Another week, and another book review! We are getting so close to the end of the year! And I still have quite a few books to go (oops!)! Here's hoping I catch up in the next few weeks! I'm on Week 43, and Book 43, which is crazy to me!
If you need a reminder on why I do a weekly book review, check it out here!
So, with no more ado, here is my review of The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes!
The Giver of Stars begins when English-woman Alice marries American Bennett Van Cleve and moves from England to rural Kentucky. Soon, Alice realizes that she can never live up to the memory of Bennett's mother as the house is still a shrine to her. She is continually scrutinized by the other townspeople and can't consummate her marriage since her father-in-law is staying in the room next door.
Soon, the neighbors decide to create a Packhorse Library to deliver books to the more rural folks. Despite Bennett protesting, Alice joins the library.
She soon meets Margery O'Hare, the lead librarian, who soon shows Alice the ways of the Kentucky countryside.
Alice soon finds solace in the outdoors, and her friendships with the other librarians, instead of her marriage. Soon, Margery hires Sophia, a black woman to mend the books at night since the library is taking off successfully. Alice also develops a friendship with Fred, the man who's shed the library is held in. She finds a book about martial love in the library, and after reading it, tries to sleep with Bennett. He reacts badly, and tells his father who decides he needs to shut down the library.
When Alice refuses to stop working for the library, her father-in-law beats her. She flees to Margery's house and refuses to return to the Van Cleve house.
As Winter turns to Spring, the body of one of the local drunks is found on one of Margery's routes, a library book near him. Margery is charged with his murder and taken to jail. Margery, now pregnant with her lover's baby, waits til after she delivers to go to trial. She soon has a little daughter. It looks like Margery will be charged as guilty, until the other library's decide to go talk to the drunk's daughters. They convince the oldest daughter to come down and she states her father was going to return his book when he must have slipped and hit his head. Margery is cleared and reunites with her lover and daughter. Alice and Fred soon realizes that because she and Bennett never consummated the marriage, it can be annulled. Soon, Alice and Fred are married, as are Margery, and her lover Sven. The library continues to deliver books.
I was hesitant to read this one since I don't love Moyes's other novels, but I am so glad I decided to pick this one up! Anything historical fiction I am all about! I loved that the Packhorse Library was real, and shed light on a very poor area of Kentucky. I think Moyes did a great job bringing Depression-era Kentucky to life! She painted a beautiful picture of the mountains, and the landscape, and really made you feel like you were riding the paths with Alice and Margery.
I liked Moyes's style in this novel. I didn't lover her style in some of her other novels. I think she was very eloquent in The Giver of Stars, really using words to bring these characters and this place to life! Her descriptions were beautiful, and I think she managed to breath so much life into a topic I knew nothing about before I read this novel! I loved getting to learn about the Packhorse Library. This novel was very well written, which I was pleasantly surprised by.
I honestly have no complaints about this novel. I think the setting was amazing, the characters were very well-written, it was stylistically moving, the plot was very original, I got to learn something new, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it! There is not one thing I can think of that I didn't like about this novel!
All in all, I give The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes an enthusiastic 5 out of 5!