Stargirl Background

Stargirl Background

Stargirl is a young adult novel written by Jerry Spinelli that narrows in on the personalities and issues of students in high schools. The book earned the Parents Choice Gold Award; a New York Times Bestseller, an ALA Top Ten Best Books Award winner, and a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. The sequel Love, Stargirl was released on August 14th, 2007.

Leo, the male protagonist, is part of the “we”, the large mass of students who actively try to be the same. He represents the conformity of the school population, as well as the emergence of the typical stereotypes in the school atmosphere. He is the generic student that goes throughout the school day. Stargirl is the sun in a sky of stars. She is the difference between conformity and being unique, and shows it through her personality and attitude towards her social life such as ukelele playing, rain dancing, and singing. She is the anomaly in a school of like-minded people, and at first, isn't taken positively. However, she soon starts to become the most popular girl in school with the student body appreciating her different quirks. The book goes on to show how her actions affect the group mentality at school, and impact the school through events and experiences.

Stargirl focuses on a minority of the population. Looking in with two different perspectives, the reader can be in and out of the circle, and analyze the cause and effects of each action in both circles. Spinelli emphasizes characteristics of loyalty, friendship, and individuality as the book goes on and let’s reader really wonder about the square mindset of the general population.

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