I heard this morning on NPR that today, March 19, is the day the swallows usually return to San Juan Capistrano. This seemingly minor migratory fact caught my attention because I just finished reading Kathryn Fitzmaurice’s debut novel called The Year the Swallows Came Early.
Eleven-year-old Eleanor “Groovy” Robinson lives in San Juan Capistrano. Her father is in jail, her mother works long hours at her beauty salon, and her best-friend is dealing with anger at his mom who has reappeared after several years’ unexplained absence. As she faces these life challenges, the swallows return earlier than usual, bringing with them a series of events that help Eleanor begin to understand the complexities of life and the importance of forgiveness.
The Year the Swallows Came Early
by Kathryn Fitzmaurice
2009, The Bowen Press
ISBN 9780061624971 $16.99
Recommended for ages 9 - 12