Saturday, April 13, 2013

L is for Leo

L is for Last Minute Post  Leo

It is 6:45p.m. and I'm finally getting around to typing this post. Nothing like saving it until the last minute....

Leo Borlock from Jerry Spinelli's Stargirl is a character I know very well. Ironically, I know Leo too well to give him an adequate character analysis. Stargirl is about a high school sophomore who attends a local high school after being home schooled her entire life. She is so unique that Mica High School students don't know what to do with her. At different points of the book, students make fun of her, imitate her, shun her, and make fun of her some more.

Leo Borlock is the only student at MAHS who tries to get to know her. He eventually falls in love with her. While she's eccentric and unique, she's also a beautiful person. The problem is Leo is too insecure to follow his heart. While Stargirl doesn't care whether or not people shun her, Leo can't stand it. He ultimately makes the wrong choice and regrets it years later as an adult telling this story.

Leo is a fabulous and very realistic character because he knows what the right choice is, but he's too immature to make it. We fall in love with Stargirl through Leo's eyes and simultaneously feel the peer-pressure he feels to conform. The thing I love the most is that the entire book is set up as a flashback, and Leo is reflecting upon these events. Because of it, the reader can appreciate his mistakes and his regret for making them.

I've taught Stargirl to 7th grade students for 13 years now. Leo and I go way back. But every year I spend a good month hanging out with him (aka discussing his character with a new group of seventh graders), I appreciate him a little bit more.

Happy Saturday. I hope all A-Z Challengers enjoy the day off tomorrow.


  1. I've never heard of that book. I will have to check on it.

  2. Don't know it either but sounds interesting.

  3. Me either. But I want to check it out now!

  4. PS - You've been teaching for 13+ years? No way!

  5. I've read this book, and it's a really great read!