Star Child: Joyful Parenting Through Astrology by Briana Saussy

Star Child is a fun, light read that introduces astrology to the lay, with a particular focus on reading birth stars for children. Based on your child’s sun sign, what are the key personality traits they are most likely to develop? How will they do in academics? How are they with friends, play, and social situations? Are they more creative? Are they more athletic? What will be the best extracurricular activities to introduce to your child based on sun signs?

Briana Saussy is the author of Making Magic: Weaving Together the Everyday and the Extraordinary, a storyteller, writer, teacher, spiritual counselor, and ritualist dedicated to the field of Sacred Arts. She leads community rituals and ceremonies, is a professional astrologer and tarot reader, and most notably, is a general practice spiritual counselor. Basically, you can go to her for pretty much anything and everything magic and spirituality related.

Saussy wrote this book with two objectives, as set out in its Introduction, and both objectives center around rectifying glaring problems in conventional astrological practice.

The first is to simplify “needlessly complicated, jargon-filled books, websites, and teachings” that inundate you with a “big headache” of “arcane details.”

The second objective of this book is to restore magic to the world of astrology. Modern astrology, notes the author, has been stripped of its magical roots, and “‘magic’ has become a dirty word.”

The chapters, broken down by zodiac, also gives you instructions on exercises to do with your child keyed to horoscopes. There are short paragraphs on the ascendant and moon signs, but the main focus is the sun.

This is a delightful easy-to-follow handbook to have at a baby shower for a conversation starter or in any setting where parents of young children will gather.

I love that the book begins by recommending you to look up, like literally, physically look up and stargaze. I’d add to or dovetail Saussy’s recommendation with this: everybody’s got a smartphone these days. There are these free apps you can download that will show you exactly which constellations are where in the skies directly above you, where the planets are and in what signs, wherever you are (I think it’s got a GPS tracker thingie as part of the programming). This is, in short, looking at a sidereal chart in real time. It’s very cool and you’ll be startled at how quickly you pick up astrological concepts by simply adding this exercise to your studies.

The early chapters give you the fundamentals– what is the ascendant sign, what are the astrological correspondences for the moon, all about signs, houses, and planets, angular aspects, etc. Right after those fundamentals, you jump right into a chapter by chapter breakdown of sun sign personalities and how to parent children of those sun sign personalities.

Here are a few examples from the book. The Aries child is bright, enthusiastic, and fun. The story used to exemplify Aries is Jack and the Beanstalk. Aries children tend to be drawn to stories about war, conflict, and soldiers, or military themes. (I can see where the astrological deduction came from– the Mars rulership over Aries.)

The Taurus child, for instance, is going to be strong in economics, fashion, and money management. Yep, this is something I talk about, too, in terms of what corresponds with Taurus, though I don’t personally limit it to sun signs. Taurus midheaven can endow someone with potential for success in these paths, too. Virgo children tend to be Straight-A students and teacher’s pet.

We’ll read stories about Santa Muerte in the Scorpio chapter. Scorpios tend to have strong addictive tendencies and often like to go where angels fear to tread. Capricorn kids are grounded and able to navigate deep thoughts. Aquarius is the precocious one, though these children tend to be shy and awkward. Aquarius infants tend to have erratic sleeping schedules.

Of course I’m going to make a beeline for the Libra chapter since I’m a Libra. Libra children tend to possess a great deal of social grace. (Well. Smiles. Who am I to disagree with that?) We’re loving, prioritize relationships, and enjoy conversing about politics and current events.

I really like the organization of the book here. Each chapter opens with the myth or fable that’s going to inform your understanding of that zodiac sign personality. Then you get a section on the personality attributes associated with the sign, then a section on how well such a child socializes, titled “Friends and Play,” a section titled “Academics,” then “Physical Activity,” “Art and Creativity,” what “Extracurricular Activities” will be good for your child, “Technology,” “Sleeping and Waking,” and then “Discipline.”

After that you get some thoughts on the sign’s Polarity, what that means, the sign as your ascendant, as your moon, and then a few recommended activities to do with a child of that sun sign.

I did have a teensy tiny gripe with the print quality. Above left is a random page from a book I plucked off my bookshelf. Above right is my copy of Star Child. The publisher went with an off-white almost cream paper and kind of a faint or low contrast print type.

My eyes in my 20s would not have complained, but pushing 40, and with my bad eyesight, I have to confess that reading this book page after page tired out my eyes. I had to stop every so often and look away. Ultimately, I don’t think it’s a big deal, because you would use Star Child as a reference manual anyway; it’s not intended for you to read from cover to cover in one sitting. Plus, if it’s really going to be a problem for your eyesight, get the Kindle e-book version. So it’s all good. But just wanted to point out the low contrast printing that could put a strain on some eyes.

With Star Child’s premise, though, it’s perhaps worth noting that this book is written for the casual astrology-enthusiast, the New Age spiritualist parent who on a first date will ask you, what’s your horoscope sign.

It’s based entirely on the concept of sun signs, with a secondary afterthought to natal moons and ascendants. The academic astrologer who is engaged in fiery debates on midpoints and calculation of Hermetic Lots might not get as much mileage out of a book that presumes as a given that sun signs can determine an individual’s personality.

When reviewing a book or a deck, I try to think about who it’s for– who is its target audience. Star Child is the book I see for a group of feminine-oriented parents with small children gathering together at a potluck, picnic, or ice cream social, passing this book around as they delight in how accurate the profiles are of their kids. Those who grew up swearing by the horoscopes section at the back of Cosmo and Seventeen are going to be the parents who fall in love with this book.

Is it accurate? In the context of the book’s objectives, yes, I believe so. I think if you’re into sun sign astrology, then you’re really going to love this book. It’s not just for reading up on your children, but it also pertains to self-analysis. You can reflect on your own childhood and reconnect with your inner child as you read this book.

This book falls into the category of modern spirituality, for those who buy self-help books from the mind, body, spirit section. It’s useful, and a resource that you can revisit not just for your own children, but your nephews and nieces, and your friends’ children as well.

It’s fun. It’s entertaining. I enjoy reading the personal parenting-and-astrology anecdotes by the author. I loved reading the tales and mythology from different cultures that Saussy connects to certain sun signs.

As far as the two objectives of the book, Saussy absolutely delivers. Both are achieved, for sure. There is almost no jargon in this book. It’s easy to read.

You can know nothing about astrology, pick up Star Child, and get a lot out of it. It also reinstills a little bit of that idealist’s belief in magic. It encourages magic and ritual, even from a rational-based psychological standpoint. Star Child is an engaging, entertaining supplement to your arsenal of parenting how-to guides.

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FTC Disclosure: In accordance with Title 16 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations Part 255, “Guides Concerning Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising,” I received this book from publisher for prospective review. Everything I’ve said here is sincere and accurately reflects my opinion of the book.

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