"Both the [North Star] book and website (www.fablevisionpress.com) exploit
their formats ingeniously."
Big Apple Parent
"Stars, much like angels or anything else of celestial importance, are enduring icons to be wished upon, dreamed about, and inspired by. Now comes an enchanting fable which takes its name from the greatest star of all, the North Star.... The North Star' deserves the status of 'bookshelf essential', as it will be re-visited time and time again for a dose of inspiration."
Children's Literature - Carlee Hallman
A boy sets out on the journey of life. He sees a rabbit disappear down a path he had not noticed. The boy follows the path. A cat tells him to hurry. Arrows confuse him by pointing in different directions. When he wanders from the path, the cat tells him to go back to the path and to hurry. Hurrying only leads the boy into a swamp. There, a bird asks if he is lost. When the boy is not sure, the bird says, "Ask yourself where it is you want to go, and then follow the signs you already know." The boy looks around and discovers a star to follow. He invites a frog to come along, but the frog is happy where he is. The boy realizes that each person has his own journey. The star leads him to the top of a dune. The boy sees a row boat and looks out on an ocean. It is time to begin his unique journey. The whimsical simple line and watercolor pictures show a little blond boy. Although small children will enjoy the story, this could also be a gift book for graduates or those at times of change and decision making. Reviewer: Carlee Hallman
School Library Journal
This well-meaning and thoughtful book showcases charming ink and watercolor illustrations; it is also somewhat derivative. The narrative opens, "A sweet breeze met the boy as he awoke to his journey. He traveled on all fours for quite some time...and he grew. And he paused." These lines are very soothing and accompanied by pictures that show a baby staring out from under a tree, crawling through some grass, and sitting cross-legged meditatively. Then the lengthy story meanders as the boy follows a rabbit down a path, wonders about a leaf and the stars, and meets a cat who advises him to start his journey so he won't "be left behind." The child replies, "Oh, but I have been on a journey...I've seen many wonderful things. Some I understand, and some I don't...like how that leaf floats on the water." The child continues his travels, meeting other animals who give advice and make pronouncements about the journey of life, a frog concluding that he is content to stay in his bog where he swam as a tadpole and grew into an adult. These philosophical musings, while simply stated, are unlikely to find a wide audience.-Kirsten Cutler, Sonoma County Library, CA
A charming original fable, an encouraging allegory, a great gift for graduates-Reynolds's reworking of a previously available title is all of these. What it isn't, however, is a successful picture book for young children. That's too bad, because the artwork is terrific, featuring an adorable, tow-headed tot who travels through a lightly sketched pastoral world encountering distractions and difficulties while learning to make his way in the world. Along the way he has to tune out the blandishments of a talking cat that seems intent on luring him back to the path of everyday expectations. The language used is simple but not always entirely clear. The text notes that "He wasn't afraid of much," which may leave young listeners wondering what the boy does fear-and why it matters. They may also wonder at his isolation as well as about the motivation of the various animals. The detached tone, frequent ellipses and vague descriptions as well as the overtly inspirational author's note provide further evidence that this one is really for the grown-ups. (Picture book. 4-8)