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The Giver of Stars

4.28  ·  Rating details ·  182,051 ratings  ·  17,745 reviews
From the author of Me Before You, set in Depression-era America, a breathtaking story of five extraordinary women and their remarkable journey through the mountains of Kentucky and beyond.

Alice Wright marries handsome American Bennett Van Cleve hoping to escape her stifling life in England. But small-town Kentucky quickly proves equally claustrophobic, especially living al
Hardcover, 388 pages
Published October 8th 2019 by Pamela Dorman Books (first published October 3rd 2019)
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RoseMary Achey I have read both and the Buzzfeed article. So glad I found your question as the entire time I was reading “Giver of Stars” I continually was comparing…moreI have read both and the Buzzfeed article. So glad I found your question as the entire time I was reading “Giver of Stars” I continually was comparing it to “Book Woman”. Book Woman does a far better job of capturing the Appalachian narrative. In addition Book Woman is a more engaging story than Giver of Stars. It is unfortunate that Richardson’s book did not receive the same acceptance as Moyes-but if you are going to read one read Book Woman.(less)

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Average rating 4.28  · 
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 ·  182,051 ratings  ·  17,745 reviews

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Nilufer Ozmekik
Oct 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: on-my-read-list
I don't want to read more plagiarism comments. Every book is unique and I truly loved this book which is one of my favorite reads of 2019! Period.

I don’t have to give 5 billion stars to this book! I would donate the full galaxy system to the author if I could. (I already made a phone call and talked to a NASA technician about their star auction department, unfortunately he hanged up on my face! Can you believe it? And I told them I was Buzz Aldrin’s wife, those young people are really disrespect
Brenda - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
I am far in the minority here with this one. For someone who rarely is I am not sure what is wrong with me. Way too much drama here for me and with similarities to The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek I am just one BIG grump so I am moving on! ...more
Dorie  - Cats&Books :)
Aug 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was so excited to see that Ms. Moyes had chosen to write a historical fiction novel and was fortunate enough to obtain an advanced readers copy. It is different from her previous contemporary women’s fiction and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

This book is a quick read, the prose flows beautifully and the plot moves along at a good pace. I found the characters to be well developed, interesting and unique.

As you all know from the blurb this book is based on the 1930’s Horseback Librarians program in K
A brilliant epic historical drama set in the US Depression era in Kentucky and the Appalachians from Jojo Moyes that draws on real life actual history. Those who have been life long readers will understand the power of books and reading, Moyes focuses on just how important books can be in challenging and changing people and in shaping the world in this powerful telling of the Horseback Librarians of Kentucky. The English Alice Wright weds American Bennett Van Cleve on his European Tour to escape ...more
Mar 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this story is a love letter to every person who understands the importance of literacy, of reading for both knowledge and entertainment, and the need for libraries. it is also a tribute to the resilience, independence, and compassion of women. both subjects are very dear to my heart, so this book feels like it was written for me personally, and i love that.

ive only known JM for her romance stories, which i enjoy, but she has really outdone herself with this historical tale. its an ode to humani
Angela M
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful tribute to how books can change people’s lives and to the Kentucky Pack Horse Librarians, so of course I loved this book. I first heard of the Pack Horse Librarians when I read The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek. It’s a fascinating piece of history. This initiative was started by Eleanor Roosevelt as part of the Works Progress Administration set up in the mid 1930’s. At first I thought that this would be just a good story about a group of gutsy, dedicated women who brought b ...more
Anna Luce
★★✰✰✰ 2.5 stars

“She wasn’t really one for big groups, but she quite liked this, the jokes and the merriment, and the way that you could see actual friendships springing up around the room, like green shoots.”

The Giver of Stars is a sweeping rural romance that tells a fictionalised account of the Kentucky Pack Horse Librarians. It is very much a book-club kind of book as it is inspired by a real group of librarians who between 1935 and 1943 delivered books to some of the most remote regions
Oct 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
5 stars

“She just wasn’t sure she had yet been to the place she was homesick for.”

okay okay okay so where do I start? Maybe with the fact that this book is freaking awesome and I really really liked it? Sounds about right.

So The Giver of Stars is basically about a group of women who work in this mobile library and their adventures while distributing books to houses that can not reach them easily. Honestly if you are not patient this book might bore you a little, because in the first 250 pages not
Nov 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
5 stars

“She just wasn’t sure she had yet been to the place she was homesick for.”

okay okay okay so where do I start? Maybe with the fact that this book is freaking awesome and I really really liked it? Sounds about right.

So The Giver of Stars is basically about a group of women who work in this mobile library and their adventures while distributing books to houses that can not reach them easily. Honestly if you are not patient this book might bore you a little, because in the first 250 pages not
Diane S ☔
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lor-2019
4.5 when I first started reading this I thought, wonderful another story about the pack librarians, this set in Kentucky. Wondered how close it would be to the The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek. Except for the job itself and being part of the WPA, not close at all. I was also glad that do many authors are writing about little known history, of strong women who refused to bend and accept only the roles available at that time.

Then I fell for the characters, was pulled into each of their lives. W
Oct 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: edelweiss
“Since you get more joy out of giving joy to others, you should put a good deal of thought into the happiness that you are able to give.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt started a traveling library program and many women answered the call to become traveling librarians. Women traveled on horseback to bring books to those living in rural areas. From the years of 1936 to 1940 over 100,000 people were brought books.

Recently married, Alice (Wright) Van Cleve, has moved from England to her n
Elyse  Walters
Oct 28, 2019 rated it liked it
With extraordinary mountain women delivering books as a part of Eleanor Roosevelt’s new traveling library...
that alone should have kept me interested.... not anywhere near outstanding.

The historical facts are noteworthy....
but it was a slow pony-reading-ride for me.

Oct 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
4.5 Stars rounded up to 5

This was a wonderful work of historical fiction based on the WPA project "Pack Horse" librarians. It was the FDR Administration's order to create a travelling library in the Appalachian Mountains of rural Kentucky. During 1935-1943, women would ride horses to homes in these mountainous locales, delivering books to families. They would come again the next week to retrieve those books and switch them out with others. These librarians came to know these families and what ki
Larry H
Oct 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars, rounded up.

"Just a little homesick, Alice answered. It was the truth, she thought. She just wasn't sure she had yet been to the place she was homesick for."

Alice Wright was suffocating in England. Her parents always treated her as an embarrassment, seeing her "emotional" nature and her free spirit as a definite liability, something which needed to be quashed. When she met handsome athlete Bennett Van Cleve, who is visiting England with his father, their whirlwind romance surprises Ali
Oct 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Englishwoman Alice Wright meets and marries Kentuckian Bennett Van Cleve after he and his father visit her homeland. Bennet sweeps her off her feet and she's madly in love, picturing living in a busy city, Instead the Bennetts live in a small mining town where they run the mines that employ most of the men while also taking advantage of the men and their families.

The marriage that Alice entered into so happily is a loveless marriage, with her brutal father in law berating Alice at every turn. A
Aug 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Historical Fiction Fans
Before I get into my review, I want to make those reading this aware that I was informed that this book has a similar story to The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek. Whether The Giver of Stars was inspired by the other book, just coincidentally about the same subject matter, or, as some conjecture, a “rip off” of the other title, I will not be addressing. I know that I see many books in one genre released close to each other a lot. One example is it seems like every other week there is a new book ...more
Nov 06, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 Stars

This is the ideal Winter Comfort Read, put the logs on the fire, or wrap up on the couch with a warm blanket and induge yourself in a little comfort reading. Having readThe Book Woman of Troublesome CreekThe Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson in May this year I did feel this one sort of overlapped for me and perhaps this is my reason for a 3.5 star rating. A lovely book but more fiction than history and hence my liking it as opposed to loving it.

Set in Depression era America, The Giver of Stars tells the fiction story of f
Feb 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Took me a while to get into this one....the beginning very much paralleled that of The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek. But as I continued to contemplate ditching it, it finally started to take a new curve and I am delighted to say, this became a much larger story.
A man is found in the mountains dead - with a copy of Little Women. A trial ensues with a travelling librarian. A story of resilience, sisterhood, strong women who are each faced with their own challenges but find solace in delivering
Feb 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Realy impressed by this book , Loved the bookclub and all the people in it and had an realy great connection with alice , realy enjoyed the story and the pacing and how real this all felt , the only thing that threw me of is the whole murder thing with the prison situation and stuff, I just don't like to read about it because i'm bored by it, but I can 100% recommend this book , don't hesitate to pick it up and let me know what you liked about it , 4⭐⭐⭐⭐
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Pack Horse librarians in the 1940s

Hard to put this one down! It's set in depression-era rural Kentucky, where an intelligent (if somewhat clueless, at least at first) English girl moves after a whirlwind romance and marriage to a handsome guy who's the son of the local bigwig and mine owner. Everything - including the marriage, for very good Reasons - is working out to be a huge disappointment for Alice, so when a lady in a town meeting asks for women to deliver library books by horse to the loc
Oct 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5000-2019
I really enjoyed this one so thank you to a couple of Goodreads friends who likened it to The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek which made me want to read it. I love the idea of those women who set off on the backs of horses and mules to take library books to people who lived far from civilisation.

The Giver of Stars tells of a group of these women and of their lives and their tribulations. Among them is Alice, a young woman from England in an unhappy marriage, Margery, a local woman with very indi
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maybe just to know that something this beautiful exists is all we can really ask for.”

The Pack Horse Library Initiative was an initiative that was part of the New Deal project in the 1930s. It was not the first attempt to improve the number of literate residents of Kentucky, the first one lasted one year in 1913. A later attempt followed as the 1920s were approaching and lasted slightly longer than the first initiative. This story covers the initiative of the 1930s. While the people and the inci
Nadia - on a break
The Giver of Stars is a historical fiction novel featuring true events that took place in Kentucky in late 30s and early 40s when a group of young women got employed by a US government scheme to go into the mountains on horses and take books to families who might not otherwise get a chance to read.

I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. I did enjoy the author's Me Before You but didn't feel the need to carry on with the two follow up books. Some stories are better left alone. The Giver of S
Feb 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Giver of Stars is a historical fiction story about the Packhorse Librarians of Kentucky, a group of 5 women who travel through a large region of the mountainous state delivering books to rural residents, through a program inspired by Eleanor Roosevelt. These women endure several challenges along the way, facing racism and sexism, as well as the hardships of small-town life.

Margery, the leader of the pack, was easily my favorite character, an independent woman well ahead of her time. Alice,
Dec 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is my 1,000th book review on Goodreads and by a complete coincidence it’s for a book about librarians - how perfect is that?!

Librarians maybe don’t sound like the most interesting choice for protagonists, but these aren’t your typical librarians. They are in the backwoods of Kentucky in the 1930s and instead of sitting in a library, they ride out on horses and donkeys to deliver books. They also have a myriad of interesting personal issues going on, including a little bit of romance (this
Lucy Langford

I was really debating between a 3 and a 4 star so ended up in the middle. This book was my first read about the Pack Horse Library Project which opened me up to learning a little bit about history that I never realised.

This was a fictional piece of work based around the library project in a Kentucky. Some parts of this book I really enjoyed- I enjoyed the individuality of each of the women, I liked that in a time where men controlled most things they fought to have this bit of independenc
February 2020 F.A.B. Bookclub Pick. # I.❤️. F.A.B.

A pack of strong women, delivering library books via horseback to the outskirts of Kentucky. I’m a sucker for any book about the love of books and this had all that and more. This had a crime/mystery, drama, love, friendship... sooooo many feels with this book. It’s was wonderful!
May 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book. Mrs. Brady was my favorite character. We need more people like her.
The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes won the Book Bucket List contest on my blog for September 2020. Over 25% of voters chose this book as the one I must read, and I'm glad they did. I've previously read Moyes' three novels in the Me Before You series, and I wasn't sure how anything else could compare. Given this was historical fiction and focused on women delivering library books, it had pretty strong chances of turning out good!

At first, I was worried. It is a slow-to-start book, even much of the
Oct 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My 2019 Goodreads Challenge is complete!!

Thanks to book #60 being a 5 star read!

I'd like to point out that this is one of my favorite covers of the year. It is gorgeous. Luckily, (but not suprisingly), the inside is just as good. I've only read two of Jojo Moyes' previous works: Me Before You (like most people) and The Girl You Left Behind (which was just okay for me). The premise of this is right up my alley, plus I looked forward to learning something new.

Ms. Moyes has such a gift for writi
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Jojo Moyes is a British novelist.

Moyes studied at Royal Holloway, University of London. She won a bursary financed by The Independent newspaper to study journalism at City University and subsequently worked for The Independent for 10 years. In 2001 she became a full time novelist.

Moyes' novel Foreign Fruit won the Romantic Novelists' Association (RNA) Romantic Novel of the Year in 2004.

She is mar

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