gaby317, September 18, 2009 (view all comments by gaby317)
A portrait of life in America on the eve of World War II, The Blue Star tells the story of Jim Glass Jr during his last year of high school. From among the well-to-do families in his small town, Jim has recently broken up with Norma Harris. Jim finds himself in the awkward position of being fascinated by his friend Bucky's girl friend Chrissie Steppe. But his friend, Bucky Bucklaw Jr. is in the Navy, surely courting Chrissie Steppe would be out of bounds.
When Jim digs deeper into the relationship between Chrissie Steppe and Bucky Bucklaw, he learns more than he'd bargained for about the Steppes and even his own family.
There is so much more to The Blue Star than Jim's attraction to Chrissie Steppe, which is what makes The Blue Star such an interesting and satisfying read. You don't have to have read the earlier book Jim The Boy to appreciate The Blue Star. The characters are fully fleshed out. Each individual struggle adds to the tension and coherence of the novel. There is enough romance, tragedy and action to make The Blue Star hard to categorize and easy to enjoy.
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Margaret Upshaw, April 8, 2008 (view all comments by Margaret Upshaw)
Not only did I return to the beauty of the North
Carolina mountains, but I learned that Jim the Boy
has become just the kind of decent, contemplative
young man the first novel suggested. Thanks, Tony
Earley. The Blue Star was even better than a reunion
with an old friend who remains every bit as enjoyable
as you remember. May the sequel come soon.
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Little Brown and Company -
"Publishers Weekly Review"
by Publishers Weekly,
"The small dramas of teenage love get caught in the crosswinds of a war in this sequel to the 2001 bestseller Jim the Boy. It's late summer 1941, and Jim Glass, now a high school senior, has an earnest, unshakable passion for classmate Chrissie Steppe. But as straightforward as his feelings are, the circumstances of his nascent romance are complex: Chrissie's family is indebted to their landlord, whose sailor son Bucky claimed Chrissie as his girl before shipping out to serve on the USS California at Pearl Harbor. Throughout Jim's fraught final year at school, he relies on the advice of his uncles, but after Pearl Harbor is bombed, they can't protect him from the war's toll. Questions of patriotism, sexuality and poverty weave their way into a narrative that's deceptive in its simplicity: the growing pains that Jim and his friends experience pack a startling emotional punch." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review A Day"
by Ron Charles, The Washington Post Book World,
"We've waited a long time for a sequel to [Jim the Boy], and during those eight years, Jim the boy has grown into Jim the young man, the sort of person you'd expect from the first novel. He's decent and contemplative, concerned about others' feelings and his own shortcomings, suspended awkwardly between adolescence and adulthood." (read the entire Washington Post Book World review)
"The deceptive simplicity of the matter-of-fact narrative inexorably draws the reader into this tender and true coming-of-age tale."
by Library Journal,
"Earley...brings to life a very appealing rural community, conjuring up a portrait of a bygone America where people conducted themselves with dignity and devoted themselves to simple virtues and values."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"A sweet-tempered, mostly successful sequel for those who like their fiction sepia-toned."
by Kansas City Star,
"[A] wonderful reminder of how we used to live."
Seven years ago, readers were introduced to the precocious ten-year-old at the heart of Earley's bestseller Jim the Boy. Now a teenager, Jim returns in another tender and wise story of young love on the eve of World War II.
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