This post contains affiliate links. I had long been planning on reading The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes, but it wasn’t until my book club picked it that I finally settled down to read it. I don’t know why I didn’t read it sooner!
About The Giver of Stars
Set in 1930s Kentucky, The Giver of Stars is about five women who run the local WPA traveling library, riding horseback to deliver books to families in the remote mountains. Each of the women have their own trials and dramas, though some women’s stories are much less developed than others.
One of the main characters is Alice, who is from England. Alice is married to Bennett, who swept her off her feet when he and his father visited Europe. Little did Alice know that marriage with Bennett would not be as she had planned. However, she was so unhappy with her life in England that she probably still would have married him. Once back in Bennett’s hometown in Kentucky, she feels out of place and conspicuous, and Bennett doesn’t do much to make her feel more comfortable. She finally becomes more comfortable when she becomes one of the traveling librarians.
Another main character is Margery, a tough, non-traditional woman who defies all of the gender stereotypes of the time. Her father was abusive, and Margery soon learned that the only person she could depend on was herself. Her refusal to conform to feminine gender roles annoys many in the town, especially Bennett’s father, who runs the local mines.
While this story starts out being about the traveling library, as the readers delve deeper into Alice and Margery’s lives, they learn there is much more to their stories.
This is Moyes first book that I’ve read, but it won’t be the last. This is a fabulous story, and it even brought me to tears a few times! I enjoyed reading about what life was like in the 1930s for people in the rural areas of Kentucky and how hard the librarians worked to get books to everyone who wanted them. Moyes wrote two compelling story lines about Alice and Margery, though I wish she would have explained Bennett’s character and motivation a bit more.
I give The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes 5 out of 5 stars on th Mom’s Plans’ scale.