- Age Range: 9 - 13 years
- Grade Level: 4 - 8
- Lexile Measure: 0640 (What's this?)
- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: Aladdin (March 14, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1481478486
- ISBN-13: 978-1481478489
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 63 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #831,627 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Star-Crossed Hardcover – March 14, 2017
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From School Library Journal
Gr 46–—When it is announced that the eighth grade play will be Romeo and Juliet, Mattie and her friends shift from obsessing over boys to auditioning for the show. The class's best-looking lad, Liam, is chosen as Romeo, even though he's a clod with the lines. British-born Gemma is Juliet, naturally. Mattie's interest in Gemma intensifies, and eventually Mattie admits the crush to herself. Mattie is recast as Romeo when Liam drops out. Once the kissing scenes begin, Mattie passes out from nerves, but by opening night, she and Gemma are a brilliant, star-crossed couple. This is a mostly breezy young teen romance: the besties are supportive, the boys are pawns, the mean girls are nasty, the school cafeteria is a stage, etc. It is also a sweet coming-out story for junior high readers. The clever Shakespeare content is a bonus, and Dee deserves praise for a strong example of gender-blind casting. The charming cover art accurately portrays the spirit of the novel. VERDICT A fine choice for middle school libraries in need of accessible LGBTQ stories, and a great option for students reading or performing Romeo and Juliet.—Elaine Fultz, Madison Jr. Sr. High School, Middletown, OH
“A sweet story of young love amid middle school theatrics...Readers cannot but help root for Mattie as she discovers bravery she never gave herself credit for, both onstage and in life.” (Kirkus Reviews)
"A sweet coming-out story for junior high readers. The clever Shakespeare content is a bonus. Verdict: A fine choice for middle school libraries in need of accessible LGBTQ stories, and a great option for students reading or performing Romeo and Juliet" (School Library Journal)
Star-Crossed delighted me! Barbara Dee has a light touch and a pitch- perfect middle school voice. This book will have you laughing and groaning in sympathy with crush-addled Mattie and eagerly turning pages. Mattie and her classmates charmed me with their kindness, their humor, their uncertainty, their devotion to one another and to–Shakespeare! Barbara masterfully sprinkles the bard’s words over the narration and stirs the troubles of Romeo and Juliet into the plot. And those Shakespearian insults! Be sure to read Star-Crossed or you’ll miss out.” (Gail Carson Levine, author of Ella Enchanted)
"Star-Crossed takes the drama, humor, friendships, misunderstandings and romance of Romeo & Juliet and transforms them perfectly to the middle school stage. One word about this honest, heartfelt middle grade novel for the theater geek in each of us? Encore!" (Donna Gephart, author of Lily and Dunkin)
"Star-Crossed by Barbara Dee cleverly draws from Romeo and Juliet, providing readers with an insightful introduction to Shakespeare while exploring the complexities of young love. Readers will root for this relationship." (Ami Polonksy, author of Gracefully Grayson)
"Barbara Dee's Star-Crossed is a love story, a rallying cry for girl-power, and a Shakespeare lover's dream come true. When I finished reading, I had a huge smile on my face and a lightness in my heart." (Nora Raleigh Baskin, author of Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story)
Mattie is excited when her favorite English teacher, Mr. Torres, announces that their eighth grade play production will be Romeo and Juliet. As the class studies the play together, Mattie really connects with the characters and their speeches. When the male lead drops out of the play, Mattie steps up to play the part of Romeo. Things become complicated as Mattie develops a crush on her Juliet co-star, Gemma Braithwaite. Gemma is pretty, smart, and talented, and Mattie just can’t figure out what to do about a crush on a girl. It’s a good thing that Mattie has her best friends, a caring sister, and supportive parents to help her work through her complicated feelings. The events of the story playfully mirror the events of Romeo and Juliet. As Mr. Torres teaches his students to understand the Shakespearean text, Mattie finds she can apply what she learns to her own life’s difficulties. This is a sweet look at unexpected first love.
(School Library Connection)
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She said "sounds cool. I like the writing" and then I didn't hear from her again for about 6 hours except for things like "oh my god, oh my god" and this weird shrieking noise which, when asked, apparently meant "I'm so in love with this book that I want to eat it whole right now."
All of her friends have been asking to borrow it - she's usually quite the sharer - and she's refused. Probably going to have to buy another copy.