Stardust by Jeanne Willis and Briony May Smith


This picture book may appear at first glance to be about sibling rivalry but it’s really about gaining self-esteem as a girl is encouraged to believe in herself by her grandfather when her sister seems to be getting all the plaudits and consistently called a ‘star’. This use of language is a clue to what the girl eventually becomes and this is also signalled in the details in the warm pictures which convey excitement and wonder at this world and others beyond.

Each of the delightful spreads is like a world in itself whether it’s depicting life under the sea or in the rainforest or the interior of the girl’s bedroom as she dreams of the future with stars in her eyes. A particularly pleasing picture shows a diverse range of pairs of sisters engaged in activities on a section of the globe.

Jeanne Willis is the author of many great picture books, created with a number of different illustrators, notably Tony Ross, a number of which are CLPE core books.

Briony May Smith is already carving a career in children’s books, having written and illustrated Imelda and the Goblin King (Flying Eye) and illustrated a short novel The Giant’s Necklace by Michael Morpurgo (Walker).

Nosy Crow 9781788000680