As I work my way through the 2015 Pop Sugar Reading Challenge I got stumped on the prompt for “Book with a One Word Title.” The more I thought about it, a friend had once told me that Stargirl was one of her favorite books. To be honest at the time I thought I had never read Stargirl. Before our recent trip to France I downloaded a few books from the library that I knew would be easy reading for the plane.
On the way back from France I picked up Stargirl. I had finished another series (I’ll get into that later) and was looking for something quick and easy to help get through more of the flight. It turns out, I have read Stargirl before probably 15-20 years ago.
Stargirl. From the day she arrives at quiet Mica High in a burst of color and sound, the hallways hum with the murmur of “Stargirl, Stargirl.” She captures Leo Borlock’ s heart with just one smile. She sparks a school-spirit revolution with just one cheer. The students of Mica High are enchanted. At first.
Then they turn on her. Stargirl is suddenly shunned for everything that makes her different, and Leo, panicked and desperate with love, urges her to become the very thing that can destroy her: normal. In this celebration of nonconformity, Newbery Medalist Jerry Spinelli weaves a tense, emotional tale about the perils of popularity and the thrill and inspiration of first love.
While Stargirl is about a first love, that was actually one of the themes that seemed to be at the bottom of my list when it came to reading this book. The story line of being true to yourself was the one that stood out the most to me. Stargirl’s rocks to describe her happiness almost broke my heart when it was down to three.
I loved that Stargirl sang happy birthday, danced in the rain, decorated her desk, cheered for the other team and didn’t care what other students thought about her. She was true to herself. I found myself mad at Leo when he was excited to see her conform.
The ending couldn’t have been more perfect. I guess I need to hurry up and read Love, Stargirl. Yup, there is a sequel.
Who is Stargirl For?
Everyone. Yes, everyone.
Often times we need that little reminder in society that we tend to try and fit in with the crowd. Stargirl did her own thing. When she did try and fit in she wasn’t herself. Jerry Spinelli reminds us to do what makes us happy even if others don’t agree with it.
I’m pretty sure I was in elementary school or junior high when I first read Stargirl. I feel like that is the perfect age and that all kids should be reading this book. Yes there is the underlying relationship story line but the lessons about being true to yourself need to be taught.
Stargirl reminds us that our happiness should not be determined by the other people around us. We are in control of it.
Have you read Stargirl? What is your favorite part?