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The Sight of the Stars

3.7  ·  Rating details ·  851 Ratings  ·  74 Reviews
New York Times bestselling author Belva Plain beguiles us once again with a novel that explores the bonds that sustain families—and the lies that can shatter them forever. Sweeping through the pivotal events of twentieth-century America, The Sight of the Stars chronicles four generations of one remarkable family as they journey through years of love, loss, sacrifice, and u ...more
Hardcover, Large Print, 480 pages
Published December 30th 2003 by Random House Large Print (first published January 1st 2003)
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Dec 16, 2016 rated it liked it
I read the Reader's digest condensed version of this book. I didn't have had a high hopes on its selections; it has a "chick lit" vibe on it. But this one stands out.

The characters are well drawn out, but the story is rather predictable and mundane, (in a span of three generations, people normally die) not so full plot twists, just like in real life.

Nonetheless it turned out to be better than I expected. Finished the book in two sitting. So glad to have found this gem.
Oct 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes historical fiction
Recommended to Mary by: Paperback Swap
Dressed in a new suit with 150 dollars in his pocket, Adam Arnring says goodbye to his family and boards a train for the West. The year is 1907. Adam is nineteen years old, a young man with stars in his eyes who has dreams of a bright future in the wide open spaces of America. Far from his New Jersey roots, Adam lands a job in a small department store in a booming Texas town. He is taken with the beautiful and untouchable Emma Rothirsch who inhabits a world whose doors are forever closed to him. ...more
Aug 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
It started slowly and maintained a stately pace throughout, but I got attached to the characters by the end, and it ended up being one of those books you can't stop thinking about for days. It made me want to read more of Belva's books.
Joe Whelan
Nov 19, 2016 rated it did not like it
Found this book in a belongs back in a bar.
Ingrid Fasquelle
Nov 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Belva Plain, signature majeure de la littérature féminine mondiale, est décédée en 2010. Elle est l’auteure de nombreux best-sellers, tous parus chez Belfond. Parmi eux figurent Là où les chemins nous mènent (2010), Les complaisances du cœur (2012) ou encore Promesse qui a été réédité en 2017 dans la collection Le Cercle. Tous ses titres sont repris chez Pocket.
Dans Les saisons du bonheur, nous sommes en 1900 et l’Amérique est le pays de toutes les espérances. Bien décidé à être acteur de son de
Jul 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
The story revolves around Adam Arnring who was born about the turn of the century to a Jewish father and an Irish immigrant mom. It's Adam's success story about using his drive and ability to to get along and work hard to achieve his goal. Not all members of his family are quite as successful and happy in their lives.
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
I thought I had read all of Belva Plain's books. My sister gave me this book and I was pleasantly surprised to read it was new to me. It was a very fast and enjoyable story as so many of her books are.
Sharon Shreve
Oct 10, 2017 rated it liked it
This is OK,
Nov 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Belva Plain is one of my favorite authors.
Dec 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
The characters became family to me. Couldn't wait to see their next life event.
Jan 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I was first introduced to the novels of Belva Plain by my mother over thirty years ago. Somehow I had overlooked this one and only recently stumbled onto it as an audio book. It did not disappoint.
Rhonda Soukup
Story of the life of a young man in the early 1900s who goes out west to find his fortune. He ends up in Texas and takes over the running of a department store that is on the way toward failure. He makes it a success and then meets his life partner. The story goes through the young man's whole life and the raising of his family and grandkids.
Feb 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book,
Dec 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
I read an old Belva Plain novel, which I was so lucky to find on my bookshelves, unread, purchased a dozen years ago. Plain died a few years ago, so finding the one I had not read was a real treat for me! Her books never let me down, and are always the perfect way to get caught up in the lives of characters to the point where I want to read about them, rather than live my own life. The novels always snap themselves shut around a reader, like a Venus fly trap, and don't let go until after the las ...more
Oct 06, 2012 rated it liked it
Dressed in a brand-new suit, with one hundred and fifty dollars in his pocket, Adam Arnring says good-bye to his family and boards a train for the fabled West. The year is 1907. Adam is nineteen years old, a young man with stars in his eyes who has always dreamed of a future in the great open spaces of America. Now, far from his New Jersey home, he takes the first step toward attaining that dream, landing a job in a small department store in a booming Texas town. Here he meets a woman who excite ...more
Mademoiselle M
Jul 26, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporain
Suivez toutes mes chroniques sur mon blog : http://souslaplumedemademoisellem.blo...
Suivez-moi également sur Facebook :

Du bout de sa jolie plume, Belva Plain nous invite en toute simplicité à suivre le destin du jeune Adam Arnring. Né d’une union illégitime, Adam se vit souvent affublé du surnom de bâtard. Grandissant auprès d’une famille recomposée, son destin semblait tout tracé dans le magasin de son père. Cependant, ce jeune homme à l’espri
Murielle Cyr
Feb 12, 2016 rated it liked it
Belva Plain's novel, The Sight of the Stars, takes place in a small Texas town in the early 1900's.Young and determined to make his own way in life, Adam Arnring gets off the train and within a few hours has landed as a job as manager of a run down store owned by a no-nonsense widow. Through hard work and lots of creativity, Adam transforms the store into a flourishing establishment. Along comes the owner's daughter, the aloof Emma, and he is mesmerized.
This is a family story that spans a few ge
Jo-Ann Zhou
A life story

The book is all about Adam, a boy born illigitimate whose mother died after giving birth. Intelligent, brave, and caring, that is how I would describe him after I finished the book. However, still a human being, he is not perfect, for he also has flaws: a fair with another woman, and a grudge towards his own brother. To me, the perfect person of the book is his wife, Emma, who is elegant, decent, and considerate. One thing I got out of the book is that never do bad thing, for it will
Jan 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
I haven't read this author in a while, and really enjoyed this novel: the multiple generations of family, all of the family problems and challenges; it seemed to hit me as emotionally true. I loved the characters; wish I had a larger immediate family. Hey, I tried. After I raised my two, I planned to adopt another two; it never worked out. It was great that Thanksgiving was the family get together day across multiple generations. I've been rather isolated, stuck at home barely able to breathe, d ...more
Mar 07, 2014 rated it it was ok
I kept reading, hoping the book would get better. I did want to know what was going to happen to the characters, so they at least drew me in. But the description on the back promises "a shattering secret that reaches back nearly a century." I kept checking to see how many pages were left and wondering when the shattering secret would appear.

It's an intriguing story about family and how the choices you make have an effect on your life. I felt the story telling was disjointed, as there was no clea
May 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Belva Plain writes about the rags to riches of a Jewish immigrant. Adam travels from the East Coast and ends up in a small up and coming town on his way west. He uses his retail background to build up a failing department store and ends up marrying into the family. As Adam and Emma build their life and their family grows, the world enters WWI and the Depression hits. The family is affected more personally than financially from these events. Adam hides a secret from Emma for many years and his br ...more
Virginia Markhart
Dec 10, 2014 rated it liked it
Listened tot he audio book on a trip to Covelo. It was very very good. Kept my attention the entire time. The book follows the life of a man, Adam. He faces challenges in his career, family and marriage. It is realistic, belivable and captivating. He becomes part owner of a clothing store, marries the adopted daughter of the older woman who owns the store and makes a lot of changes that skyrocket the profits.

I love the flow of this book. I felt like I knew all the characters. He was so real.
Sep 24, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: romance
I had read one book by Belva Plain, and was looking forward to reading another. This book was disappointing.

It told a story over a man's entire life and even past his death. If the author had stopped and let the man and his true love live happily ever after when they got married, it would have been a realy nice story.

The ending was very unsatisfying. There is one storyline about the man's brother that just never resolves.
Feb 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is the story of Adam and four generations of his family. It is historical fiction starting in the year of 1907. He leaves New Jersey to find his fortune out west. He gets off the train randomly in a small town and ends up finding a job there in a small store. He works his way up over the years becoming an owner of several stores and finding a wife. The story is an easy read, light and enjoyable.
Holly Senecal
Jul 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
I really really enjoyed this book.... The characters were well written and the story line nicely done. One other plus about this book is that during a hectic week it was a good story that was easy to put down and pick up whenever I had the chance. The fact that the version I have is large print was an added plus...I may only be 40 years old but the large print books are my favorite :)

I am so looking forward to discovering more of Belva Plains novels!
Sep 19, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first Belva Plain book. I enoyed the story and the history that came along with it. The time setting was different for me and I enjoyed that aspect of the book. I thought the story, although fiction, a completely believable story of Adam Arning's life. The characters came to life and were real.. I have another Belva Plain book to read sometime soon.
Vivien Farrell
Oct 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Adam Arning who gets his first job turning around a failing department store. Falls in love with the daughter of the boss. Like many Belva Plain novels this one spans over generations of the family beautifully. A lovely book but maybe not quite as good as her very best, hence four stars though it is a great read.
Eileen Mandell
Jan 20, 2017 rated it liked it
I was looking or a light, easy to read, romance & Bela plain delivered. My time is busy & this book was the answer. This is a quick generational book. I enjoyed how the father of the family was threaded throughout the book. War, romance, secrets, suspense, death & many human problems were faced & confronted by these characters. Good read.....
May 02, 2010 rated it liked it
Not sure if I have read anything by Belva Plain before. This book is long and covers a man's whole life! It goes from him as a teenager to being an old man. And his life involved his family, his business, two world wars, changes in the country, and much more. I liked him and I liked the story. Problems came, but he and his wife worked through them. Refreshing!
Karen Repka
Jul 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
Rather predictable. The author tried to jam 50 years into several hundred pages -- handled the death of a major character in 1 paragraph!!! Some surprises, but overall, rather predictable. I had it in the car and chose not to even offer it to several of my friends I spent the week with when I was done -- felt it not worth a recommendation.
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Question 3 12 Apr 01, 2014 08:40AM  
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Belva Plain was a best-selling American author of mainstream women's fiction. Her first novel, Evergreen (1978) topped the New York Times bestseller list for 41 weeks and was made into a TV miniseries. At her death, there were over 30 million copies of her twenty-plus novels in print in 22 languages.

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