This week’s theme is “a book that every book lover should read.” For this prompt, I chose Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. I remember reading this book in late middle school or early high school and it made a lasting impression on me, and I think all age groups can get a lot out of it.
I think my key takeaway, both then and as an adult looking back on the book, is to embrace what makes us different and to not let anyone squash that part of us because it’s strange and makes them uncomfortable.
Now, onto the covers.
This was the original edition of Stargirl that I picked up at Borders many years ago. I think a part of my initial attraction was that the book had a simple cover and it had no words on it, just these glyphs of a star and a girl.
It wasn’t until I engaged with it that I got the proper title, and by then I was interested enough that I looked at the back and decided to pick this book up.
Many editions of this book reference the original in some way. My favorite editions of this book are the French, Modern Greek, Spanish, and Vietnamese editions.
The first edition is the French edition and I love the script and the big star. The flower to dot the I, and the falling petals are a nice abstract touch.
The childlike nature of the Modern Greek edition feels perfect for the tone of this book. I’ll be honest, I wish a few more of the cutout children were wearing skirts if you’re going to go with a stick-figure representation of gender. But I also really like the magazine cut out title.
The Portuguese edition is similar to the original edition, but I like the font and text used to break out the vast amount of blue space. I also love the arches that the text form. It makes the star look like it’s shooting across the book’s cover.
The last one is the Vietnamese edition. I don’t know why I like this. It feels like it would fit a graphic novel more, but I think the drawing looks just like I pictured “Stargirl” when I read the book years ago.
Least Favorite Covers
It may be because I read this book so young and I am so used to the original cover, but I don’t like actual models on the cover. So, for this reason, my least favorite editions are the Hungarian, Lithuanian, German, and Chinese editions.
The first one is the Hungarian edition, and although it doesn’t include an actual model, I don’t like the drawing. For some reason, this seems very juvenile to me, and while it’s a young adult novel, this cover makes it look more middle grade.
The Lithuanian edition doesn’t look inviting. I can’t see myself picking up this book in a store.
The German edition is on this list for the same reason, but with the additional reason, the angle of the photo is fricken awkward. Like doesn’t it look like there is another head coming out of this girl’s neck?
I don’t mind the Chinese edition so much. It feels ethereal and inviting, but I think that the model fits the main character.