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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Look to the Stars

Sometimes I marvel at my good fortune in friends. When a thoughtful friend brings me a book like Mary Lyn Ray's Stars, I feel even more fortunate, especially since it will not be officially released until October. My connection to the book goes back to the latest issue of The Horn Book, the cover of which features Marla Frazee's artwork of three children sitting within a tree trunk (think Muir Woods National Monument). One is reading, two are listening, and a basket of treats sits in the middle of them. All around and on the tree are tiny green stars.

In Stars, the reader gets advice. "If you ever lose your star, you can draw another. Or you can find one. There are places. Moss where you might see fairies is made of green stars." Those words are paired with that starry green illustration, and it looks even more lovely on a full page than on a magazine cover. Some advice takes me back to my childhood: "Pin a star on your shirt and you can be sheriff. Put a star on a stick and you've made a wand." The ponytailed character demonstrating this advice is wearing red cowgirl boots, just like I wished I could have.

I love the embossed stars on the cover. I love thinking about stars gathered in a basket. I love the contrasts between starry days and not-so-shiny days. I love the images of stars as strawberry or pumpkin blossoms or dandelion fluff. Most of all I love the last pages where people are huddled together on the horizon, watching stars and fireworks.

Put this book on your list of ones to get for someone you love. I feel loved just holding it.


  1. It sounds delightful. Do you still long for red cowboy boots?

  2. I'll be looking for this!

    P.S. I didn't want cowboy boots when I was a child, but the cowboy boots I bought as an adult, to go country dancing, are one of the happiest things that I wear!