old boy would carry around a guilt as deep and profound as Little John’s. But when you feel personally responsible for the death of your little sister, it’s hard to let go of those feelings. It doesn’t help matters any that John has to spend the summer helping his dad clear brush for the richest man in town, a guy so extravagant, the local residents just call him The Emperor. It’s on one of these jobs that John comes to meet and get to know The Emperor's next door neighbor, Gayle. About the age of his own sister when she died, Gayle’s a foster kid who prefers sitting in trees in her own self-made nest to any other activity. But as the two become close friends, John notices odd things about the girl. When she sings it's like nothing you've ever heard before, and she even appears to possibly have the ability to heal people with her voice. It doesn’t take long before The Emperor becomes aware of the treasure in his midst. He wants Gayle’s one of a kind voice, and he’ll do anything to have it. The question is, what does John think is more important: His family’s livelihood or a the full-throated song of one little girl?How long did it take me to realize I was reading a middle grade adaptation of a Hans Christian Andersen short story? Let me first tell you that when I read a book I try not to read even so much as a plot description beforehand so that the novel will stay fresh and clear in my mind. With that understanding, it’s probably not the worst thing in the world that it took a 35-year-old woman thirty-nine pages before she caught on to what she was reading. Still, I have the nasty suspicion that many a savvy kid would have picked up on the theme before I did. As it stands, we’ve seen Andersen adapted into middle grade novels for kids before. Breadcrumbs, for example, is a take on his story The Snow Queen as well as some of his other, stranger tales. They say that he wrote The Nightingale for the singer Jenny Lind, with whom he was in love. All I know is that in the original tale the story concentrates on the wonders of the natural world vs. the mechanical one. In this book, Loftin goes in a slightly different direction. It isn’t an over-reliance on technology that’s the problem here. It’s an inability to view our fellow human beings as just that. Human beings. Come to think of it, maybe that’s what Andersen was going for in the first place.It was the writing, of course, that struck my attention first. Loftin gives the book beautiful sequences filled with equally beautiful sentences. There’s a section near the end that tells a tale of a tree that fails to keep hold of a downy chick, but is redeemed by saving another bird in a storm. This section says succinctly everything you need to know about this book. I can already see the children’s book and discussion groups around the country that will get a kick out of picking apart this parable. It’s not a hard one to interpret, but you wouldn’t want it to be.As for the characters, there wasn’t a person here that I couldn’t recognize as real. I was quite taken with the fact that Loftin continually sidesteps a lot of the usual middle grade tropes. Gayle's nasty foster brother Jeb, for example, could easily have been labeled the typical bully type character for this book. Bullies in children’s books, after all, have a tendency to be one-note characters. Jeb, in contrast, is capable of talking like a normal human being from time to time. He’s a horrible human being at other times, but at least you get the sense that he’s not just a walking two-dimensional caricature. It makes a difference.The ending is going to be problematic for some folks. It is not, I should say, unsatisfying. I think even people who don't have a problem with what it says will only have a problem with HOW it goes about saying it. But the end of the book goes so far as to make it clear that this story really doesn’t take place in the real world in which we live. The characters face real world problems, but that doesn’t preclude the presence of something magical. “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio . . .” and all that jazz. For some readers, this may feel like a kind of betrayal. As if the author didn’t have the guts to stay in the real world from start to finish, but instead had to rely on something otherworldly for her climax. I don’t see it that way. Loftin’s choices seem very deliberate here, from page one onward. Just because something is magical, that doesn’t mean you can’t interpret the book in other ways. Don’t like the supernatural element at the end? Then why are you assuming it’s real? After all, we’re getting this whole story through Little John’s perspective. Who’s to say he’s the world’s most reliable narrator? Just because a book is written for children, that doesn’t mean you have to take it at face value.In any case, I don’t believe the magic detracts in the least from what Loftin is saying here about the banality of poverty. This isn’t a book that romanticizes what it's like to be poor. It’s just Little John’s everyday existence, to a certain extent. And with the introduction of The Emperor, readers get to see firsthand how money, or the lack thereof, has a lot to do with self-worth and what you have to do with your pride and sense of self-worth when you’re indebted to another person. Little John witnesses firsthand his own father’s humiliation at the hands of the Emperor, and then finds himself in possession (in a sense) of something The Emperor wants. But rather than give him power, this just focuses the rich man’s attention on the boy, making him easy prey. Better that you never have something the wealthy think that they need. And as Little John says at one point, “What was right didn’t have a thing to do with what was.” Reading the book, I found it enormously painful. But I at least had the wherewithal to realize that it was uniquely painful to me as a mother. Any parent reading this is going to instantly fret and worry and think about Gayle’s position in her foster home. But for kids reading this book they’re going to identify with Little John and Gayle as children, not as parents. This is a book about terrible decisions made, for the most part, by good people. This can, at times, make the story emotionally hard to follow, but I like to think Ms. Loftin had things well in hand when she came up with her tale. There’s a great comfort in knowing that even when you screw up royally, you can still find forgiveness. If kids take nothing else away from this book, I hope that they understand that much. Smart and beautiful by turns, The Nightingale’s Nest does one thing that few will contest. Once you’ve read it, you’ll have a hard time getting it out of your head. For ages 10 and up.
Nightingale s Nest by Nikki Loftin NIGHTINGALES NEST is a novel with magical realism that s chock full of pain as well as hope Little John and Gayle, a girl who s songs can heal, are characters for middle grade students looking to find some magic in the world, especially when things are dark and The Nightingale s Nest Poem by John Clare Poem Hunter The Nightingale s Nest poem by John Clare Up this green woodlandride lets softly roveAnd list the nightingale she dwells just here.Hush let the woodgate softly clap for fear Page Nightingale s Nest Loftin, Nikki Inspired by a Hans Christian Andersen story, Nightingale s Nest is an unforgettable novel about a boy with the weight of the world on his shoulders and a girl with the gift of healing in her voice Magical realism meets coming of age in this sensitive and haunting novel. Nightingale s Nest Loftin, Nikki Inspired by a Hans Christian Andersen story, Nightingale s Nest is an unforgettable novel about a boy with the weight of the world on his shoulders and a girl with the gift of healing in her voice. Nightingale s Nest by Nikki Loftin, Paperback Barnes Inspired by a Hans Christian Andersen story, Nightingale s Nest is an unforgettable novel about a boy with the weight of the world on his shoulders and a girl with the gift of healing in her voice Magical realism meets coming of age in this sensitive and haunting novel BCCB, starred Nightingales Nests recipe Epicurious May , Nightingales Nests Antalya is known for its oranges Wherever they are grown in abundance, the blossoms are distilled into orange flower water This British Romantic Literature The Nightingale s Nest Mar , One of the poems that Clare had created is titled The Nightingale s Nest This poem follows the thought process of the narrator as he observes a nightingale in the woods This poem contains aspects of nature which was very common to romantic poems. An analysis of John Clare s The Nightingale s Nest and Apr , In particular, in Clare s The Nightingale s Nest, I found his imagery of the scene surrounding the nightingale extremely intricate and beautiful Laughing and creeping through the mossy rails here have I hunted like a very boy, Creeping on hands and knees through matted thorns amazing facts about nightingales and the best places to British Garden Birds Nightingale The nest is constructed by the female from dead leaves and grass, and lined with fine grasses and hair The smooth, glossy eggs are olive brown and about mm by mm Incubation is by the female only The young are fed by both parents.

About Author

  • Nikki Loftin Post author

    Nikki Loftin is the author of The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy, which Publishers Weekly called mesmerizing, and Kirkus called irresistible, and Nightingale s Nest, which received a starred review from Kirkus She lives with her Scottish photographer husband just outside Austin, Texas, surrounded by dogs, goats, and small, loud boys Nikki is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin graduate writing program MA, 98 She has been a popcorn seller, waitress, bookstore employee, Music and Gifted Talented teacher, and a Director of Family Ministries.Nikki teaches Zumba dance aerobics in a mostly vain attempt to combat the ever threatening Writer s Butt When under extreme stress, or on submission with a novel, she bakes obsessively as a coping technique Her favorite food obsession is ice cream, preferably Blue Bell Moo llenium Crunch On very good days, she prefers writing even to ice cream.Nikki is represented by Suzie Townsend of New Leaf Literary Agency.

One thought on “Nightingale's Nest

  • Magical realism in children s novels is a rarity It s not unheard of, but when children s authors want fantasy, they write fantasy When they want reality, they write reality A potentially uncomfortable mix of the two is harder to pull off Ambiguity is not unheard of in books for youth, but it s darned hard to write Why go through all that trouble For that reason alone we don t tend to see it in children s books Kids like concrete concepts Good guys vs bad guys This is real vs this is a dream But [...]


  • this is a beautiful story about friendship and redemption little john tries to make it right by gayle and his family it is also a story about religion and God i do enjoy this book but not floor by it.


  • Review first posted on Views from the Tesseract shanshad1.wordpress 2014 0When I first heard about this book, I couldn t wait to read it A middle grade fantasy with gorgeous cover art and a story that references Hans Christian Andersen s The Nightingale That s a surefire way to pique my interest Sometimes this backfires on me and my high hopes just don t live up to the actual text But after reading this, I m happy to report it exceeded expectations.Twelve year old Little John is spending his sum [...]


  • This book just did not appeal to me Little John s life is so painful, his father is such a hideous character, his mother is absent, there is horrible fear of what Mr King did with Gayle other than record her voice, the foster family is wretched none of this is mitigated by Gayle s magical flight at the story s conclusion.


  • This is going to be one of those times when I read a book that everyone else seems to love and I just don t get it Riddled with sadness and ambiguity, I didn t truly enjoy the story at all The closest I could come to liking this book was appreciating that author Nikki Loftin created something unusual and touching There s a lot of good stuff here, but it didn t come together in a meaningful way for this reader The writing was only so so and the symbolism heavy handed Still, here we go Little John [...]


  • Within a few pages of this book, I could feel the emotion of the story There are some books that you just know will touch you and will make you feel Loftin s Nightingale s Nest is certainly one of them The writing in this book is spectacular and demands to be read not only silently but aloud to a whole group This is a book that I found myself thinking about reading it to a class and discussing it with them I do not feel this way about all books Additionally there is a timeless quality to this st [...]


  • A unique example of magical realism for middle grades that manages to ground itself in authentic emotions and the too rarely seen reality of poverty Little John is an entirely sympathetic, conflicted character, forced to make tough decisions and worrying too much about grown up problems While the adults in his life seem to fail him, they all have hidden complexity and even the Emperor vaccilates between appearing evil and pitiable And Gale steers away from being too angelic, full of all the pout [...]


  • This book was beautiful and disturbing The first time Little John hears Gayle singing he describes, The notes were high and liquid, a honey soft river of sound that seeped right through me I stopped when I heard the first notes and just stood there, dropping cedar cuttings at my feet The song sailed over the fence, like it was meant for me alone Little John is helping his dad with his business by cutting and removing Pecan trees at a rich man s house dubbed, The Emperor, when Little John hears G [...]


  • Originally DNFed Tried again and finished I get why this is getting so much buzz It is exactly the sort of book adults like for kids to read I was swept away by the excellent prose and the nod to Anderson s tale, but have some pretty major issues with how the end wrapped up The book is sad, sad, sad, and then in a rush of 20 pages there is a happily ever after that left me feeling flat That much awful wrapped up that perfectly and fast left me feeling cheated There was no real closure.


  • Incredibly beautiful Nightingale s Nest captures pain, guilt, and beauty in almost every character in this book Loftin integrates fantasy with the authenticity and emotional rawness of real life, and, like Gayle s voice, this story has a healing element in itself Reader, by the time you reach the ending, you may find yourself wanting to let out a tiny sigh of satisfaction and possibly many, many tears.


  • Hauntingly beautiful A story about the power of grief to overwhelm and surround us What a story full of so many different kinds of moments worrisome, sweet and lovely, angst filled Upper middle grade.


  • This book is a beautiful tune that speaks to your heart and nourishes your soul If you are not familiar with the fairy tale origin s check out the Hans Anderson version here.This book s literary quality weaves around you like the nest Gayle built Little John s narrative is heart wrenching as he struggles against the harsh realities of life and protecting what he assumes is Gayle s crazy naivette and innocence The gem lies at how John is at constant conflict with himself He struggles with overcom [...]


  • Based on a story from Hans Christian Andersen, this book takes The Nightingale and turns it into magical realism Little John s family is in turmoil His little sister died jumping out of a tree, his mother can t deal with the loss and often forgets that her daughter died, and his father is struggling to make enough money to keep them from being evicted So Little John has to help his father take down trees to make money It is at Mr King s home that Little John first meets Gayle, a young foster chi [...]


  • I stumbled on this book at the 2015 Texas Book Festival after hearing the author speak It is a modern reimagining of Hans Christian Andersen s tale The Nightingale set in a small Texas town It is a story about a boy who not only carries the weight of the world on his shoulders but an unbearable guilt for a family tragedy that he feels is his own His family is poor so poor that had to pawn his Christmas gifts to cover the rent His dad is a hard worker but makes poor choices concerning money Littl [...]


  • Nightingale s Nest written by Nikki Loftin and published in 2014 by Penguin Group This dark, sensitive middle grade novel is purportedly inspired by Hans Christian Andersen s tale The Nightingale, but really very loosely The original story tells of an evil Emperor with a mechanical bird whose beautiful song cures him Loftin s book is narrated by a twelve year old boy, Little John, who is plagued with bad memories, guilt and dark thoughts The gorgeous, trilling songs come from the throat of a lit [...]


  • Oh wow Carrie Gelson called Nightingale s Nest hauntingly beautiful I whole heartedly agree Since it is based on a fairy tale The Nightingale , it is bound to be somewhat creepy, which it definitely is It makes me think of books such as Breadcrumbs and The Real Boy by Anne Ursu Lots of theme topics come into play right and wrong, anger, death and recovery, fear and courage, mental illness, greed, friendship, redemption, forgiveness, etc At one point, the main character, Little John, says, What w [...]


  • Nikki Loftin has a way with words that is hard to describe all of her stories are achingly beautiful, reach right into you and touch your heart, and all have this sense of uneasiness that never quite settles as you read I loved this story It was so fascinatingly unique, and I was bewitched from the first page On the surface, Nightingale s Nest is a simplistic story, but there was so much at work Behind the wonders of true friendship, the struggles a family goes through after the loss of one of [...]


  • ARC provided by NetGalley I love magical children s stories such as this one Twelve year old John is trying to keep his family together after a devastating loss Mom is losing her grip on reality while Dad is losing himself in a bottle As the family sinks deeper into both despair and debt, John is called upon to help his dad s landscaping business It s on one of these jobs that he meets Gayle, a fragile and mysterious foster child Their lives intersect as he tries to save her while continuing to [...]


  • I think I just get too grumpy about magical realism maybe I really liked the realistic parts of this really powerful look at a family being torn apart by grief and poverty but view spoiler like was she an angel or a bird or WHAT, just like, why Also what was Mr King DOING to her Were we supposed to be reading it as sexual abuse, because that was the vibe I got But also, NOT that hide spoiler I m kind of irrationally irritated that the marketing for this compares it to Bridge to Terabithia, like, [...]


  • I DID like this book I feel compelled to say that upfront because for a long time through the book, I was plagued with that uneasy feeling one gets with certain allusions to certain situations involving vulnerable children I wondered how the book was going to explain what really happened It does, and it doesn t Although this doesn t detract from the sheer quality of this book, it still left the pit of stomach feeling wobbly even if the ending righted the world again I shouldn t be surprised It w [...]


  • I love this book Is one one the few books that I read, lead me to tears Which not all books can do that Is just too amazing The every page you read will only bring you tears Which I felt is just an amazingly written book Super duper touching.


  • This is a gorgeous, lyrical, haunting story that will grab your heart and squeeze it to pieces I loved it and blurbed it I can t wait to share this novel with my family nieces and friends.




  • It took me a little while ti get drawn into it, but after about 75 pages, I realized I was reading a very good book One of the best of 2014 so far Maybe the best I haven t decided yet.




  • Not my usual cup of tea, but I was really intrigued by the cover then the summary so hear I am This is a book for Young Folks, but I really enjoyed it You have this young guy John His family lost their little sister and daughter The mom really has lost a grip The father is mad all the time and the little guy is just lost He s helping his father with his landscaping business when out of the ordinary he hears an unfamiliar sound He wasn t sure what it was, but finds out that it s a young girl, who [...]


  • Any book that isn t finished cannot, I m afraid, get than two stars.But look, I will give the book this, it was an interesting take on the Nightingale story, and there were parts in it that were almost not entirely miserable, sad and depressing But ultimately poor Little John or was that Jon Memory don t fail me now ah it did , just never really gets a break and no one ever seems to have any sparkle, not even Gale I honestly couldn t work up the urge to find out how the story ended it was like [...]


  • As much as I wanted to enjoy this book, I never ended up loving it The beginning was captivating and made me ask questions, but as I read on I began to felt bored The plot was underwhelming, and it wasn t much to fall in love with It lacked clarity and the pacing was too slow for me to get invested in it The book wasn t engaging enough, and didn t feel like much of a story to fall in love with.


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