Book of the Week: My Friend, the Starfinder

My Friend, the Starfinder by George Ella Lyon Illustrated by Stephen Gammell

Published: 2008 by Atheneum/Richard Jackson Books

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

I totally pick out books based upon the covers. And not that this cover isn’t beautiful or eye-catching, but what really made me made me pick up this book was the title. I felt that the title was so full of wonder and imagination that I just had to pick it up.

For some reason the man depicted in this book made me think of my own grandfathers and all the memories I have with them. For that reason alone, I adore this book.

I love how this story is about a storyteller. I think this shows the importance of storytelling, and the storytellers place in our world.

I think this book just how willing children are to believe. It shows a child’s innocence.

I love how when the story is being told from the young girl’s perspective it’s full of color, but when the elderly man starts to tell stories of his own, the colors shift to black and white. I love the dramatic effect it has on the overall story.

I particularly love the story of how a star fell from the heavens, down into a field, where the old man as a young boy proceeded to find it, preserved it, and kept it for all time.

The description is this book are lush, and paint beautiful pictures in the reader’s mind. For example, the fallen star is described as: “warm and smooth, as an egg straight from the hen.”

As a whole, the book is an explosion of color. And I love that.

Stephen Gammell’s illustrations are reminiscent of some of his other works – specifically the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark books. Don’t misunderstand, the illustrations aren’t scary – far from it. In fact they’re downright fantastical.

In a lot of ways this book is a fantasy.

I also love how the young girl befriends the elderly man with the soft clothes who sits on his green porch. I think this shows kids that friends come in all shapes, sizes, and ages. And that a friend could be found almost anywhere.

The writing is both strong and inviting.

I love how this book allows reader’s imagination to soar.

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