The North Star

Peter H. Reynolds, 1961-

Book - 2009

The North Star is the story of a young boy's journey through life. It is an allegory that raises questions about which road we take, and how to seek out our own unique path through life. The magical illustrations and gentle text reveal the empowering wonder of navigating our true potential. The North Star celebrates the individual. It invites us to rethink curriculum, career choices and other critical life decisions in a way that respects who we really are and our own unique gifts.

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Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room jE/Reynolds Checked In
Picture books
Somerville, Mass. : Candlewick 2009.
Main Author
Peter H. Reynolds, 1961- (-)
Item Description
Originally published: FableVision, 1997.
Physical Description
unpaged : col. ill. ; 20 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

In this story of a young boy finding his way in the world, Judy Moody illustrator Reynolds has reworked an original fable that he first published more than 10 years ago. The enchanting, lightly colored sketches show a solitary blond-haired boy traveling through a pleasant country environment and trying to follow sometimes conflicting road signs. Along the way, he encounters a cat, bird, frog, and rabbit, all of whom influence him in different ways. But it is a bright star that inspires him toward his destination: the beginning of his very own wonderful journey.  Reminiscent of other books that seem aimed more at adults than children such as Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree (1964), Robert Munsch's Love You Forever (1986), and Dr. Seuss' Oh, the Places You'll Go! (1990) this one is perfectly poised for graduates of all stripes. The ambiguity of the text may leave many in the picture-book crowd scratching their heads, but most will enjoy this simple tale of a quintessential quest.--Enos, Randall Copyright 2009 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 2-4-This well-meaning and thoughtful book showcases charming ink and watercolor illustrations; it is also somewhat derivative. The narrative opens, "A sweet breeze met the boy as he awoke to his journey. He traveled on all fours for quite some time...and he grew. And he paused." These lines are very soothing and accompanied by pictures that show a baby staring out from under a tree, crawling through some grass, and sitting cross-legged meditatively. Then the lengthy story meanders as the boy follows a rabbit down a path, wonders about a leaf and the stars, and meets a cat who advises him to start his journey so he won't "be left behind." The child replies, "Oh, but I have been on a journey...I've seen many wonderful things. Some I understand, and some I don' how that leaf floats on the water." The child continues his travels, meeting other animals who give advice and make pronouncements about the journey of life, a frog concluding that he is content to stay in his bog where he swam as a tadpole and grew into an adult. These philosophical musings, while simply stated, are unlikely to find a wide audience.-Kirsten Cutler, Sonoma County Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review

A boy on a journey gets lost when he takes a "well-worn path" instead of seeking his own way. After a bird reminds him to "follow the signs you already know," he discovers his guiding star and continues his voyage. While the simple ink and watercolor illustrations have appeal for young children, the didactic (if worthy) allegorical message won't resonate with them. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

A charming original fable, an encouraging allegory, a great gift for graduatesReynolds's reworking of a previously available title is all of these. What it isn't, however, is a successful picture book for young children. That's too bad, because the artwork is terrific, featuring an adorable, tow-headed tot who travels through a lightly sketched pastoral world encountering distractions and difficulties while learning to make his way in the world. Along the way he has to tune out the blandishments of a talking cat that seems intent on luring him back to the path of everyday expectations. The language used is simple but not always entirely clear. The text notes that "He wasn't afraid of much," which may leave young listeners wondering what the boy does fearand why it matters. They may also wonder at his isolation as well as about the motivation of the various animals. The detached tone, frequent ellipses and vague descriptions as well as the overtly inspirational author's note provide further evidence that this one is really for the grown-ups. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.