Discussion: The Outbreak of Black Birds in YA. Is this a good or bad omen?



I have been seeing black birds everywhere lately. It’s not that they haven’t been around before, but when two of your most anticipated releases of this year have a black bird in the title, you start to wonder….

What’s with all the black birds?


Well, before we get to that, let’s examine what black birds symbolize.

There are three main types of black birds that have been popping up:

  • Crows
  • Ravens
  • and just “Blackbirds”

So what does this mean? What are their purpose?

I went scrounging the internet to find you answers. Here is what I found:

The Blackbird, Crow & Raven are closely interlinked and deeply interwoven in the myth and lore of the world. These birds have been seen and depicted as involved with powerful forces for both/either (depending on which story you read) good and bad in almost every major culture recorded.


The Crow:

  • Associated with:
    • Justice
    • Shape shifting
    • Change
    • Magic
  • Can symbolize:
    • The journey from darkness into light
    • Ethical behavior
    • Guidance through the dark


      Both the raven and the crow are associated with shape shifting.

The Raven:

  • Associated with:
    • Exploring the unknown
    • Courage
    • Shape shifting
    • The awakening of magic
  • Can symbolize:
    • A rebirth or renewal
    • The ability to find light in the darkness
    • New occurrences

The Blackbird

  • Associated with:
    • Protecting what is yours
  • Can symbolize:
    • The use of camouflage to protect ones family
    • The ability to sway with the winds of change

To summarize:

  • They all have something to do with magic and omens, as well as darkness and light.

Her name makes so much more sense now, right?


What does this mean for YA?

We are in for some magical stories!!

I’m not gonna lie: I love magic. I love the idea of it and I love books with it. So I’m pretty darn excited to read these books.

A Few of the Published Books Featuring Ravens, Crows, and Blackbirds:


A Few Upcoming Books Featuring Ravens, Crows, and Blackbirds:

What books with black birds am I missing? Which is your favorite? Let me know in the comments!!

(Also, you might have noticed that I just chose books with the birds in the titles… if we were talking about books with black birds on the cover *lets out low long whistle*. Let’s just say this post might never end)

What do you make of all the black birds in YA?

And thanks for reading!!

36 thoughts on “Discussion: The Outbreak of Black Birds in YA. Is this a good or bad omen?

  1. LOVE your post! I am kind of obsessed with black bird images, etc! I even have a pinterest board of raven images…..A new book SEE WHAT I HAVE DONE has an awesome cover of a bird (even though its a pigeon, its cool!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. i absolutely loved this post!
    I knew that many books had a blackbird on their covers or titles, but I never paid that much attention. As I like this kind of things, magic. omen and superstitions, your post enlightened me!

    Liked by 1 person

      • I couldn’t resist telling you this joke because it was just so appropriate with your post! 🙂 And honestly, I don’t know what the blackbirds mean in YA, but I think that black birds are making a comeback in adult literature anyway. Have you seen the cover for The Magpie Murders?

        Liked by 1 person

      • HAHA that joke literally made my day!!
        I don’t read much adult, so I haven’t noticed that! But I do find it very interesting how much black birds pop up. They seem to be huge in literature in general. I’m going to have to look up that cover!!


      • It’s really a compelling symbol because crows do eat crops and stuff and generally aren’t seen as great things, but they can also mean positive things. I have a raven skull necklace (it’s a Bellatrix Lestrange cosplay accessory that NO, I WILL NOT GIVE UP) and I wear it sometimes out to events and people think “oh it’s creepy” but it’s also supposed to be a symbol of intelligence and wisdom.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yea, like I was reading Rabbit cake and in the first few pages it says something like: “most people think owls mean wisdom, but the Romans believed that they were evil and would suck the blood of babies!”

        Liked by 1 person

      • Huh, I didn’t know that! Wasn’t the Owl the symbol of Athena (I know that’s Greek, but a lot of their mythologies overlap)? It’s so crazy how different those two beliefs are about the same bird!


  3. I love this observation! I think it means we’re getting darker and more magical books. Six of Crows is my favorite example of a book with a black bird on the cover! The book is amazing and the gorgeous cover is just another reason to buy it!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: The Sunday Post // August 13, 2017 – Comma Hangover

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