A Star Shines Through

­Eerdmans. Aug. 2024. 40p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780802856319.
K-Gr 3–Desnitskaya (On the Edge of the World) once again takes on the topic of home. It’s a special place. A girl and her family had a nice life in a city that they loved “until the war came.” Coming home from music lessons, the main character always looked for the light of a cardboard star to welcome her home in the early evening hours. After they leave their home and move to another country, everything is different; this loss of familiarity is aptly captured in melancholy illustrations with somber tones. The illustrations are especially effective in capturing the adjustment process. At first the language is indecipherable—the chaos of early days in a new place—but a few spreads later the words become intelligible. Through all the fear and the sadness, light shines through in beautiful yellow and gold tones. This title has a universality that will bring comfort to anyone forced to leave home, regardless of reason; the message is clear that while things will always be different, there is still reason to hope in the future.
VERDICT A beautiful tale of loss and adjustment; for those who have never had to leave home, perhaps a lesson in insight and empathy. Highly recommended for all collections.

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