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Love, Stargirl Paperback – April 28, 2009
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From School Library Journal
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
in a series of letters to leo, stargirl tells her own story. she befriends the people others would overlook or ignore. while some might think of her as a busybody, to the misunderstood, she is an angel. her best friend is a 6-year old, her favorite neighbor is an agoraphobic, and the boy she might be interested in is a thief. but in the center of it all, is her heartache for the boy in arizona. somehow, jerry spinelli makes all of this believable and creates characters you can't help but fall in love with. told simply, sometimes poetically, he brings us to calendar hill at the solstice, to the moment when she truly shines. if i wasn't reading in a public place, i may have let a few tears fall.
and the ending was perfect. a true stargirl ending.
It soon became a favorite of mine and a friend gave me a copy, which I have re-read several times. To me, it's a wonderfully inspiring story of individualism that young girls today need now more than ever, when presented with role models like Paris Hilton and Britney Spears.
Just recently I discovered there was a sequel to this beloved book, and as several other reviewers have noted, it's quite different from Stargirl.
Not only has the narrator shifted from Leo to Stargirl, Stargirl shifts as well. We see her as less of a charming enigma and more of a vulnerable teenager who can't seem to get over her lost love. So she begins writing him a very long letter in daily journal form, and as she does, we see her find herself again as she develops healing relationships with an interesting cast of characters: an agoraphobe, a six year old girl, a man whose devotion to his late wife is all-consuming, and a potential replacement for Leo who has a harem and, possibly, a criminal record.
However, the original novel shows Stargirl's humanity and vulnerability or it would not have been believable. I disagree with the other reviewers who miss the enigma, because Stargirl's great triumph is that she is who she is in spite of--and because of--her humanity and vulnerability.
But I agree with the other reviews that say the ending is perfect. Indeed it is.
Both books inspire me. Both books made me very happy. I want to buy copies for every young woman I know and even every young woman I don't.
Love, Stargirl, has none of that depth. It is about Stargirl pining for her old boyfriend, a boy who really did not treat her well anyway. Yes, she does crazy things in a very Stargirl fashion, yes, she makes new friends, all of them on the fringe in their own way, but the book simply does not touch the reader in the same way as the first book.
Perhaps if, as one other reviewer seems to be, you are in love with Stargirl the character, not Stargirl the message, you will enjoy this book, because that is all it is, Stargirl the character, and her very typical teenage thoughts. However, if, like me, you appreciated the message that the character brought, then you can skip Love, Stargirl, because it's just not there.
Several readers have posted negative reviews based on the fact the title character is now the narrator. Her enigmatic presence is punctured in the sequel as we see the world through her eyes. This is not a negative thing. It's fine to not enjoy this perspective if what you enjoyed about the first book was Stargirl as an ideal, but as a character, I felt the sequel humanized her in a way that was very positive. She's still an atypical, altruistic, even magical girl, but one who has experienced the sting of heartbreak and has sobered. Just a little. She deals with responsibility. She questions romance. She's a person and an interesting one.
Her pining throughout the book for Leo, the narrator of the first novel, has been highlighted by some reviewers as a flaw. I disagree. Every one of us has experienced that before. I can look back through my own diary entries from high school and see how desperately involved I was with the fleeting romances of teenagerhood. This is a normal part of growing up and I believe the book handles it in such a way that we can all relate.
The diary/letter format may throw people off as it is very different from the linear narrative of the original, but I found it interesting. I enjoy diaries and have long kept one myself, so the story felt more organic to me in this format. It won't work for everyone and that's understandable.
The book isn't perfect. Many of the side characters feel phony.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not as good as the first, but still a quick, cute read. Great for any pre-teen. Stargirl is the type of person I hope all of us aspire to be.Published 3 days ago by Emma
Loved this book so much and think it's so inspiring. Nothing to dislike about this book. So much fun reading it.Published 8 days ago
Characters are believable, except for that one elegant nail. I don't think very many people do that. The setting is believable and easy to put yourself into. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
One of the best books I think I have ever read. I used to teach 6th grade and I read it with my class every year. Now I teach 5th and I still use it. Read morePublished 2 months ago by AMM
Loved Stargirl and love this also. Excellent writing that looks inside ourselves and those we choose to spend time with. Read morePublished 2 months ago by kee