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Hidden Among the Stars

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  1,235 ratings  ·  342 reviews
From the award-winning author of Catching the Wind, which Publishers Weekly called “unforgettable” and a “must-read,” comes another gripping time-slip novel about hidden treasure, a castle, and ordinary people who resisted evil in their own extraordinary way.
The year is 1938, and as Hitler’s troops sweep into Vienna, Austrian Max Dornbach promises to help his Jewish friend
Paperback, 407 pages
Published September 2018 by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
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Melanie Dobson Thanks, Chris. It's a time-slip mystery like Catching the Wind, but it's a stand-alone book.

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4.25  · 
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 ·  1,235 ratings  ·  342 reviews

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Kylie D
A wonderful story that sees Callie, a bookstore owner in small town America, being given an old copy of Felix Saltern's classic children's book "Bambi". Inside she finds the original owner's name, Annika, and also a list amongst the pages, written in German. The list seems to be of valuables such as ruby bracelets, candelabras and the like, but why are they in an old children's book? And who exactly was Annika?

We go back in time to Austria in 1938, where Annika is a caretaker, along with her fat
Jan 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you like historical fiction, or WWII, or a slightly romantic story, or duel time lines. Hidden Amoung the Stars is the book you have been looking for.

It is the story of Annika Knopf, the daughter of the caretaker to Schloss Schwansee which is owned by the family of Max Dornbach. Max considers Annika like a little sister, but Annika sees Max in different eyes, as the boy she wants to marry. While cleaning the castle Annika comes across a deeply hidden family secret, one that could ruin Max.

Carrie Schmidt (Reading is My SuperPower)
“There’s always a cost for standing up against evil…”

First, one of my favorite elements of both the past and the present storylines is the significant role of children’s books in the plot. Two books in particular are key to the characters and the poignant tone of the story, but the whole contemporary thread is really a love letter to the power of children’s stories – and our memories associated with them – to anchor us and remind us about what’s important in life. I have always wanted to do what
Andrea Cox
FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley. A positive review was not required. These are my honest thoughts.

“Fear… was a curious thing. Motivating some to hurt and others to heal.”

This theme of fear causing one to hurt or heal others was present and captivating throughout. It definitely got me thinking deeper as I advanced through the chapters.

The complexities of this exquisite time-slip story were numerous yet not difficult to follow. I was thrown off a teensy
4.5 stars
A solid WW2 story with dashes of contemporary and plenty of emotional moments.
I found that I was more captured by the historic characters (after all, they were the ones in danger) than the modern ones, though Callie and Charlotte weren’t unsympathetic by any means. Annika at first repelled me by her attitude (not quite sure why, except of how she was convinced her life was bad, but we have the comparison to Luzi’s lot and see how much worse it could get)—so for me I loved that she grew
Heidi Chiavaroli
Mar 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
With great skill and grace, Melanie Dobson weaves the past and present together in a beautiful story of love that goes far beyond the superficial. Genuine to the core, Hidden Among the Stars captures the painful plight of Austrian individuals beneath the Nazi regime and blends them seamlessly with equally-compelling present day characters, who, amidst their own turmoil, seek answers from the past. A master at storytelling, Melanie leaves readers with an unpredictable and completely satisfying en ...more
Such a tender, poignant, powerful story! I think this one will haunt me. The Holocaust storyline made me think of all those who sacrifice with little recognition so that others may live. How easy it is to feel unseen & unknown. Yet as the character I appreciated most learned, though the earth may not contain the happy ending we long for, we are never alone. Never forgotten. Never left without hope. And in eternity, all will be fulfilled and made right. The present day story reminded me that ...more
Jan 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Public library copy. First read of this author. Have opposing opinions of this book, a love-hate type of thinking. Let me explain.

First, it took more than a few pages to get into, and to wrap my head around the points of view, which seemed to multiply. Personally, I think the book is written from the all-knowing narrator point of view, but its format suggests otherwise. But I'm not a writer, so what do I know?

Once I got into the story and characters I was hooked, I was there, and often wished I
Jan 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
I love how the author took historical details she learned over the years combined with those gained from a backpacking trip across Europe to create the beautiful tale found in Hidden Among the Stars. Such a lovely blend of fact and fiction.
Rachel McMillan
Jun 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
A beautifully romantic world (in all senses of the word) is crafted with Dobson's pragmatically lovely style. 1930s Austria--from opulent Vienna to the wooded sea-side Halstatt, spired with castles and surrounded by alps--- are a portrait in immaculate grace tested by the onslaught of war.

The treasures hidden in the pages are of grand historical interest and I couldn't wait to seep deeper into the world Maximillian will fight (with his allies) to uphold. For as long as there is art and history,
Beth Erin
Sep 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Full review on

Hidden Among the Stars is crafted with emotional depth, authenticity, and artistry! Everything about this story is beautifully intricate from the characters and their backstories to the intimate depiction of history and breathtaking landscapes. Timeless themes of love, faith, and family make this story a must read for all!

This story, these characters, and the inspiring message between these covers touched my reader heart in a way that few stories do... deep, w
*I received this book to read from Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts in this review are my own.*

"Please smile, Luzi."

And with Max's words, I know why I allowed myself to pick up another war story and be pulled through the tears and pain of those terrible years in history. I always finish a beautiful book like this one with a gut feeling. How would I have coped in that time? How do I deal with wrong things in front of my right now? It's interesting to c
Jan 26, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adult-fiction
The books from this historical time period are difficult to read, and I would suppose, even more difficult to write. The injustices inflicted upon human beings reveals a dark side of our existence as a species that is disheartening to see but necessary to confront if we are ever to bridge the divide.

While I have read several books centered around this era of human history, I have no direct link to anyone who was forced to navigate these swirly waters of fear, tumult, and pain. With that being sa
Carrie Turansky
Nov 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I listened to the audio version of Hidden Among the Stars and was so very touched by this WW2 story. Melanie Dobson did an outstanding job bringing that era to life and weaving it together with a modern story. The characters became very real and that made me eager to listen hour after hour. Very well written and narrated. Highly recommended!
Lynn Spencer
4.5 stars I hate that I even have to say this but since I read a lot of romance and I've encountered some questionable things there, I feel the need to point out that in this book, the Nazis are CLEARLY the bad guys.

Now that being said, I probably should also point out that this book is really more historical fiction than romance. It's a good read, though, so stick with me in spite of the caveats.

This book is a dual timeline story, and both timelines had compelling plots. In the modern day, Call
This excellent novel about family ties, love, literature, and treasures was well written and had excellent characters. It contains two stories from two different times: current day America/Austria and World War II Austria. There was so much insight into human nature in this novel as well as a great deal of character growth. Usually, with dual timeline novels I have one story line that I like more than the other due to its greater depth, but Melanie Dobson blew me away with this novel by devoting ...more
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Emotions engaged, tear-ducts drained -- five tissue box alert! What an incredibly moving story! I was as riveted by the contemporary story as I was by the historical one. And the way Dobson shifts between the two -- heart-in-throat moments that leave a reader reeling and, bam, we're in another time and place with barely a moment to catch our breath before we're holding it again. Truly stunning!

Callie (present day heroine) is full of bookish delight. Known as the Story Girl for her rousing story
Sep 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Hidden Among The Stars by Melanie Dobson is both a fascinating and a horrifying Christian contemporary and historical novel. It has dual timelines of 1938 Austria and present day America. It covers the most evil and brutal periods in history as the Nazis march into Austria. Characters and the reader get caught up in the depravity. There are no levels to which man will not sink to do evil. The reader is reminded of the famous words of Edmund Burke "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil ...more
Fiction Aficionado
“Some books, I think, can be like cats. No matter where they’re sent, they have this uncanny ability to find their way back home.”

This is the story of a book that finds so much more than its way back home. And if, as Callie Randall says at one point, tears are one of the greatest tributes of all, then I spent the last hour of this book paying it immense tribute. I cried anew for the atrocities committed under Hitler’s regime, I cried for the injustice, the cruelty, and the loss, and I cried for
Jodie Norquist
Nov 03, 2018 rated it it was ok
First off, there was much I enjoyed at first about this book - the plot, the characters, the writing. I loved that Callie had a bookstore and classic children’s books were featured prominently in this book. It wasn’t until I was nearly finished with the book when I discovered it was considered Christian historical fiction and I realized what bothered me about this book.

The author detailed the feelings and thoughts about faith when it came to the Gentile characters, but where were the Jewish tra
Jan 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
An enthralling work that brings history to life and glorifies a love of literature. I enjoyed it.
There are many books about WWII and to make another book on the subject stand out it has to bring something unexplored. What this book brings is an “ownerless treasure” and encrypted messages to record what belongs to whom. Encrypted messages were also used by partisans, they had to be creative in finding new ways of communication, be it through stamps or words inserted in poems. (Explored in the book The Lost Letter by Jillian Cantor).

“After the annexation of Austria in 1938, the Nazis began ex
Jessica Baker (A Baker's Perspective)
The author pretty much had me by the book blurb on this novel. I love learning (yes you can learn even though you're reading fiction!) about different time periods, and happen to be fascinated with the time period that Hitler was around. The point of view that was presented in this story - Max and Annika mainly, was amazing. It's men like Max that make you smile, with their strong exterior and soft heart. In a time that was full of violence, persecution, and evil, this story reminds us that ther ...more
Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
I'm an avid WWII Historical Fiction reader and I was drawn to this book because it deals with lost Jewish relics that the Nazis stole during their occupation.

There are two story lines, one during WWII and the other in modern day but I found the story during WWII much more compelling. Callie, in modern day, was a sweet main character but there wasn't much tension in her part of the book. There is a bit of romance that is dangled for the reader, but it mainly stays in the background which I appre
Amber Stokes
Dec 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I've read a few of Melanie Dobson's books, and this is my favorite so far! In the contemporary story line, the initial setting of a children's bookstore is whimsical and safe, and the latter setting is haunting and romantic. I enjoyed following Callie's progress as she seeks out answers with tenacity and subtle hope. As she faces new challenges, she is skittish and yet strong in the love of others.

The historical story line is so compelling and heartbreaking. I will say that, while the back cover
Carla Johnson-Hicks
4.5 Stars rounded up. I have been reading a lot of historical fiction surrounding WWII, so when I saw reviews popping up for this book, I decided it would be one that I would enjoy. I am very glad I made that decision. The story is about the plight of the Austians after Hitler marched in and took over the country.

Callie is a bookstore owner in small town America. When she receives an old copy of Bambi, written by Austrian Felix Saltern, she carefully looks over the book. Not only does she find t
Library Queen
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019, library
I guessed this was gonna be a sad book. I was right. But it was also beautiful, with some gorgeous writing. 4.5 rounded up to 5.
Maggie Boyd
I know whenever I pick up a novel about World War Two that I will most likely be reading a story that has a lot of heartache and sorrow in it. I hadn’t, however, expected Hidden Among the Stars to affect me quite as powerfully as it did. A haunting, atmospheric tale of love and loss, this book will stay with you long after you have finished the last page.

Callie Randall might tell you she’s happy with her life, but that would be a lie. After her fiancé cheated on her and left her brokenhearted, s
Amanda Geaney
Sep 03, 2018 rated it liked it
Hidden Among the Stars is the story of a children’s bookstore owner who receives an early edition of Bambi: A Life in the Woods for her 30th birthday. From the moment Callie notices the handwritten list hidden in the text, she begins to make inquiries about the original owner. Together she and college professor Josh Nemeth are drawn into a mystery spanning back to World War II and the Nazi occupation of Vienna.

Melanie Dobson has a way of drawing you into a scene; whether it’s the quaint intimacy
Oct 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

"It's a tale of two books and their owners, stories that didn't end between the covers."

Trapped inside Austria during the Nazi occupation in 1938, the lives of three families intersect in a most unusual way; the son of a castle owner, the caretaker's daughter, and a lovely violinist born into a Jewish family become life lines one for another. Annika has loved Max all her life, but Max only has eyes for the one whose music flows effortlessly between the strings and the bow. When the unt
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Writing fiction is a fun excuse for Melanie to explore ghost towns and old houses, travel to unusual places, and spend hours reading dusty books and journals. She writes both contemporary and historical fiction with threads of romance and suspense.

Melanie is the award-winning author of almost twenty time-slip, historical romance, suspense, and contemporary novels including Catching the Wind, Bene
“She did this because Hitler and him men had given her no other choice.” 0 likes
“Every girl should have a mom to talk to, a woman who cares about what she thinks. Who’s there when her body—or her heart—is hurting.” 0 likes
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