Book Review

NAVIGATE YOUR STARS by Jesmyn Ward (Out 4/7/2020)

Rating: 4 / 5

Thank you to Scribner for the complimentary advanced copy of NAVIGATE YOUR STARS by Jesmyn Ward!

NAVIGATE YOUR STARS uses the Tulane University 2018 commencement speech given Jesmyn Ward and brings it together with illustrations by Gina Triplett to deliver a powerful message. The speech is part memoir and part inspiration, delving into the author’s history and that of her family. She encourages graduates to recognize that a degree is not an automatic ticket to success, but that each person must find their own path through hard work and opportunity.

I really enjoyed this little book and certainly its message about overcoming difficulties is especially poignant at the moment. Though our backgrounds are very different, there was much in Ward’s history that resonated with me. College was a given for me growing up, it was what one did to get ahead in life. Like me, Ward graduated college with a degree in English and had a bit of time where she wasn’t sure what came next.

Jesmyn Ward is the author of many books that I have really loved and her voice rings through in this speech. The illustrations are beautiful and capture the mood of Ward’s story, from times of hardship and grief to the triumph of finding her path.

I can see this as a wonderful graduation gift for those completing their education. As I was reading it, I especially had those in mind who are having the least normal of senior years right now that I could imagine!

NAVIGATE YOUR STARS will be out on 4/7/2020!

Reading challenges:

#ReadingWomenChallenge – a book under 100 pages

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