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In Sight of Stars

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  778 ratings  ·  225 reviews
Seventeen-year-old Klee’s father was the center of his life. He introduced Klee to the great museums of New York City and the important artists on their walls, he told him stories made of myths and magic. Until his death.

Now, forced to live in the suburbs with his mom, Klee can’t help but feel he’s lost all the identifying parts of himself—his beloved father, weekly trips
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published March 13th 2018 by Wednesday Books
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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 ·  778 ratings  ·  225 reviews

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Larry H
Mar 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
4.5 stars, rounded up.

Klee (pronounced "Clay") worshiped his father. They shared a love for art and artists, especially van Gogh, and they spent countless hours together painting and visiting museums and galleries, and Klee loved listening to his father's stories, even the ones which were so clearly made up. He knew his father gave up his dreams of becoming an artist to have a stable job as a lawyer, but his father wants him to have the chances he never had.

His father's sudden death turns Klee's
Jeff Zentner
Jan 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book from start to finish.

It’s an achingly fierce exploration of the way the world wounds us and heals us. If you love exquisitely written coming-of-age stories that will leave you breathless, In Sight of Stars is for you. I wanted to underline every other passage.
Aimee ♥ | Aimee, Always
Whoops, I ended up not finishing this one. The choppy writing, manic pixie dream girl trope, and confusing AF narration were too much for me. At least I managed to uphold my 30-percent-before-I-quit rule.

Mini review to come closer to the release date.

[DNF @ 30%]
I've read all of Gae Polisner's books and enjoyed them all, but this is her best so far. Her characters feel like people you know (or want to know) and the structure of this book is unique and thoughtful. I can't wait to share this book in my workshops this year! ...more
Dec 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Please note that this review is written by a teacher with the intended audience of educators. I make specific recommendations for how to consider this novel for addition to curriculum, so if you don’t want to nerd out with me, skip this. 

I received an advanced reader's copy of this novel at the NCTE convention and was able to read the book in just a few sittings once I began it. I value this novel most for its reflection of real life, artistry in details and consistency in craft. The main charac
Kelly Hager
Sep 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Finished In Sight of Stars by Gae Polisner. I received a copy for review. This will be published March 13.

Klee (pronounced like clay) has been committed. We don't know why, and this book goes back and forth in time, explaining how he got there and, more importantly, how he'll find his way back.

I want to make my book club read this, because I have so many thoughts. I think teens will love this---this book really showcases the way that everything feels so viscerally important but never makes it f
Feb 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: give-aways
Excellent story! Fast paced, this book can definitely be completed in one sitting. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

Our main character Klee is brutally honest. At only 17, he has faced grief, trauma, and adversity. At the heart of the book is the idea we most often see what we want, what is easiest. The truth is so unclear sometimes. Particularly when it concerns loved ones. We can twist reality to match our ideas of our life story. The difficult part is removing those rose colored glasses and living in
Nora Baskin
Dec 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this story in an early draft and my first response was..Damn, she nailed it. Ms. Polisner captures the truest sense and expanse of a young man's emotions-- his complicated relationship with his mother, the loss of his dad, and his romantic heart aches. She also beautifully renders his descent into confusion when all three collide, and his journey to redemption. Consider this book, ORDINARY PEOPLE for a new generation of readers..it's that good. ...more
Dawn  McNutt
Dec 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received an uncorrected proof from Facebook friend and author, Gae Polisner. This review, however, is written without bias and without a complete summary because...read the book. I hate spoilers. Without giving up the plot I can say it is beautifully written with characters that are still in my mind and even made me dream of them as I napped today. The nap was necessary because I couldn't put the book down last night and stayed up until I finished it this morning after 3 AM. The subject matter ...more
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Gae Polisner's 'In Sight of Stars' was one of my most awaited books this year. I loved all her three earlier books and so I couldn't wait to read her new one.

In the first scene of the story we find Klee Alden, our narrator, opening a door and entering somewhere and he sees something inside which shocks him and something inside him snaps and he takes a knife out of his pocket and before anyone around him could do anything, he tries to cut himself in his neck. Sometime later we find him in a hosp
Feb 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018
I received a copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange of and honest review.

More like 3.5 stars.
It was good but that’s it, a quick read that help me get through a reading slump, so thank you book.

This is the story of Klee, a boy who has to start over after a suicide attempt (this is not a spoiler as it happens in the first chapter), he gets into a mental facility and then we’ll switch from his healing to his memories.

There are very important people in his life, his mom, his girlfriend a
Jennifer (JC-S)
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
‘There was a time when I felt happy and normal.’

Klee Alden is seventeen years old when the world he was comfortable in changes forever. His father, the centre of his universe, dies. He has committed suicide, and it is Klee who finds him. Klee (pronounced Clay) has explored New York City’s museums and art galleries with his father, learned about the lives and loves of great artists, experienced the magic his father could generate.

We meet Klee in a psychiatric hospital for teenagers. And, as we f
Michele Knott
Feb 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Brilliantly crafted.
So many lines I want to return to and think about. This is a book that is worthy of many rereads.
Richelle Robinson
Mar 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this story we meet Klee who cuts his neck with a knife at a party. Afterwards we are transported to past plus we see what leads up to the event. Klee was going through a difficult time with a parent passing and I honestly felt he would have done well with some counseling. I really liked that we got to see what was going on with Klee and how he’s been feeling the last year. Throughout this story there are some twists that I didn’t see coming and now certain things make sense. We also have a ro ...more
Kate Olson
Mar 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
#partner * So, so many young adult books are featuring themes of mental illness now that I start thinking I know what to expect in the genre.........but then THIS book comes along and shows me how it should be done. Polisner has written a quiet and poignant look into a teen's experiences with grief, depression and desperation, and has managed to do so with the most compassionate touch I have seen. Her portrayal of mental health professionals, therapy and in-patient treatment are refreshingly pos ...more
Sarah Donovan
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received an advance uncorrected proof version. I have read all of Polisner's books and enjoyed all of them. This book, however, feels quite different to me, stretching from young adult into adult, captivating and satisfying in a more nuanced style. There are different textual features depending on the stability of the narrator, art woven into and through the text and the plot, family, love, twists, and the grappling of all that is life. The story navigates therapy and recovery post a traumatic ...more
Samantha (WLABB)
Mar 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shocker. I read another book about grief and loss, and I liked it, a lot. My penchant for this type of book is well known, but there were so many other things I loved about this beautifully written story of love, loss, and healing.

•Pro: The writing was exquisite. Besides it being so painfully beautiful at times, it also masterfully helped me slip into Klee's mental state. In the beginning of the story, where Klee was in crisis, the writing was a little choppy, but as Klee started working through
PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
After attempting suicide, Klee ends up in a psych hospital where he must deconstruct how he ended up so desperate and figure out how to move forward. Told in two timelines, high school senior is adjusting to his father’s suicide, a move to the suburbs and increasing depression.

I didn’t enjoy the reading experience of IN SIGHT OF STARS. The story never grabbed me and I never felt connected to Klee. At times I wasn’t certain whether he was hallucinating or whether Gae Polisner’s writing was metap
Aug 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If you are looking for an incredible young adult novel, be sure to pick up, "In Sight of Stars." 

The MomAdvice Book Club was lucky enough to not only have a video chat with Gae, at our MomAdvice Reading Retreat, but she also joined us for our online book chat as well. Gae is one of those generous kinds of authors that is so giving of her time time and talks openly and honestly about her books.

If you are looking for an interactive book chat, this is YOUR GIRL.

Don't have a book club? You can join
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely adored this book. Gae Polisner always writes amazing characters, and In Sight of Stars is no exception. I also loved how the story unfolded itself to the reader, a mix of the present and the past. Polisner also deals with the important issue of mental health with beautiful grace and compassion. I think this has become my new favorite book by her. I highly recommend it.
Dec 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read the ARC of this book and I was engrossed immediately. Without giving anything away, Ms. Polisner managed to write with a level of compassion I was SURE that no one could achieve. Character driven, the story resonated for me on many levels and I was left with many emotions when I finished.. which is how I like my reads!
Apr 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of Gae’s best. It is because of stories like this that I love YA so much. Powerful!
Mandi Schneck
Mar 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I don't cry at books, I just don't. I get sad and do feel emotion for whatever is happening, but I don't ever shed physical tears. BUT HOLY WATERWORKS. This book got me. In Sight of Stars by Gae Polisner melted my icy heart and sent tears streaming down my cheeks in droves. This story follows Klee (pronounced Clay), a teen struggling with his father's suicide, who in a moment of weakness hurts himself and ends up in a mental hospital (more fondly known as the Ape Can). It's then that he's forced ...more
El (book.monkey)
Feb 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: review-arc
I have many, many things to say about this book... First I'd like to begin by saying thank you to NetGally for providing me with a pre-publication copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This book will be published on the 13th of March 2018.
Lets begin with how beautiful the cover is before we get serious. I love the sunflowers in the cover and the first thing I thought of when I saw the cover was Van Gogh, and how right I was.
This novel is about a young boy Klee (pronounced Clay) who
"For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream."- Vincent Van Gogh
I know nothing with any certainty, but the reading of each Gae Polisner novel makes me think and feel more deeply about life. I've read everything she's written and she continues blowing me away! In her latest YA book she introduces us to Klee (pronounced Clay-as in Paul Klee) a talented high school artist who is reeling from the recent suicide of his beloved father. His mother uproots hi
Beth Honeycutt
Jun 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars! This may be my favorite Gae Polisner book. I loved the information about Van Gogh and other artists as well as the tale of Green Tara. Klee was an intriguing and flawed main character that will stay with me for awhile.
Gary Anderson
Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Review coming soon. Still processing ...
Raluca Prohnitchi
Jan 28, 2022 rated it liked it
God, that was amazing. This book got me sobbing, and i think that I think I'm the only one who cried. At first things were really crazy and it was so hard to understand, but when I was like at page 34 I decided to read about van Gogh on Wikipedia and after things got so interesting. I really felt myself in Klee's because I do struggle with mental issues, things just got better with every single page I read. ...more
Jan 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved Gae Polisner’s previous book The Memory of Things , and was excited to be given an ARC of her new book, In Sight of Stars. The books are very different, but they are similar in that the characters are wonderfully drawn. The author has an amazing ability to write characters that are real, and multi-dimensional, and alive. I loved The Memory of Things because and in spite of the fact that I was brought back to the day of September 11th, the sights, the smells, the emotions. I loved In Sigh ...more
May 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In this poignant and powerful novel, Polisner tells the story of Klee Alden, a high school senior and aspiring artist who experiences profound grief after his father’s suicide. Save for flashbacks and dream sequences, the novel is set almost entirely within the confines of a psychiatric hospital where Klee is undergoing therapy. The claustrophobic setting effectively echoes the increasing suffocation of the truth that Klee slowly uncovers during his stay.

In similar fashion, the narrative itself—
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I am a wannabe mermaid and the author of THE MEMORY OF THINGS, SEVEN CLUES TO HOME and several other novels for readers young, old or in between.

Please note that, although I originally tried to assign star-ratings to my book reviews (and, thus, you will see some of my favorite books with stars), I have stopped doing so. A 3-star review, for example, can mean such different things to readers and re

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