My debut novel, The Someday Birds, (HarperCollins), is a book about a bird-loving boy on a life-changing journey. Here’s a short trailer:
“Offering a mixture of suspense, mystery, tragedy and humor, Pla’s story captures both the literal and figurative meanings of journey.” — Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“Pla’s debut is an achingly real portrait of a family living in the in-between place of a wait-and-see prognosis. Charlie’s unique voice and his quest to understand the world around him will resonate with readers … Hopeful, authentic, and oddly endearing.” — Kirkus Reviews
“[A] charming, plot-rich story, bolstered by memorable characters. A delight from beginning to end.”
“A truly wonderful, unique story. This celebration of family, individuality, and nature will remind you to always be on the lookout for wonder.”
— Wendy Mass, New York Times best-selling author of THE CANDYMAKERS
“Sally J. Pla does a wonderful job of weaving humor and humanity into this tale of one boy’s triumph.”
— Cammie McGovern, author of JUST MY LUCK and SAY WHAT YOU WILL
“Sally J. Pla’s heartwarming debut novel zings with humor, spot-on characters, and a poignant exploration of the effects of war.”
— Edith Hope Fine, author of UNDER THE LEMON MOON
“Readers will genuinely be captivated and touched by Charlie’s soft and sensitive demeanor and amused by his ponderous exploits across the country. A strong addition to most middle grade collections.” — School Library Journal
“This has all of the possible/impossible elements of successful middle-grade fiction…Readers who enjoyed Sloan’s Counting by 7s (BCCB 9/13) will be the ideal audience for this. ” — Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“The Someday Birds is a raw, funny road trip story that reminds us that even the most literal-minded people can occasionally be sucker-punched by a miracle.” — BookPage.com
“A triumphant debut with the resonance and depth of an instant classic. ” — Nerdy Book Club
“Pla gives us a memorable hero in this lyrical and funny book.” — Shelf Awareness (starred review)
“Lovingly written…[THE SOMEDAY BIRDS]…offers a sense of place that spans the United States from high-tech San Diego to the bright lights and seedy reality of Las Vegas, from the starry skies viewed from a Wyoming mountaintop to the flat expanse of the Great Plains and the murky lushness of a Virginia wildlife preserve.” — The Pirate Tree: Social Justice and Children’s Literature
“Readers young and old will love Charlie and his tale of the Someday Birds.” — Middle Grade Mafia
— A Junior Library Guild Selection for 2017 —
When my three boys were younger, we took lots of summer road trips in our old minivan. They weren’t always easy for my autistic middle son, who didn’t like the change, strange foods, or strange places.
So we’d try to make things as smooth as possible. For instance, we’d always eat at places that served his preferred food — because, as he once put it: “I figure you can survive pretty much anything, as long as you can order the chicken nuggets.”
With that, a story idea hatched in my brain.
The Someday Birds is my own neurodiverse heart-gift to kids who are different, kids put in tough situations, kids dragged into journeys they don’t want. It’s about self-acceptance, about learning how to feel more at ease in the world. There’s humor, and heartache, and birds, lots of birds. (Charlie adores birds, and fervently believes that learning bird-behavior is the ultimate key to understanding human behavior.)
Click here for info on the autistic self-advocacy network.