This is a cute, “innocent” YA romance about a quirky girl who moves to a new high school. It’s a rarity in YA romance because it’s told from the boy’s perspective.
Author: Jerry Spinelli
Age group: YA
Synopsis: Eleventh grader Leo Bordock tells the story of new student Susan “Stargirl” Caraway. In a high school that values conformity, Stargirl sticks out like a sore thumb. After years of being home-schooled, she starts tenth grade at the local public school. She wears kimonos, plays the ukelele, and sings “Happy Birthday” to students she doesn’t know. Initially shunned by her peers, Stargirl slowly grows in popularity after joining the cheerleading squad. Leo is surprised to find himself attracted to her kindness and independence. However, things begin to change when Stargirl’s actions are blamed for ruining the basketball team’s chances at the championship. Leo struggles with his feelings for Stargirl as her popularity waxes and then wanes. Can he really love a girl whom others see as a freak?
This is a wonderful story about marching to the beat of your own drummer. I love that it’s told from the boy’s perspective. It’s sweet and innocent and makes you think about how willing you are to stick up for your own beliefs.