May Bird and the Ever After
First edition cover
|Author||Jodi Lynn Anderson|
|Series||The May Bird Series|
|Genre||Young adult fantasy/action|
|Pages||336 (Original hardcover)
|LC Class||PZ7.A53675 Mayb 2005|
|Followed by||May Bird: Among the Stars|
May Bird lives alone with her mother and her cat, Somber Kitty (a hairless Rex), on the edge of a wooded swamp in West Virginia. She loves to draw and make believe, but does not fit in at school. Most people are not very comfortable in the woods, but the woods of Briery Swamp fit May Bird like a fuzzy mitten. There, she is safe from school and the taunts and teases of kids who do not understand her. Hidden in the trees, May is a warrior princess, and her cat is her brave guardian. Then May falls into the lake.
When she crawls out, May finds herself in a world that is inhabited by things she thought were just in her imagination. She sees many, many ghosts and other amazing creatures. A ghost named Pumpkin (with a pumpkin head) is her guardian and follows her into the lake to help her through. So does her faithful cat after she does not return. It is a place few live ones (living people) have ever seen. Here, towns glow blue beneath zipping stars and the people walk through walls. Here the Book of the Dead holds the answers to everything in the universe. And here, if May is discovered, the horrifyingly evil Bo Cleevil will destroy her. May Bird must get out. This is the beginning of May Bird's daring journey into the Ever After, a haunting place where true friends—and many terrible foes—await her on every corner. She gets help from Pumpkin, her house ghost/guardian, who lives with the Beekeeper Arista in a giant house shaped like a beehive. She is told that she needs to go see the Lady of North Farm, a place no ghost is willing to go.
Along the journey May meets new friends and sees unimaginable sights and faces many strange adventures.
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The novel received a very positive reception from critics and readers, i.e., Kirkus Review starred the novel, describing it as "rare fun."