Friday, 11 April 2008

She was today, she was tomorrow.

Stargirl Jerry Spinelli.

Rating 4/5

Stargirl is different to anyone who has ever been to Mica High before. She has a weird name; a pet rat; she plays the ukulele; she serenades people in the lunch hall; she gives out gifts on birthdays and holidays; she cheers for the opposite team; she believes in enchanted places. All her attention is focused out on the world. She is unselfconscious and free of normal constraints.

We could all do with being a bit more like Stargirl.

Everyone falls in love with her but especially the narrator, sixteen year old Leo. The blossoming of their relationship is very sweetly written. It captured the magic of first love.

"She was bendable light. She shone round very corner of my day."

Then everything goes wrong. All the things the students initial loved about Stargirl start to unsettle them. She doesn't fit and her differences no longer make her special they make her a threat to the normal order of things. They start to see her behaviour not as something to aspire to but something that makes them feel bad and mean and little. The whole student body shuns her and Leo along with her. So she tries to change. Not because she needs their validation but because Leo does and she loves him.

Trying to change yourself for other people leads to all sorts of problems though. The lack of warmth from the student body only has the power to hurt her when she's trying to be someone she isn't. When she's being true to her own nature other people's opinions don't bother her.

Stargirl is about: being who you are; accepting people as they are; first love; looking out at the world rather than in at yourself; and following your own path. If your doing what you want to do, what you feel is right and important than life is much clearer and simpler than if your trying to please others.

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  1. Your last paragraph sold me. Sounds like a beautiful book!

  2. great review of this 'one of my all-time favorites'! i'm so glad you liked it!

  3. Nymeth - good, hope you enjoy it.

    Alison - I loved it, glad you liked the review :)

  4. I've seen this book reviewed quite a few times and am finally adding it to my wish list! Thanks for the great review :)

  5. I really enjoyed this book so much. Especially seeing how she attempted to change and "fit in". My review is here/


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