Parents' Guide to

Eyes That Speak to the Stars

By JK Sooja, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 4+

Little boy learns his eyes are beautiful in gorgeous sequel.

Eyes That Speak to the Stars Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 5+

Based on 1 parent review

age 5+

Not Raciest, this is a story about insecurity.

I Disagree with the Violence & Scariness rating. It states: Violence & Scariness a little No physical violence, but the first pages include a sad and emotionally hurt Asian American boy being picked up from school, having just experienced a racist incident (a White kid at school shames him for how his Chinese eyes look).----------------------------I do not agree that there was a racist incident. A boy (race unknown) drew a picture of himself and four friends, all of which were different races and had different features. The picture showed all the boys happy and holding hands in friendship. The Asian boy was upset because he didn't think the drawing looked like him because his eyes were drawn like two lines. This was not drawn to insult, the child simply drew what he saw. This story is really about a boy who was insecure about his unique inherited features.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Joanna Ho's second picture book is just as stunning as her first. Lots about Eyes That Speak to the Stars follows the same formula as her first book. While here the main character is an Asian American boy instead of an Asian American girl, readers are treated to similarly beautiful representations of Chinese culture, heritage, and mythology. And the central, if singular, message of how special Asian eyes are continues to be reaffirming and powerful. Perhaps especially for little Asian American children everywhere, this book is important even for featuring such an Asian American family. Asian American children can immediately pick this book up and say, "Hey, that's me!" and, "That's you, Daddy!"

However, also like the first book, a lot of the main message relies upon the idea that there is a "natural" power and beauty to having the same eyes as other family members. But this idea also can suggest that biogenetic relatedness is more "natural" or better than families whose relations are not based in biogenetic similarity (that "naturally conceived" families are somehow forever more bonded, connected, genuine, or real). Thus, this book, like its predecessor, may not be a book for alternative families or adoptive families, where kids might not share physical similarities with their family or parents. There are many children's books that do focus on how the physical differences between child and parent don't matter at all.

Book Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate