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By the Stars

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4.18  ·  Rating details ·  134 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
Deep in the alcoves of Cal Morgan's mind is an unexpected and intriguing past. Recollections of growing up a farm boy during the Great Depression, learning to fox trot in the largest ballroom in America, and serving as an infantry soldier in World War II are fragments of his memories. But perhaps above all, a once-in-a-lifetime love story is seared in his soul, reminding u ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published March 8th 2016 by Cedar Fort Publishing & Media
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Katie W
Dec 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I love what the author says at the end--everyone has a story to tell. My life seems boring in comparison to how amazing this story is. Based on a true story, By the Stars, is full of emotion, miracles, love, and hope.

Cal is just a typical young teen when Kate, a new girl, captures his attention. Completely out of his league, he's surprised when years later, he feels that she's the only girl for him. Following these characters through LDS missions, busy social lives, World War II, and more is ext
...more
Lisa  (Bookworm Lisa)
This is a very moving story. I was touched by the trials of Cal and Kate as they tried to figure out what they wanted with their lives.

The majority of the story is set during WWII. Cal was away from his home and family for three years serving a mission for his church. He came home and was immediately drafted. During his short period home he reconnected with the girl he had loved from afar as a young boy and teen. Their courtship was quick and intense, but war has a way of leaving the future unce
...more
Emilee
Aug 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Inspired by a real life story, this novel really touched my heart. The love story is so sweet. I fell in love with Cal and his humble and loyal personality. Kate is a darling character who loves life. The author really brought to life the war-time era. The war scenes were very hard to read but I am so glad I did. I have a greater appreciation for the men who fought for America's freedom than ever before. Cal is a true American hero!

I received a complimentary copy of this book; all opinions in t
...more
Mindy
Nov 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
By the Stars is the beautifully told story of Cal and Kate. Cal loved Kate since the 8th grade, and always admired her from afar. When they did "meet" again, I loved the progression of their relationship. I loved how Cal saw Kate, really saw her. Not only for her beauty but for the type of person that she was. Cal is sent away many times. First with his mission before they courted, then a second time when he is called to war. I loved seeing Cal's character grow through these experiences. I enjoy ...more
Sydney
Mar 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Lindsay B. Ferguson’s novel By the Stars is a unique and delightful read based on the life of Cal. It is an inspiring WWII romance novel. The story follows Cal through his life as he grows up, learns hard work from the farm and from serving an LDS mission. It also shows a beautiful romance with a grade-school acquaintance, Kate. As Cal goes off to fight in the war he must rely on God to survive. Cal and Kate write letters while he as away at war, as it pulls them apart and pushes them together, ...more
Melanie
Apr 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Cal meets Kate in the eighth grade and quickly realizes she's out of his league. He watches her from afar for several years. He sees her again right before he leaves on a three year mission but she's so popular and pretty that he just knows she'll be married before he comes home. He's surprised to see that she's still around when he comes home and they form a friendship that turns into more. When he heads off to war, Kate doesn't give him a reason to think she'll be waiting for him when he gets ...more
Emmy
Lindsay Ferguson transports us into a the war-torn time of World War II. This book, inspired by a true story, tells a simple yet truly inspirational story of Cal, a simple farm-boy from Utah. As Cal states-his story all revolves around one person, a girl. The story begins with the first time he meets Kate while in 8th grade, the story then quickly jumps in the future when Cal is about to leave to serve as a missionary. A chance encounter with Kate, leads to him finally getting the chance with th ...more
Nakesha Brown
Mar 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
My Review: This book totally surprised me. The fact that is was inspired by a true story made it that much more touching. Cal's story is interesting alone, his mission work, his family farm life, his fight to survive during World War II then you add the romantic aspect with his interest in Kate. Their story was amazing. It wasn't typical. Of course, you know they have to end up together from the first introduction but their journey wasn't easy.

I was intrigued by all the detail of Cal's time in
...more
Aimee (Getting Your Read On)
Historical Fiction is one of my favorite genre's. I love traveling back in time to places and events that helped shape our world. This is a simple story of an ordinary man who accomplishes extraordinary things just because of his goodness. This book is inspired by a true story and I loved reading the afterword by the author.

We take a journey back through Cal's life starting with events from his eighth grade year in school. Cal is a small town farm boy who works hard alongside his family. He is
...more
Tricia
Aug 02, 2017 rated it liked it
Love that this is based on a true story. Cal certainly had an amazing life. But the pacing of this novel was very uneven and the editing was terrible. A date read 1945 when it should have been 1944, quite instead of quiet, etc.
Paul
Dec 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Let me start by saying I enjoyed this story. I read it in two weeks, which is quicker than usual for me for a 311-page book. It was a good story, and it was the dream of every young person during the Second World War that did not come true for many – that the person they wed would return to them. It’s also a great book club book, and the author helpfully includes some discussion questions at the end for that purpose.

While it was an enjoyable story, to be sure, it says it is based on a true story
...more
Robyn Echols
Mar 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
What a delightful romance, and a testament that good things come to even ordinary people. Cal was not considered among the popular crowd. He missed out on a lot of frivolous fun because of his long hours spent working on the family farm, a mundane but essential family business. That put him out of the path of the popular social group. Kate, a girl he meets and befriends when she is assigned a school locker next to his, soon goes on with her life as if Cal doesn’t exist. He admires from afar, bu ...more
Patti
Aug 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book caught my attention more than once at the bookstore. A beautiful cover and the tagline ‘inspired by a true story’ was enough to spend my special coupon.

It was not a disappointment! I enjoyed this touching story of a love that evolved in different ways. At first it was young admiration for Cal, just an 8th grader, when the new girl showed up at school one day. Kate, the bubbly new girl attracted attention from everyone. Cal’s chance would not come until years later when WWII had many yo
...more
Mandy Al-Bjaly
Mar 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
By the Stars, by Lindsay B. Ferguson, which is inspired by a true story, follows the life of Cal Morgan, a Mormon farm boy from the small town of Crescent, Utah.

An elderly Cal is telling his story to a neighbor (the author of this novel, actually), and decided to start his story with a girl named Kate Clayton. He met her in eighth grade, and loved her his whole life.

The book follows him through high school, a relationship with another young woman, his three-year mission for The Church of Jesus C
...more
Meagan Myhren-bennett
By the Stars
By Lindsay B. Ferguson

A once-in-a-lifetime love,
a raging war,
and a promise...

From the moment he first saw her Cal Morgan knew Kate Clayton was special. She was his ideal as he went through school. But Kate was beyond him, too beautiful, too popular, too perfect for a farm boy. But he had something to offer that no other man had offered Kate. He offered her friendship and in return he got to know the heart of the young woman who captured his.

Kate is determined to never fall in love, b
...more
v
Feb 10, 2017 added it
Shelves: 2017, ww-2
Is starts in a classic way; shy farm boy Cal, adores the popular new girl Kate, from afar while she takes no notice of him. But three years after school when their paths cross again, there is a spark. Their friendship quickly becomes something deeper. And just as they start to realize they want a future together, the dark clouds of WW2 threaten their dreams. Cal must leave for the war and put his trust in God that he'll survive to return to Kate.

This may sound like a simple love story, but it s
...more
Jessica
Mar 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
To start, this book was a lot longer than I was expecting it to be—over 300 pages. Some sections probably could have been cut to make it a little bit shorter, but I never felt like it was lagging. I was quite impressed with the author for pulling that off with such a long book. Just know going into it that it's a longer read, and you should be fine. I didn't know that, and I still enjoyed it.

I want to add a little bit of caution for future readers. This is a romance, but it's also a war story. T
...more
Cathy
Mar 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I was amazed by just how much I LOVED this book! I was sucked into Cal's story from the very first page and what made it even better for me was that it is based on a true story. What?! There's really a person that all of this crazy stuff happened to?

I loved the way it starts as a flashback, with an unknown person asking an old Cal about his life. But the whole story is shown through Cal's eyes and you feel as though you were there and lived it with him. I loved the way that he knew at once that
...more
Kendra
Mar 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This new book by Lindsay Ferguson called By the Stars was a beautiful story, the kind that I could not put down. Having this be Lindsay's first novel she's ever written I was completely amazed at the details, the writing style and the amazing story she told. This book is inspired by a true story about a boy named Cal and a girl names Kate. The book starts out when they meet in the 8th grade. Cal, as shy kid , and Kate the new outgoing popular girl. As much as Cal like Kate, things just don't see ...more
Brittanydaw
Mar 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
As I opened the book, “By the Stars”, I knew I would find a captivating story, but it was so wonderful to find that as I turned each page I was more and more pulled into the book. As the story develops I was wrapped up in the progression of Cal’s interest in Kate and then their eventual love story. Not being a huge romance fan, I actually loved this story because it was TRUE. It made you believe in the reality of true love and that it can be found! Delving into the history of his involvement in ...more
Lori
My favorite genre is Historical Fiction and this is exactly the kind of gem I love to find -- interesting history where I feel like I’ve learned new insights, a positive message and a romance to boot. I quickly found myself wrapped up, wanting to know Cal and Kate’s story, which is even more fun knowing the events are based on a true story. I found the section when Cal serves in the war fascinating and learned things about what it was like to serve as a soldier in the pacific during WWII I had n ...more
Louise Pledge
Sep 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I was really excited (not to say surprised) to win a copy of this book, and that excitement was not the least bit dimmed by reading it. Not only is it a very tender and special love story, but I so enjoyed reading about the time period.... a time in which I was alive and have memories of. I, especially, enjoyed the Utah memories... places, events, etc, having grown up in that great state.

And, although, I'm a history aficionado, I learned more about the Second World War than I was aware of, espe
...more
J. Weston Daw
Mar 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
By The Stars is fantastic book that is inspired by a true story. It takes place in Crescent, Utah before and during WWII. In the beginning Cal meets the girl of his dreams, Kate Clayton. Years later he finally gets a chance to court with her but is soon shipped off to war. He must survive if he is to come home to her, and his family. By The Stars had a great description of what was going on and really made me feel like I was experiencing WWII. It truly amazed me that from when they were in eight ...more
Kristy
Apr 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book was such a fun easy read, but informative at the same time. I love historical fiction, and I love reading true stories and this was the perfect mix of both worlds for me. Knowing that it was inspired by a true story I found myself trying to decide which parts were real and which ones fiction, I thought I had a few of those figured out until the end in the authors notes when she explains that the unbelievable parts were really true! I loved that. What an amazing story, of what people co ...more
Emily Call
Mar 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I knew from the beginning that I would enjoy this book, but I didn't realize just how much. Such a fun read. I really enjoyed the author's writing style. I loved the clean romance. I live in Utah so it was fun to picture in my mind the scenery while reading. It really made me appreciate all those who have fought and currently fight for our freedoms. I couldn't help, but think of stories of my own Grandpa, who fought in WWII. It made me realize just how much these men went through. I highly recom ...more
Sally
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-on-kindle
One of the things that intrigued me with this book was that, though fiction, the majority of it was based on real life experiences. I appreciated the author's notes at the end which delineated what was factual and what wasn't. The enduring love story between the two main characters was inspiring; the events and consequences of World War II were sad and sometimes difficult to read. I would have rated this book 5 stars except for several typographical/grammatical errors in the Kindle edition.
4.5
...more
Courtney
Feb 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautifully written historical novel. It had everything I want in a good book: romance, drama, and action. The author paints a vivid picture of what life was like during World War II. I was fascinated by the first-hand account of a soldier fighting in the war and have a much greater appreciation for how horrible it must have been. I loved the letters written between the two main characters and seeing how their relationship developed and endured through hardships. This is an uplifting s ...more
Kaye
Sep 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful story worth every second spent reading! Combining a classic love story with historical facts is always a winner, and "By the Stars" does not disappoint! Following the story of Cal and Kate’s courtship through the tumultuous years of WWII, you will laugh, cry, and celebrate this endearing couple as they share their struggles and Cal’s desire and determination to survive horrific events. Knowing that this is based on true events that actually happened makes it that much better! I didn’t ...more
Jessica
Jul 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
I'm a sucker for WWII love stories and this one will be with me for a long time. I loved Cal's character! He was kind and straightforward. Nothing flashy but steadfast in his love and obligations. A true everyday hero. Cal and Kate's love story had me in tears for good reasons. I like that his war experience was covered but not obsessed over. Just an all over great story and that it's true made it even more enjoyable.
Julie
Mar 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wwii
Riveting historical romance

Amazing story, made even more amazing by the fact that it's largely a true story. I couldn't wait to see how Cal and Kate's story ended. Perfect clean read for those who are enthralled with life during WWII, like me.
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Lindsay has been immersing herself in stories since her childhood days of sneaking a flashlight into her room and staying up reading The Babysitters Club series way past her bedtime, writing spinoffs of The Twelve Dancing Princesses, and imagining herself in fascinating, far-off places. She still dreams of traveling the world one day, and finds getting lost in a good book almost as absorbing as pe ...more
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