In the tradition of Sharon Creech and Wendy Mass, Corey Ann Haydu’s sparkling middle grade debut is a sister story with a twist of magic, a swirl of darkness, and a whole lot of hope.
Silly is used to feeling left out. Her three older sisters think she’s too little for most things—especially when it comes to dealing with their mother’s unpredictable moods and outbursts. This summer, Silly feels more alone than ever when her sisters keep whispering and sneaking away to their rooms together, returning with signs that something mysterious is afoot: sporting sunburned cheeks smudged with glitter and gold hair that looks like tinsel.
When Silly is brought into her sisters’ world, the truth is more exciting than she ever imagined. The sisters have discovered a magical place that gives them what they truly need: an escape from the complications of their home life. But there are dark truths there, too. Silly hopes the magic will be the secret to saving their family, but she’s soon forced to wonder if it could tear them apart. (via Goodreads)
Basically if you compare a book to Sharon Creech, I’m automatically interested. I was OBSESSED with her books when I was younger. Rules for Stealing Stars is the first time I’ve felt that someone else has captured a similar magic in storytelling.
This book tackles a lot of tough issues: an alcoholic mother, a spacey father, sister cruelty, aching loneliness, mistakes, and trying to escape reality. I loved how the author faced these issues with sensitivity and vulnerability. There are elements to this story that every reader can relate to.
Silly herself was not only relatable, but also so familiar. She reminded me of myself when I was younger, even though I’ve never been in a similar family situation. Silly wants to be included in what her sisters are doing, even though they think she’s too young to handle it. She yearns for something to give her hope. She makes mistakes, but she tries so hard to fix them. She can be self-centered at times, but she’s also loyal, caring, and brave.