At First Glance

At First Glance

The Absence of Sparrows by Kurt Kirchmeier

I received this book through my ARC sharing group, the Lit Review Crew.

It’s a 4-day weekend for me with the Easter holiday, so you know I’m taking advantage of this extra reading time! I had a quick dinner with my dad and squeezed in some reading during the forty-five minute drive to his house. I finished We’re Not From Here by Geoff Rodkey and on the way back, started Absence of Sparrows.

Here are my thoughts so far:

Cover Art

The cover art is spot on. It is simple, yet intriguing. There is a balance in the use of colors because the artist used both blues and yellow, which compliment each other nicely. Also, the isolated boy surrounded by birds draws my eye in and peaks my curiosity.


I enjoy books that give me some of the ending and then flash back. This book started with a short page to give the reader hints as to why birds are important to the plot. Then, it went to:

It all started on a blistering hot day in early July…

First Chapters

The first fifty pages are setting up the characters and the mystery. You gain great insight into the uncle (always fixing his hat) and the mom (has anxiety) as well as insight into the main character, Ben. You also get sucked into the main event very quickly when a dark cloud descends upon the town, leaving behind old man Crandall transformed into an obsidian version of himself. This strikes fear in the town, especially when they learn it is happening globally.

What is happening?

How can you stay safe?

Is it random? Or calculated?

What is the cloud? Is it Aliens?

Will it return?

All of these are questions both myself and the characters share.

I will write a review after I finish (which I think will be fairly quickly! I am hooked).

If this book sounds like something you or your students would love, preorder now! It is released May 6, 2019. Click the image below to order from Amazon, or check out your local bookstore or indie bookstore.

Happy reading. If you celebrate Easter, I wish you a happy Easter filled with candy and family time. If not, I wish you a wonderful weekend. Also, those teachers and students on spring break, enjoy yourselves and take some “me” time!

I am a middle school teacher who loves to read ALL KINDS of books. I am part of the ARC-sharing group LitReviewCrew, a co-creator for the YouTube Channel Legit KidLit and the Podcast Read to Write KidLit. Check out my Linktree for more:

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