Stargirl

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Stargirl

by Jerry Spinelli

Random House Children's Books | May 11, 2004 | Mass Market Paperbound

4.2222 out of 5 rating. 63 Reviews
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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.


From the Hardcover edition.

Format: Mass Market Paperbound

Dimensions: 208 pages, 6.83 × 4.25 × 0.6 in

Published: May 11, 2004

Publisher: Random House Children's Books

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0440416779

ISBN - 13: 9780440416777

Appropriate for ages: 13 - 17

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– More About This Product –

Stargirl

by Jerry Spinelli

Format: Mass Market Paperbound

Dimensions: 208 pages, 6.83 × 4.25 × 0.6 in

Published: May 11, 2004

Publisher: Random House Children's Books

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0440416779

ISBN - 13: 9780440416777

About the Book

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.

"From the Hardcover edition."

Read from the Book

When I was little, my Uncle Pete had a necktie with a porcupine painted on it.  I though that necktie was just about the neatest thing in the world.  Uncle Pete would stand patiently before me while I ran my fingers over the silky surface, half expecting to be stuck by one of the quills.  Once, he let me wear it.  I kept looking for one of my own, but I could never find one. I was twelve when we moved from Pennsylvania to Arizona.  When Uncle Pete came to say goodbye, he was wearing the tie.  I though he did so to give me one last look at it, and I was grateful.  But then, with a dramatic flourish, he whipped off the tie and draped it around my neck.  "It''s yours," he said.  "Going-away present." I loved that porcupine tie so much that I decided to start a collection.  Two years after we settled in Arizona, the number of ties in my collection was still one.  Where do you find a porcupine necktie in Mica, Arizona - or anywhere else, for that matter? On my fourteenth birthday, I read about myself in the local newspaper.  The family section ran a regular feature about kids on their birthdays, and my mother had called in some info.  The last sentence read: "As a hobby, Leo Borlock collects porcupine neckties." Several days later, coming home from school, I found a plastic bag on our front step.  Inside was a gif
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From the Publisher

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.


From the Hardcover edition.

From the Jacket

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.

"From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Born in Norristown, Pennsylvania in 1941, Jerry Spinelli attended Gettysburg College and Johns Hopkins University. Students, teachers and librarians from all over the world enjoy Spinelli's funny and true-to-life books. Spinelli was an editor with Chilton from 1966 to 1989. He launched his career in children's literature with Space Station Seventh Grade in 1982, followed by Who Put That Hair in My Toothbrush? in 1984. In 1991, Spinelli won the Newbery Award and the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for Maniac Magee (1990). He followed this success with such engaging titles as Fourth Grade Rats (1991), Do the Funky Pickle (1992), Who Ran My Underwear Up the Flagpole? (1992), and Picklemania (1993), among others. In 1998, his book Wringer was named a Newbery Honor book. With over 19 published books to his credit, Spinelli finds writing comes easiest when he's dressed comfortably in blue jeans, a flannel shirt and moccasins. Spinelli and his wife, Eileen, have seven children and 11 grandchildren.

Editorial Reviews

"A magical and heartbreaking tale."-Kirkus Reviews, Starred

An ALA Top Ten Best Book for Young Adults

A Publishers Weekly Choice of the Year's Best Books

Bookclub Guide

1. As the saying goes, "love is blind." How is this truly the case with Leo and Stargirl? Looking back, how can you tell that Leo was falling for her? And does he stay in love with her, even after she moves away?

2. Professor Archie Brubaker is the voice of reason throughout the novel. Archie has many thoughtful insights into the personality of Stargirl, and at one point says about her: "You'll know her more by your questions than by her answers. Keep looking at her long enough. One day you might see someone you know." Now that you've finished the novel, what do you think Archie means by this statement?

3. While Stargirl is a guest on "Hot Seat," Kevin asks her why she changed her name. Do you accept her reason why she did this? How is "Stargirl" an ideal name for her? Think about the possibility of changing your name several times. Do you think your name is an integral part of who you are, or can you imagine yourself with another one?

4. In the beginning, Hillari Kimble seems to be the only person who openly dislikes Stargirl. But then others begin to feel the same way as Hillari. Do you think that groups of people need a leader, like Hillari Kimble, to turn opinions against another person?

5. Do you, as a reader, like Stargirl? If you were a student at Mica High, would you reach out to her like Dori Dilson, or reject her like Hillari Kimble? Do you think the students of Mica High are ultimately too harsh on Stargirl?

6. Popularity, fitting in, and "sameness" are all key themes in Stargirl. Find places in the novel that reinforce these themes and discuss. Do you think Stargirl ever wanted to be popular? How might she define popularity?

7. 1.After Stargirl changes back to "Susan," Leo says "she look magnificently, wonderfully, gloriously ordinary. She looked just like a hundred other girls at Mica High…. I had never been so happy and proud in my whole life." How did you feel when you read this part of the novel?

8. Author Jerry Spinelli plays two major events in this novel off of each other: the basketball championships and the oratorical contest. After Stargirl wins the oratorical contest, Leo says that "the cheering is as wild as that of the crowd at a championship basketball game." Stargirl is the focus at both events but in very different ways. How is she rejected at one and accepted at the other? And how does this acceptance ultimately lead to rejection?

9. The Ocotillo Ball at the end of the novel represents a turning point. Do you think Stargirl made a deliberate attempt to say good-bye at the ball? What do you make of the students' behavior at the ball, and what does this tell you about the student body of Mica High as a whole?

10. Archie says about Stargirl, "Star people are rare. You'll be lucky to meet another." Do you think Leo was grown-up enough for his relationship with Stargirl? How about the students of Mica High? Will Leo ever figure Stargirl out?

11. What is the irony at the end of Stargirl? Is Stargirl popular after all? What happens to the "popular" kids in the story-do they stay popular?

Appropriate for ages: 13 - 17

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