Starry River of the Sky
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Starry River of the Sky

4.07 of 5 stars 4.07  ·  rating details  ·  2,015 ratings  ·  334 reviews
The moon is missing from the remote Village of Clear Sky, but only a young boy named Rendi seems to notice! Rendi has run away from home and is now working as a chore boy at the village inn. He can't help but notice the village's peculiar inhabitants and their problems-where has the innkeeper's son gone? Why are Master Chao and Widow Yan always arguing? What is the crying...more
Published October 2nd 2012 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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Newbery 2013
13th out of 111 books — 993 voters
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9th out of 18 books — 8 voters

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Ms. Yingling
This is one of those books that makes me feel like an AWFUL librarian. All the cool kids like it, but I found it personally painful to read. I don't know why-- I usually adore books with an Asian theme even though they are a hard sell at my school. Most commenters say this is lyrical and beautifully written, which is true, but my students never ask for lyrical books. My problem, what made me take my glasses off and scrub my face in frustration, was that not much happened, and the minute it did,...more
Barb Middleton
Taiwanese workers have been fixing the leaking hot water pipes in our apartment. Custom is to not wear shoes inside apartments, but I cringe thinking they will slice open their foot on the shards of bricks, concrete and tiles scattered on the floor. I point to the tennis shoes I'm walking around in and say, "Okay... shoes." Then I give the thumbs up. They laugh and I noticed over the course of a week them eventually wearing shoes inside the apartment. While I like this custom of removing shoes,...more
I remember when Grace Lin first started writing chapter books for kids. She'd been doing picture books (mostly for others) for years and when at last she started creating small semi-fictionalized memoirs based on her own experiences she ended up tapping into a kind of 21st century need for books with a realistic "classic" (forgive the phrase) feel. The sideways shift into fully illustrated full-color folktale-based fiction felt simultaneously like a throwback to a long-forgotten era (particularl...more
Kathy Cowley
A modern retelling of traditional Chinese stories, this book is set in the same story world as Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. It’s not a sequel (it’s set several hundred years before the other story), but it’s not exactly a prequel either, though a few characters figure prominently in both books.

The things I love about this book and the first are the same: Chinese mythology retold, that it's a story about storytelling, that young people make choices that make a big difference in their world....more
Review by Karen, intended for young readers:

I have a very important tip for you: the next time you have a cross-country flight and you’re looking for the perfect book to keep you entertained — make you chuckle, make your eyes well up with tears, make the time pass ridiculously quickly — choose Starry River of the Sky by Grace Lin.

Of course, it’s always a risk to pack just one book for a long plane ride because what if you hate it from the first chapter and you’re stuck reading the Skymall magazi...more
After seeing and thoroughly enjoying a theatrical production of Grace Lin's "Where the Mountain Meets the Moon," I was intrigued when my 9 year old daughter found "Starry River of the Sky" at the public library. She had such a high stack of other books to read first, so I decided to treat myself to this one, and I'm glad I did. "Starry River of the Sky" is a beautifully written coming of age story about family feuds, leaving home, homesickness, longing, and what one needs to learn in order to he...more
Rendi has run away from home – gone as far as he can to be away from his father, Magistrate Tiger as he possibly can. His father, hoping to become an important man, bullies everyone around him with his arrogant and dishonest challenges. His tricks and plans seem to get him what he wants, but Rendi cannot bear to be part of the deceit. Although it means leaving his mother and sister behind, Rendi’s anger at being used and discarded gets the best of him and he set off. His journey brings him to th...more
I have been eagerly awaiting this new title from Grace Lin, half-fearful that I'd be disappointed because of my high expectations for it and half-gleeful because I assumed it would transport me to a time and place far from today and allow me to forget my own cares and woes. My fears were foundless since the author does not fail to delight. I was transported to the remote village of Clear Sky where Rendi has ended up working as a chore boy for a local innkeeper. I was enchanted by Madame Chang an...more
The Styling Librarian
Feel so honored to read this book. Looking forward to sharing it with students and friends for years to come. Perfect stand-alone story with rich folktale mixture intertwined with the most beautiful story with rich character development. Cannot wait to read it again when it is officially published with all the illustrations richly in color as the treasure of Where the Mountain Meets the Moon!
There are some authors that the minute I know they have a new book coming out, I immediately pre-order it. Grace Lin is one of those authors. Not just because I love her gorgeous illustrations (I love those bright colors she always uses), which I do, but also because her stories always draw me in and make me want to be a part of her characters lives. So, when I heard about this book, I knew I would love it and I did.

Rendi is an interesting character from page one. While he is not particularly li...more
Starry River of the Sky by Grace Lin is the story of Rendi, a runaway boy, who ends up at the Village of Clear Sky, and mysteries about the moon's disappearance, Rendi's background, and various visitors and residents of the village.

This conpanion novel to Where the Mountain Meets the Moon is set a few hundred years before that book, though a couple characters are in both books. Lin adapts classic Chinese tales to serve her plot. These tales give clues to the various mysteries. These seemingly r...more
Book talk: What would you do if the moon went missing and you were the only one who could hear its cries? Rendi is surprised that no one else seems to mind the missing moon or hear its moans at night--but what can he possibly do about it? Maybe once he could have got someone to help, but now he's on his own. After being caught as a stowaway he's stuck working as a chore boy at a small inn in the middle of nowhere. He doesn't want the inn's guests to think he's crazy and the inn keeper's daughter...more
Rendi runs away from home after a bitter dispute with his father, ultimately being taken in by an innkeeper as a chore boy. As Rendi gets to know the innkeeper and his daughter and exchanges stories with the inn's mysterious guests, he is troubled by haunting moans in the night that only he seems able to hear. To make matters more perplexing, the moon seems to have disappeared from the heavens--and no one in the Village of Clear Sky appears to care. The innkeeper is far too consumed by his own p...more
I love Lin's writing. I love the beautiful stories woven together and the themes that feature in her work. My children loved noticing the connections between Starry River of the Sky and Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. We listened to this on CD, and the reader does a great job. Lessons to remember: the way to peace is forgiveness. You can choose to be fierce like a tiger or calm and matter who your parent is or what your background.

A few great quotes: "If a listener truly understands...more
I had a hard time getting into the story. Unfortunately, the characters and story didn't really draw me in and not much happened. I felt that the author was trying to add mystery, but did not execute it the way that I would have liked. I thought that story was too predictable. The author clearly used the folk tales as a metaphor for the characters. I always begin my rating of any book at a three and I rely on the author to guide that rating up or down as the story progresses. The most interestin...more
Sue Cowing
Grace Lin has done it again, but even better. In this companion book to her prize-winning WHERE THE MOUNTAIN MEETS THE MOON, she follows the same scheme of weaving traditional tales into a larger original story. This time the characters and their dilemmas are even more convincing and compelling. I turned the pages quickly to find out what would happen, then went back at leisure to enjoy the illustrations , which are, in a word, gorgeous. Some are literal illustrations of the story, but the ones...more
This book was just as legendary as Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

Storyline: Rendi ends up at a remote Village where the Moon is missing from the sky and he listens to wailing every night. Mysterious appearances arrive and the story unfolds as Rendi learns that he is part of the answer to all of his questions about life. The mixture of Chinese folklore blended with the plot was fantastic. The included guide to finding out more about the folktales used is a fantastic resource.

Red flags: None

Melissa Morton
Starry River of the Sky is about a boy, Rendi, who runs away from home in a wealthy part of the country and finds a strange comfort about the inn he ends up working for. He is worried about the moon being gone from the sky and through the stories about the village's ancestors, he is able to solve the mystery of the moon being absent from the sky. As for content, I didn't find the book very interesting. The book did have a unique layout about it, though. Within the chapters and narration are stor...more
Jessica Moden
I had a very hard time getting interested in this book, for I was not able to make any emotional connections with what the author was talking about. This book is about a young boy who travels by merchant carts and ends up in family-owned inn where he gets the job of cleaning up after the guests. Throughout the story he meets a lot of characters, all who tell of different Chinese fables from their ancestors and why things are named or look a certain way. The fables and small stories being told th...more
I cannot wait to hold the final version of this book with the color illustrations.
Truly beautiful storytelling.

"sometimes the best decision is a painful one, but it is never one made out of anger." pg 187

“when people tell stories, they share things about themselves.” pg 264

Love the metaphor: Heaven is when we feed each other. pg 192
Lorra Metko
It was amazing to me when I read Grace Lin's previous book Where the Mountain Meets the Moon how she could take folk tales from China and weave them into a wonderful story. Well, she's done it again! I think I loved this book even more than the first. The messages of family and forgiveness are inspiring.
Mar 05, 2014 Joy rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: fantasy
This is a companion novel to Lin's When the Mountain Meets the Moon. I didn't like it quite as much but I still enjoyed the read.

Rendi ends up at the Inn of the Clear Sky after a wine merchant discovers him stowing away in his cart. Master Chao, the owner of the inn, puts Rendi to work as his chore boy. Peiyi, Master Chao's daughter, also lives at the inn. The only person who comes to the inn is Mr. Shen, who does not seem to be quite right in the head.

The moon is missing, there is no rain and...more
This is a beautiful book in many respects. It is a satisfying size and weight, with beautiful illustrations and page decorations, and high-quality paper. The plot is interesting and psychologically realistic, and the fantasy aspects are seamlessly interwoven. Loved it.
Jen Petro-Roy
3.5 stars. Grace Lin's writing is simple and beautiful and I liked how the book fell together. It did seem to lack the depth of Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. I definitely didn't adore it like its predecessor. I do wish the ARC contained all of the illustrations, too.
This book gets 4 stars as an elementary-aged book (Grades 2-3, I'd say). That is all it tries to be.

Nah. Three stars. I should remember to wait a few hours or days before rating a book.
An absolutely delightful book. A very worthy companion to Where the Mountain Meets the Moon but works as a stand-alone as well. Loved it.
Those things I didn't get done today? All Grace Lin's fault. Great book!
love grace lin. she is just fabulous.
Angela Kidd Shinozaki
Beautifully written. Stories weaved together in such a way that by the end you feel quite satisfied with how everything comes together. I won't lie; it took me awhile to get hooked on this book. It starts off a little slow. But the minute the guests show up and start sharing stories, the novel starts building, growing bigger and bigger with the addition of each tale. Before I knew it, I couldn't put the book down until I finished it and then I immediately wished I hadn't read it quite so quickly...more
With all the stories and clues, I knew that I had to keep reading. Every word tempting me to go on, Grace Lin made this story entertaining but still kept us on the edge of our seat. Not knowing what happened next, you'll always be surprised with what Lin has up her sleeve. Supporting Rendi and Peiyi, their journey is a very interesting one. Nothing in this book can be considered a dull moment. From looking for the moon, to telling stories, Rendi keeps grabbing our attention, every step of the wa...more
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Starry River of the Sky 1 7 Feb 27, 2013 10:25AM  
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