Corrinne Averiss (text) & Rosalind Beardshaw (artwork)
When a little girl finds a fallen star underneath a tree, she decides to nurse him back to health with kindness and care. The two become firm friends but Star doesn’t feel quite at home in the hut. So the little girl decides to do what is best for her friend…
This a gorgeous story of friendship, caring for those who need us but also being able to do what is best for the people we love, even if it is hard. The rhyming text is melodic and succinct, making it a perfect bedtime story. The language oozes kindness and childhood wonder (“cosmic super-vet” being a favourite) and is a perfect match to Beardshaw’s lovely soft lines and comforting style. The colour palette in this book is wonderful, particularly the lovely night skies. Showing the Star is getting increasingly brighter as the girl cares for it is a great way to express empathy for the youngest readers. My Pet Star is a lovely addition to a preschooler’s library.
I am so delighted to welcome Rosalind to Library Mice, having been an admirer of her work for many years! Ros has illustrated many books for children. These include the award-winning Lulu series (Alanna Books) and the National Trust’s A Walk in the Countryside series (Nosy Crow). She lives in York with her family.
My favourite childhood reads
by Rosalind Beardshaw
My Pet Star was a dream for me to illustrate, I loved the story by Corrinne Averiss, on the first read. Straight away I felt excited, especially as I could create a whole little world for the girl and her star, full of the things I love. It was always the details from books that I read as a child that drew me in.
I used to visit my Dad every Saturday, on his shelves were some illustrated books I remember pouring over, time and time again.
Father Christmas by Raymond Briggs was one of them. Still to this day I revisit that book. I absolutely adore how Briggs put in so many details that made Father Christmas’s home so cosy, and that’s how I feel when I read it. I wanted the little girls world from My Pet Star to feel the same way.
Similarly, The Snowman by Raymond Briggs was another favourite from my Dad’s shelf. The love and care the boy has for the Snowman is so beautifully depicted. Inspired by this book, I wanted the girl and her Pet Star to have a similar bond, for there to be lots of warmth between them.
I was a massive fan of The Famous Five by Enid Blyton when I was young, as is my 8 year old daughter, Iris. We’re reread them (twice!) recently. I particularly loved Five Go Off in a Caravan in the series, and have always loved the idea of living in one, or a shepherd’s hut ever since. It seemed like a perfect place for the main character in My Pet Star to live, small, cosy and just the right size for her and her star…
Many thanks, Ros!
My Pet Star is out now and you can buy a copy here.
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All illustrations © Rosalind Beardshaw
Source: review copy received from publisher