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Search tags: Esther-Earl
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text 2018-08-16 21:24
Recently Read
Halloween Party - R.L. Stine
The Secret Bedroom - R.L. Stine
milk and honey - rupi kaur
Frindle - Andrew Clements,Brian Selznick
Coraline - Neil Gaiman,Dave McKean
And Tango Makes Three - Justin Richardson,Henry Cole,Peter Parnell
Julia’s House for Lost Creatures - Ben Hatke
The Sleepwalker - R.L. Stine
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl by Earl, Esther Earl Lori Earl Wayne (2014) Paperback - Esther Earl Lori Earl Wayne Earl

For anyone curious, here is my most recent read books!

176271 Halloween Party by R L Stine [3/5 stars]

I'm really torn on what to rate this book. In many ways it is outdated and problematic, but the nostalgia factor hangs on really tightly to me. I've probably read it at least a few times since I was a preteen. This read through was the slowest I've ever read one of these books; it wasn't engaging me.

Started: July 2 Ended: Aug 2

Read for R L Stine: Fear Street Challenge (June book - was behind)



The Secret Bedroom by R L Stine [3/5 stars]

I read it in one day. Some of his books are like candy, though that might be the nostalgia speaking. I felt a lot more engaged in this book. I really must say that I hated the mean girl aspect, which seems to show up in most RL's books. Also, why do the mean girls have to be redheads?! (Are we really seen as mean, stuck up people?)

Started: Aug 2 Ended: Aug 2

Read for R L Stine: Fear Street Challenge (July book - was behind)


milk and honey by rupi kaur [4/5 stars]

I started this one on a whim after getting the Scribd subscription. I listened to the author "perform" these poems with the audiobook while reading the physical copy. That heightened my enjoyment of the collection. Some are very hard to hear/read and deal with abuse, sexual abuse and other things people might find triggering.

Started: Aug 8 Ended: Aug 8


Frindle by Andrew Clements [4/5 stars]

Another book I started on a whim after getting Scribd. Nostalgic book. I enjoyed the story very much, but not sure how to rate it. Child me would probably say it is a 5 star. I'm not afraid to admit there were a couple parts that made me choke up in a happy way, especially the ending, which I adored. Is this book farfetched? Maybe, but I love that it might give kids and kids at heart a feeling that anything is possible.

Started: Aug 8 Ended: Aug 8


Coraline by Neil Gaiman [5/5 stars]

I read the 10th anniversrary copy on Scribd. The 10th Anniversary Edition does not really offer that much more, so if you already own a copy of the book, I wouldn't suggest you buy the 10th Anniversary Edition, too. Unless of course you want to collect everything Neil Gaiman (I know some people like to collect multiple copies of the same book...etc.) This is my second time reading it. I still love the story (I even love the movie more. Shh, don't tell anyone.)

Started: Aug 8 Ended: Aug 8


And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson [5/5 stars]

Ahhhh I love this picture book!

Started Aug 9 Ended: Aug 9


Julia's House for Lost Creatures by Ben Hatke [4/5 stars]

I am proud to be an adult who still loves and finds comfort in books published/meant for children. I don't think books should have age limits anyway. This little picture book was very cute.

Started: Aug 10 Ended: Aug 10


The Sleepwalker by R L Stine [4/5 stars]

I really liked this one. I read it as a preteen, but I couldn't remember the plot twist. My only reason for not giving it 5 stars is how R L Stine always writesa male characters who think they are entitled to the girl character and how the boy treated the girl when she turned him down. Very problematic element. Rape vibes and abusive treatment.

Especially, considering how she ends up getting back with that boy and they joke around with "maybe I like creepy guys." Uh...no thank you! People, please don't stay with a person who treats you how Link treated Mayra. His actions were way over the line, he even threatened her with the "you'll be sorry" line.

(spoiler show)

Started: Aug 13 Ended: Aug 14

Read for R L Stine: Fear Street Challenge (August book)


This Star Won't Go Out by Esther, Wayne, Lori Earl, with parts written by friends and family. [3/5 stars]

I don't know how to sum up my feelings about this book. I've read it twice. I started it again this "Esther Day" in her honor. It is hard to read and heartbreaking because you know the end before you start.

5 stars for my feels for Esther for sure. 3/3.5 for the layout/presentation of the book.(All the pictures and drawings were great, though.) It was confusing in parts and if I was clueless about all the references, I'm not sure I would have understood much. I relate to Esther and her Nerdfighter ways, love of Harry Potter...etc. She was a great girl that we lost too soon.

Started: Aug 3 Ended: Aug 16th

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review 2015-02-10 00:00
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl - Esther Earl,Lori Earl,Wayne Earl,John Green description

I love this kind of books. It's extremely heartbreaking but it's also so full of meanings.
I never get bored of reading such a meaningful book.


It's truly sad to know that there are a lot of sick people around the world hoping, not to buy a brand new car or a brand new iPhone! But only to get better! Only to breathe right or to sleep tight.


I think one of the most amazing things was the book's title! This book is really aptly named!
I loved Esther's character. I loved her courage and positivity. I admired her true love and passion for God. She was a true believer in spite of her misery - and that is a very hard thing to do. Esther had a pure heart, and that's why she was such a devoted believer.

“Those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will RUN and not grow weary, they will walk and not grow faint”

Esther, may you rest in peace.
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review 2014-06-13 00:00
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl - Esther Earl,Lori Earl,Wayne Earl,John Green make sure you have the tissues handy.
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review 2014-03-14 18:30
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl - Esther Earl,Wayne Earl,Lori Earl,John Green

I read this book (actually, listened to it) hoping to glean insight into John Green's thought process while writing The Fault in Our Stars--a novel that I found to be expertly written on a sentence level, but which had a great many larger problems for me (click here for that review).


This Star Won't Go Out is a sort of memoir of the diagnosis, struggle to live with illness (thyroid cancer), death, and aftermath of the death of Esther Grace Earl--a young woman who might have lived on only in the memory of her family and a handful of friends, had she not become a bit of a celebrated nerdfighter and friend of John Green. Most of the material is taken from the journals and letters of Esther, and the thoughtful CaringBridge entries of her parents. There are some after-death recollections of her by other supporting players in her life (her friends from an online/Skype group who call themselves Catitude, real world friends, her doctor) which I thought were less successful for not being written in the moment. This ending "eulogy" section of the book is not as raw and meaningful as the real-time struggle to make sense of the truly nonsensical. 


I found the book interesting as a view into the mind of a kind, thoughtful but, let's face it,very young person, grappling with her mortality before she feels she has accomplished something. What a poignant realization that your lifetime wasn't long enough to kiss a boy, let alone change the world. But Esther faced her situation with, well, grace, and with a pretty unflagging good cheer that points to exceptional character. And her parents supported her beautifully. It makes the sections where Esther feels guilt at how her illness has shaped her family life, and her shame about not achieving anything all the more profound. (She mentions being "lazy" several times, making me think that she had been sick for so much of her young life that she no longer remembered or understood the difference between illness and lack of motivation.)


The samples of Esther's writing at the end went on too long. They show true potential and a good literary ear, and in that sense hint powerfully at her lost future, but they're not engaging or complete enough by themselves to be anything but a curiosity, so one sample might have been enough (although I understand her parents' desire to give a comprehensive view of her through all of her writing).


Does This Star Won't Go Out help to understand John Green's TFiOS? I think it does, in an odd way, because I think it hints at what Green was aiming for (but missed) with his novel. I know that John had already worked as an assistant chaplain in a pediatric hospital when he was younger, and had interacted with children with cancer before, and that by the time he met Esther he was already planning or actively working on a cancer novel. (Despite the fact that Green insists TFiOS is not a cancer novel, there's just no other way to think about it.) But in a video to his brother, Hank, after Esther died in August of 2010, Green talked about Esther in terms that mimic the way he talks about TFiOS, namely, that Esther was just Esther. She wasn't a dying person, she was alive, the way we're alive. She was wholly herself, imperfect and human and loving. Similarly, Green wants us to think that the point of TFiOS is that people with cancer are just the same as us. Since TFiOS was published in 2012, it's likely that he was still working on it when Esther died, and I think, in retrospect, this is the book Green wanted to write, was trying to write--a book that wasn't a cancer book, a book that was about how a person with cancer is a normal, living person--not an inspiration to you and me. The trouble is, Green didn't succeed in writing that book. He wrote a different book--a cancer book, about kids who inspire us to savor the life we have left. Which is honestly fine as the subject of a novel. I just think it's fascinating that he continues to pitch the idea he had, rather than the book he eventually wrote.


A note on the illustrations: I listened to this as an audiobook, so I missed seeing Esther's drawings and doodles. Audiobooks should come with some sort of password that allows you to look at images online after you've bought the recording. Listen up, producers!


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review 2014-02-14 22:10
This Star Won't Go Out - Must Read!
This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl - Esther Earl,Lori Earl,Wayne Earl,John Green

I have never cried this much over a book.  The tears were running down my cheeks, my eyes were clouding over, making the words difficult to read as they all ran into one another.  I was feeling all this emotion over a book that I could not put down, it was incredible.  I was so touched by This Star Won’t Go Out, the journey of a young girl who walked among us for such a short period of time and the lives that she touched.  As Ester’s battle with thyroid cancer is explained in this novel, I felt at a loss.  As I read from many of her friends, family, doctors and acquaintances, I regret that I never got to know Ester.  I’m sorry that many of you didn’t get to meet her too because I feel if you did, perhaps all of our lives would have changed for the better.  This memoir shows us that sixteen years is too short of a life to lead but in sixteen years, you can make a difference.  Ester lived a life of faith, she lived a life of love and she lived a life of giving back. It was so remarkable that one young person can have such a powerful and encouraging influence on so many people, and some of these individuals she personally did not even get to meet.  Her positive outlook and her energy when faced with such a bleak outcome was truly amazing.  Being diagnosed at the age of twelve, she tried to keep an optimistic outlook on life and tried to have others keep that same outlook.  With constant medical issues, doctor visits and procedures, Ester was a fighter.  Just writing this review brings tears to my eyes as she truly is one inspiring individual because that is who she wanted to be. She didn’t do it for fame and she didn’t do it for show, she did it for herself.  There are parts in the book that made me laugh as I the read the journals, the letters from friends and other materials that make up this 431-page book.  I am in awe at everything that this book contains and the quality of the book.  Photos, sketches, journal pages, letters and stories on thick paper outline Ester’s courageous war with her disease. Everyone should read her book; she gives you hope and inspiration. 

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