Rules for Stealing Stars

By Corey Ann Haydu,

Book cover of Rules for Stealing Stars

Book description

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…

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Why read it?

3 authors picked Rules for Stealing Stars as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

When I think about magical books that talk about real-world stuff, my first thought is this incredible retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses that examines (through a magical lens) the toll of parental alcoholism.

Four sisters all have different ways of coping with the dysfunction caused by their mother’s alcoholism, but together they escape into magical worlds through their house’s closets. The youngest sister, Silly, has been left out for a long time, but she makes their magic stronger once her sisters finally let her join them.

The metaphors are so rich here—the escapism, the secrets and shadows hidden in…

From Stephanie's list on where the magic and monsters are real.

In Rules for Stealing Stars, the portal(s) are closets, tailored to suit each of the sisters. I picked this book because of these unique portals and because the “other worlds” created by the closets are irresistibly enchanting.

The author also handles with such sensitivity both the reason the sisters go into the closets in the first place (to escape the difficulties with their mother) and how they wrestle with staying in the fantastical worlds versus facing their very real problems at home. A beautiful read.

Haydu’s voice in Rules for Stealing Stars feels incredibly authentic to the middle-grade age group. The main character, Silly, walks a fine line between being childish enough to believe in magic, and old enough to begin to question her deeply dysfunctional family situation. Silly’s honest, first-person narrative beautifully expresses both the wonder of the escapist worlds to which she travels, as well as the trauma of living in a dysfunctional household. Haydu expertly weaves together this child-like voice and fantastical story with underlying themes of trauma and dysfunction to create a whimsical, yet meaningful story.

From Fiadhnait's list on with an air of whimsy.

Book cover of Wand

Landra Jennings Author Of Wand

New book alert!

Who am I?

Author Overthinker Chocolate eater Mom Cautious adventurer

Landra's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Eleven-year-old Mira wishes everything could go back to the way it was. Before she changed schools and had to quit gymnastics. Especially before Papa died. Now she spends her days cooking and cleaning for her stepsisters and Val—who she still won’t call mom and still won’t forgive for the terrible thing she did.

When a mysterious girl named Lyndame appears wielding a powerful wand, she makes Mira an offer she can’t refuse: she will grant Mira three wishes. What if magic isn’t just pretend after all? What if these wishes could fix everything? But in the quiet town of Between, Georgia, where secrets lurk and rumors swirl of strange creatures, nothing is as it seems, and everything comes at a price

Wand

By Landra Jennings,

What is this book about?


A dazzling story of grief and found family wrapped in a spellbinding fairy tale, perfect for fans of Anne Ursu and Jodi Lynn Anderson.

Eleven-year-old Mira wishes everything could go back to the way it was. Before she changed schools and had to quit gymnastics. Especially before Papa died. Now she spends her days cooking and cleaning for her stepsisters and Val-who she still won't call mom and still won't forgive for the terrible thing she did.

When a mysterious girl named Lyndame appears out of the woods wielding a powerful wand, she makes Mira an offer she can't refuse:…


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