The Star That Always Stays gets 5 stars out of 5 from me! Anna Rose Johnson’s debut novel is a beautifully written piece of middle-grade historical fiction. In 1914 Norvia and her four siblings are thrust into life in the city with a new family. Their childhood in poverty around Lake Michigan is left behind when Ma divorces and remarries a kind, financially stable man who encourages Norvia’s appetite for novels and education. The stigma of being the daughter of a divorcee with Ojibwe heritage makes navigating high school challenging! Norvia finds strength through her faith to navigate relationships, prejudice, divorce, and high school! I pre-ordered my hardback copy from Amazon and was thrilled at the beautiful cover!
I love the references to some of my favorite classic stories as Norvia reads books like Pollyanna and Anne of Green Gables. This book is uplifting and charming while realistically addressing raw and complex themes. The characters in this story are all compelling! Through Norvia’s eyes I learned a little about the Ojibwe Indian culture and experienced a slice of life in 1914 Boyne City. My only complaint is that the ending left me wanting more. My only complaint is there are a few characters that I loved as much as Norvia and wish had more “time” on the page (especially Aylmer!)
Reviewing this book was special because this author is a member of the Author Conservatory, from the creators of Young Writers Workshop. of which I am a member. Anna Rose Johnson is an inspiration! I cannot wait to see if she writes more MG fiction. There is a need for wholesome and memorable Christian-made stories of excellent quality. I’m thankful for the authors working to fill the void! Maybe I can count myself among them one day!