Ever since his mother died, Kyro and his father have worked as Star Shepherds, returning fallen stars to the sky. But one day, stars begin falling in clusters more frequently than ever before, and when Kyro’s father goes to report this he doesn’t come back. Kyro must find out who is behind the destruction before the creatures that the stars guard against return for good.
I love children’s books that have layers of conflict, especially when some are grounded in reality and others aren’t. The stars falling is a very real problem in Kyro’s world, especially since failing to return them to the sky has dire consequences. But in his journey to putting the sky back to normal, Kyro has to deal with his father’s disappearance and the way he’s been morning his mother’s death. In between the fantastical problems he faces are these very real moments of struggling with who his father became after his mother died.
A very enjoyable thing about this book is the fact that the mythology about who hung the stars doesn’t turn out to be a lie. Too many times, characters go on long trips to find the figures of their stories to help them only to find that they were never real. I think it’s important that stories exist where the characters aren’t totally disappointed by the figures of their mythology. As realistic as it may be for figures of legend not to live up to their description, there’s a kind of hope that comes with getting what you were looking for. Overall, this book did a fantastic job of balancing disappointment in parents with fulfillment of childhood stories.
Yours in love and literature, Page.
Content warning(s): fear, violence, death
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