The Blue Star is a story that is deceptively simple, but is actually a complex tale of growing up in a small North Carolina town on the verge of WWII.
Jim is a senior at Aliceville High School and is enjoying his new status as the one of the top guys. He has just broken up with Norma, the girl everyone is sure that he should end up with, and notices Chrissie, a new half Native American girl. Chrissie is Bucky Bucklaw’s girl, a spoiled rich kid who has joined the navy. The situation is strange as Chrissie’s family lives and works for the Bucklaw family and she is basically told she is Bucky’s girl and must wait until he returns. As she is half Native American and another man’s girl, she is unattainable to Jim, but he can’t help his feelings from deepening. A series of events, including the bombing of Pearl Harbor halfway through senior year, cause Jim to have to face new realities and have to make the journey from child to man.
I enjoyed this coming of age story. All of the characters were perfectly three dimensional beings that I could imagine meeting. I especially loved the uncles and would love to learn more about them. The town of Aliceville and the neighboring mountain were described vividly. The novel gave a perfect picture look into this town and world at this period of time directly before WWII. I loved it and would really like to read Jim the Boy. I also really want to see what Earley has in store for Jim next.
What I thought would be light hearted book took on serious issues such as racial prejudice, sexuality, guilt, and death. For a simple story, it had very deep issues.
I have a giveaway for five copies of this book courtesy of Valerie at Hachette Book Group that will end at midnight tonight. If you have not entered yet, please follow this link to the contest rules and sign-up. Good luck everyone – I think you’ll enjoy this book!