What if the new kid in school was so different, so out there, that many think she is a spy for the administration? She’s just too unusual, too unconventional to be for real. Meet Stargirl.  Her clothes are weird.  She acts weird, but after the shock wears off, some of the students are drawn to her uniqueness and try to be unique themselves. But it doesn’t last long.

 “We wanted to define her, to wrap her up as we did each other, but we could not seem to get past “weird” and “strange” and “goofy.” Her ways knocked us off balance. ”

Soon, she is shunned by her classmates except for a few, including Leo.  He is crazy about her, mesmerized by her almost magical presence.

 “She was bendable light: she shone around every corner of my day.”

He is in love, but before long, he is shunned himself.  He can’t understand how Stargirl can be impervious to being despised by everyone. And he is surprised to learn about himself that

 “I had never realized how much I needed the attention of others to confirm my own presence.”

Leo is at his breaking point. He doesn’t know why being part of the crowd is important to him, but it is. How is he supposed to choose between the approval of his classmates and the genuine affection of a girl he really likes?  Should Stargirl have to change to keep Leo and conform to what her classmates consider “normal?”

I loved this book because it celebrates individuality and the uniqueness in all of us. It’s an invitation to be brave enough to embrace being in our own skin. It entices us to refuse to compromise who we are for the sake of conformity. How can you not love that?????

Find Stargirl at your library.


Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli