Sonderbooks

Sonderbooks Book Review of

Stars

by Mary Lyn Ray

illustrated by Marla Frazee


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Stars

by Mary Lyn Ray
illustrated by Marla Frazee

Review posted February 2, 2012.
Beach Lane Books, 2011. 36 pages.
Starred Review
2011 Sonderbooks Stand-out: #1 Picture Books

I'm normally not very touched by conceptual picture books trying to give readers a warm feeling. But Stars is something special.

I love Marla Frazee's illustrations, and the children in this book have all the emotional expression of her pictures of Clementine. The words point out how many different kinds of stars there are, from stars in the sky to stars on plants to fireworks.

The illustration on the cover appears in the book accompanied by these words:

What if you could have a star? They shine like little silver eggs you could gather in a basket.

Except you know you can't. Not really.

The next page begins a concept that carries on through further pages:

But you can draw a star on shiny paper and cut around it. Then you can put it in your pocket. Having a star in your pocket is like having your best rock in your pocket, but different.

Because a star is different from a rock.

Later, we're told:

Some days you feel shiny as a star. If you've done something important, people may call you a star.

But some days you don't feel shiny.

Those days, it's good to reach for the one in your pocket.

Of course, the perfect marriage of words and illustrations enhance these words, as well as the appropriate vertical format.

I think I may go make a star to put in my pocket.