A small, bespectacled bird struggles with friendship.
Nerdy Birdy, with his too-small wings, is unlike the cool birds. They have impressive attributes: “abs of steel” for Eagle, “glossy red attire” for Cardinal, and “worm-fed physique” for Robin. Nerdy Birdy, allergic to birdseed, wears glasses that are too big. He likes reading and video games (he’s especially devoted to World of Wormcraft). He’s not cool, and it’s “awfully lonely not being a cool birdy.” So he’s delighted to discover other nerdy birds: “Their glasses were too big. Their wings were too small. At least half of them had inhalers.” And there are “way more nerdy birdies than cool birdies.” Now he has friends. The story could have ended there, but instead it ever so sweetly takes flight. A large vulture moves into the neighborhood. While the cool birds find her unacceptable, Nerdy Birdy has confidence in his friends: “Being cool is exhausting. You should hang around with us,” he tells her. Though that’s not exactly what happens, clearly Nerdy Birdy understands the heart of friendship. Davies’ nicely frayed lines and ink-and-watercolor cartoon illustrations create a perfect hybrid of bird and, well, nerd. Reynolds’ gently ironic tone will appeal to elementary-age readers who face similar friendship conundrums—and who might draw confidence from Nerdy Birdy.
Very funny and full of hope—and feathers. (Picture book. 4-8)