Get a free audiobook

The Giver of Stars

A Novel
Written by: Jojo Moyes
Narrated by: Julia Whelan
Length: 13 hrs and 52 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (381 ratings)

CDN$ 14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

A Reese Witherspoon X Hello Sunshine Book Club Pick

Number-One New York Times Best Seller

“I’ve been a huge Jojo Moyes fan. Her characters are so compelling.... It’s such a great narrative about personal strength and really captures how books bring communities together.” (Reese Witherspoon)

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, from the author of Me Before You

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 alongside her overbearing father-in-law. So, when a call goes out for a team of women to deliver books as part of Eleanor Roosevelt’s new traveling library, Alice signs on enthusiastically. 

The leader, and soon Alice's greatest ally, is Margery, a smart-talking, self-sufficient woman who's never asked a man's permission for anything. They will be joined by three other singular women who become known as the Packhorse Librarians of Kentucky.

What happens to them - and to the men they love - becomes an unforgettable drama of loyalty, justice, humanity, and passion. These heroic women refuse to be cowed by men or by convention. And though they face all kinds of dangers in a landscape that is at times breathtakingly beautiful, at others brutal, they’re committed to their job: bringing books to people who have never had any, arming them with facts that will change their lives.

Based on a true story rooted in America’s past, The Giver of Stars is unparalleled in its scope and epic in its storytelling. Funny, heartbreaking, enthralling, it is destined to become a modern classic - a richly rewarding novel of women’s friendship, of true love, and of what happens when we reach beyond our grasp for the great beyond.

Soon to be a major motion picture!

©2019 Jojo Moyes (P)2019 Penguin Audio

What the critics say

"The Giver of Stars is a richly rewarding exploration of the depths of friendship, good men willing to stand up to bad and adult love. Moyes celebrates the power of reading in a terrific book that only reinforces that message." (USA Today)

"Though she made her mark writing contemporary romance, Moyes proves just as adept at historical fiction.... The Giver of Stars is a celebration of love, but also of reading, of knowledge, of female friendship, of the beauty of our most rural corners and our enduring American grit: the kind of true grit that can be found in the hills of Kentucky and on the pages of this inspiring book." (The Washington Post)

"[A] dramatic, sweeping story.... As well as creating wonderful strong characters, Jojo Moyes has an incredible eye for historical detail - I really felt as though I was riding over those Kentucky mountains with those women." (Sophie Kinsella for Bustle)

"With characters so real they feel like dear friends and a compelling storyline, this is a beautiful, special novel. I loved it and didn’t want it to end!" (Liane Moriarty, number-one New York Times best-selling author of Big Little Lies)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    293
  • 4 Stars
    69
  • 3 Stars
    15
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    3

Performance

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    306
  • 4 Stars
    45
  • 3 Stars
    6
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    5

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    262
  • 4 Stars
    79
  • 3 Stars
    15
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it!

Absolutely loved this book. I never write reviews for books and this one I had to.

The Narrator gets all the voices down perfectly so you can follow along no problem at all when there is conversation going on.

The story itself was very good, no major “on the edge of my seat” parts but I found it very engaging the entire time.

I definitely recommend this listen, by far one of the best books I’ve had on audible in a long time!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great narration, Fantastic job with different voices.

Loved the story. A great example of the resilience of women, their ability to seek kindness , and their connection to one another.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

What can I say?

I loved this book. It was well presented and a very interesting story. It had a bit of everything humour sadness , bulling, hope, love, and how goodness trumps over evil. A great read.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fascinating story of extraordinary women.

The characters in Baileyville became as real to me as if I was sitting beside them. The women, each drawn in to the Packhorse library by a different circumstance, must all confront their own barriers. Whatever the challenge it is their friendship that grows, sustains and in turns lifts each of them up to inhabit her own strength. It is in the context of a time and place where women were only beginning to earn their full independence, and yet it is timeless, as even today, women are strongest when we stand together.
Fiona is a charming, strong character who finds her true passion in the mountains of Kentucky, and a most unlikely set of friends at the library. Her story is at times humourous, at times perilous and at times profoundly sad. In the end, it is extremely satisfying.
The narrator is amazing, leaping back and forth between accents and voices seamlessly - and none feel as if they are artificial or 'put on'.
I chose this book because it was recommended to me by Audible based in past purchases. I have to say they Nailed It!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved this book

Did not want this book to end. Loved the relationship between the women. Looking forward to the movie.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

loved it

oh how I enjoyed this book. it was so captivating and the characters were impossible not to love.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Thoroughly enjoyed this

This story was entertaining from start to finish . One of my favourite listening experiences ever and only made better by the narrator

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

captivating

Jojo makes you feel like part of her story...The beauty of Kentucky flows across the pages

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

librarian cowgirls!?! yess please.

I so enjoyed this read. it was thrilling, touching, feminist, and just a great story. i would recommend it to my friends

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

love love love

I didn't expect to love this book so much!
The narration was fantastic and the story itself had me hooked from minute one.
if you're looking for a book that will get you out of your own head and into this story with historical truth intertwined into it then download this.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-10-25

About time!

I loved Me Before You and some of Moyes other books weren’t quite up my alley, but this one was really something to listen to.

Julia’s narration was superb, boasting a full cast of various genders, ages, and accents.
Loved how the story played out, and Marjorie kinda fires up your inner “ you tell ‘em girl!” inside us all.
Sometimes you read ( listen to) a bunch of “ meh” books and you just need one book to make you think there are still good writers out there.
Glad this was a worthwhile credit used:)

149 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Elizabeth
  • 2019-10-13

JoJo Moyes does not disappoint!

I only “read” audio and I’m fussy. I loved this book. This historical fiction from the mid-30’s in the Kentucky mountains is well researched, with rich characters. I so enjoyed all the librarians and how they grew from both their work and the relationships they developed with each other. I am going to miss the two main characters.
There is a lot packed into this book. I couldn’t put it down. And excellent narration.

98 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Barbara N.
  • 2019-10-25

Beautiful book / excellent narrator

One of best books I’ve listened to since Where The Crawdads Sing!!
Couldn’t put it down. The narration was awesome as was the beautiful story of the WPA Pack Horse Librarians.
Highly recommend.

150 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • MMinSouthernCA
  • 2019-11-21

Weird Similarities to “The Book Woman...”

After reading both “The Giver of Stars” and “The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek,” (the latter of which was written first by Kim Michele Richardson) I am disappointed and troubled by the numerous remarkable similarities between these two books. “Giver” is also an oddly stark diversion in subject matter and setting for Jojo Moyes, and I have read and enjoyed all of Moyes’ previous books. I don’t know what the explanation for this might be, but I found it disturbing and unfortunate.

28 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jamamama
  • 2019-10-25

Coal books and women

I loved this story about Eastern Ky. I drove with my aunt and her bookmobile ( modern version of this story) to isolated settlements in this same area. It was a great story, beautifully told with a satisfactory ending.

65 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Diana
  • 2019-10-15

Read it first

I loved this book. I have lived in the Appalachian mountains my entire life. How did I not know about this? This would make a great book club feature.

60 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • ROBIN
  • 2019-10-15

My favorite book this year!

This story and it's characters grabbed my interest from the very beginning.
I knew half way through that I didn't want it to end, and that I would miss these people. I am not usually a big fan of historical fiction, but this book was outstanding! I also love that the pack horse library was a real thing.
I highly recommend this one, regardless of your typical genre.

83 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lynn Jenkins
  • 2019-10-16

Another winner

Did not want this book to end. I am finished listening however and feel so enriched by this wonderful story. The premise of the book is based on the true story of women working against immense odds to venture out in remote areas of Kentucky on horseback, delivering reading material to women and families who would not otherwise have access to them. Such beautiful character development and warm stories of these women finding success and acceptance. Truly a wonderful book. Thank you Ms. Moyes. Please get cracking on your next book?

46 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-10-20

Ladies and books!!!

I just loved this story. I listened to this on my audible and I just loved the accents. The story had me from the beginning. I laughed, cried and was so angry while listening to the story. The commitment these women had to the library and to town people was so wonderful. The unusual friendship that bloomed between 5 women was so special and made you fall in love with their world and what they were trying to achieve. Was sad when the story ended.

41 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • ReviewMistress
  • 2019-12-13

Contrived and Predictable

Marge, Alice, Beth, Izzy and Sophia are a tight group of women who get on horseback to bring the library to country folk living deep in the forests (except Sophia). All of these characters are tired old tropes. Marge is an independent woman who doesn't play by the rules, Alice is in a loveless marriage, Izzy is a woman with a disability who doesn't know her own potential, Beth is gruff and seems only there to give opportunity for dialogue and Sophia is the African American woman who is wise and is capable of performing miscellaneous skills such as fixing book covers and being a midwife and just when needed. All of the woman are surrounded by one dimensional men who are either mean and ignorant or give unconditional admiration.

Yes bringing books and therefore enlightenment to uneducated "folk" is nice but where it goes t0o far into chic-lit-land is when the plot gets contrived. For example, Alice has a job, a place to live, friends, a man that cares for her and who she cares for and loves the land and yet "must go home to England". Why? To create a plot point? It's never really clear but guess what? Yep you guessed it she gets convinced to stay and then gets married.

If you want a book with interesting characters, don't buy this one.

6 people found this helpful