Keeping Safe the Stars
“A compelling story about what it means to love fiercely.” –Booklist
Meet the Stars: Pride, Nightingale and Baby—spunky, independent and orphaned siblings united by fierce loyalty to one another, with only their grandpa, Old Finn, to care for them. That is, until he falls gravely ill and is shuttled off to a hospital far from home.
With her grandfather gone, it's up to Pride, the oldest Star, to fill his shoes and keep her family safe. Afraid they'll be taken by the state and placed in another awful group home, Pride resolves to keep their family troubles secret and take care of Nightingale and Baby by herself.
But keeping safe the Stars turns out to be a big job, and their scheme to survive alone quickly unravels. Although Pride does her best to keep the outside world at bay, including a daring adventure to reunite with Old Finn, she fears her days of keeping safe the Stars are drawing to an end, and so too, their happy days together as a family.
Publisher's Weekly Starred Review: "Choosing an unusual setting—the 1974 summer of Nixon's resignation—O'Connor skillfully tackles complex issues of truth and loyalty in a story filled with adventure, suspense, and family drama… A thought-provoking page-turner."
Kirkus Starred Review: “Family loyalty, stubbornness and love in a…totally satisfying blend.”
VOYA Starred Review : “The characters are well-developed and authentic, and their resourcefulness and fierce family loyalty are admirable. Set during the last few days of Nixon’s administration, Keeping Safe the Stars brings up questions of morality and explores the notion of trying to do what is best for one’s family. With adventure, history, and even romance, it will appeal to a wide range of young readers.”
Nominated for Northeastern Minnesota Book Award
Best Books of 2012 Book Page
“Fans of O'Connor's finely written "Sparrow Road" will find even more to admire in this warmhearted novel.” Minneapolis Star Tribune
“…it’s a marvel to watch these three children band together — and to be there when they, and Old Finn, realize that even the most fiercely independent of us will eventually have to rely on other people to make it through.” New York Times Sunday Book Review
“Keeping Safe the Stars is a compelling story that will stay with you long after you finish the last page.” Cindy Hudson Mother Daughter Book Club
“…an inspiring and hair-raising tale of three orphaned kids, the Stars, fending for themselves after their only caretaker, their grandfather, falls ill and is taken to the hospital.” Common Sense Media