SPARROW by Sarah Moon

SPARROW, by debut author Sarah Moon, is the story of a sensitive, gifted African American girl who tells us with mordant humor what it feels like to spend every day wishing so hard that you could fly away from it all.


Sparrow has always had a difficult time making friends. She would always rather stay home on the weekends with her mother, an affluent IT executive at a Brooklyn bank, reading, or watching the birds, than play with other kids. And that’s made school a lonely experience for her. It’s made LIFE a lonely experience.

But when the one teacher who really understood her — Mrs. Wexler, the school librarian, a woman who let her eat her lunch in the library office rather than hide in a bathroom stall, a woman who shared her passion for novels and knew just the ones she’d love — is killed in a freak car accident, Sparrow’s world unravels and she’s found on the roof of her school in an apparent suicide attempt. With the help of an insightful therapist, Sparrow finally reveals the truth of her inner life. And it’s here that she discovers an outlet in rock & roll music . . .



“An extremely diverse cast of characters, including people of different races, gender, and sexual orientation, drives the strong, delicate narrative of Moon’s debut novel. Sparrow deals with different emotional issues against a backdrop of lyrical language and touching images, with a healthy dose of musical connections that beg to be added to a playlist and a bibliography of favorite books that is as consciously diverse as the cast. Sparrow is a character to learn from.

Both inspiring and useful for anyone who’s ever felt like they don’t belong.” –Kirkus



Sarah Moon is a teacher and writer. She lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, with her wife, Jasmine, and their dog, Otis. She is the coeditor of The Letter Q, a young adult anthology. Sparrow is her first young adult novel.