Book Review: Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli

Rating: StarStarStarStar

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.

Literary Awards: Rebecca Caudill Young Reader’s Book Award Nominee (2003), South Carolina Book Award Nominee for Young Adult Book Award (2003),Grand Canyon Reader Award for Teen Book (2003), Michigan Library Association Thumbs Up! Award Nominee (2001), Iowa Teen Award (2003), Iowa Teen Award (2003), ALA’s Top Ten Best Books for Young Adults (2001), Book Sense Book of the Year Honor Book for Children’s Literature (2001), Abraham Lincoln Award Nominee (2006)



Stargirl is someone you get used to. You hate her at first because of her eccentricity but she grows on you gradually . Spinelli wrote beautifully, that I can really rave about. But Stargirl seemed too ‘far-out’ for me (actual rating is 3.5). I felt like i’m one of those students in Mica High. Most times I don’t understand why she’s like that. But she has her moments, and oh, how heartwrenching those moments were.

I love reading a guy’s POV, and Leo is no different.  His character is plausible; I actually connected more with Leo than Stargirl. He loves Stargirl’s nonconformity with his school, but at the same time, he doesn’t want to publicly acknowledge that . He’s seeing something different in her and yet he hesitates because he doesn’t want to be shunned. But… aren’t we unconciously like that from time to time?

If not for those times that I was spacing out when reading it, I could’ve given this a 5. I’m not sure if Stargirl is really smart, really naive, or just plain unusual. Still, Spinelli’s use of metaphors and impressive writing made reading Stargirl worthwhile. Twice I caught my breath because my heart is breaking with Stargirl. First, i was falling in love. Second, i was falling apart.

#25 Off-the-Shelf Reading Challenge 2011



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”