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Where the Forest Meets the Stars: a novel

Where the Forest Meets the Stars: a novel

Scris de Glendy Vanderah

Povestit de Lauren Ezzo


Where the Forest Meets the Stars: a novel

Scris de Glendy Vanderah

Povestit de Lauren Ezzo

evaluări:
4.5/5 (682 evaluări)
Lungime:
9 hours
Lansat:
Mar 1, 2019
ISBN:
9781978644106
Format:
Carte audio

Descriere

An Amazon Charts bestseller. In this gorgeously stunning debut, a mysterious child teaches two strangers how to love and trust again. After the loss of her mother and her own battle with breast cancer, Joanna Teale returns to her graduate research on nesting birds in rural Illinois, determined to prove that her recent hardships have not broken her. She throws herself into her work from dusk to dawn, until her solitary routine is disrupted by the appearance of a mysterious child who shows up at her cabin barefoot and covered in bruises. The girl calls herself Ursa, and she claims to have been sent from the stars to witness five miracles. With concerns about the child's home situation, Jo reluctantly agrees to let her stay—just until she learns more about Ursa's past. Jo enlists the help of her reclusive neighbor, Gabriel Nash, to solve the mystery of the charming child. But the more time they spend together, the more questions they have. How does a young girl not only read but understand Shakespeare? Why do good things keep happening in her presence? And why aren't Jo and Gabe checking the missing children's website anymore? Though the three have formed an incredible bond, they know difficult choices must be made. As the summer nears an end and Ursa gets closer to her fifth miracle, her dangerous past closes in. When it finally catches up to them, all of their painful secrets will be forced into the open, and their fates will be left to the stars.

Lansat:
Mar 1, 2019
ISBN:
9781978644106
Format:
Carte audio


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  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Amazing story. Very well written. I loved how Ursa taught Jo and Gabe how to trust and love. Its such a magical book with loads of realism thrown in. The second half was more griping and more of a page turner for me personally.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (1/5)
    In all fairness — did not get past chapter 1. The Southern twang was annoying and the writing banal. Whatever intrigue the idea of the book held did not keep me engaged.
  • (5/5)
    Amazing attention to subtle details and ability in description of settings.
  • (5/5)
    I loved the long slow build of this story. And the growing love and attachment of the child and adults. Half way through I was believing the child's story of herself as it started making more sense to me.
  • (4/5)
    I really enjoyed this book. I needed it to complete a prompt and it was a recommendation and without reading the blurb I decided to give it a listen. I really enjoyed going in completely blind.
  • (5/5)
    Wow this was such a lovely, heartrenching story. Not what is as expecting at all but so glad I've listened to this.
  • (5/5)
    Beautiful story of hope and mystery. Couldn’t stop listening. Very well read.
  • (5/5)
    The most amazing story. I laughed and cried so much.
  • (3/5)
    The writing is rather amateur with the "he said" "she said" becoming very abrasive after some time. The story itself is cute but a develops a bit slowly.
  • (5/5)
    Very descriptive and enchanting. I really appreciated this story this time of year.
  • (5/5)
    I’m sorry there are only 5 stars to give. This book and its narrator deserve at least 10 apiece. Wonderful storyline, memorable and well fleshed out characters, lessons to learn throughout. A credible combination of sci-fi, character study, and mystery.
  • (5/5)
    The story was superb. Slow. And character development was also good. I just wish their’s more story. Epilogue?although I’m sucker for epilogue ? but overall, it is a superb story and I love it ❤️❤️❤️
  • (4/5)
    This is a very charming story (that you have to suspend your disbelief for, a little, haha).
  • (5/5)
    I don’t think I’ve loved a book this much since A Man Called Ove. It’s a beautiful, funny, well written story. And I love the narrator.
  • (3/5)
    The plot is interesting at the start, but having all the characters come and go and behave differently throughout the story is not something i like (like the sister that doesn't like Jo and behaves in a certain way, then she likes Jo).
    Also i didn't like in the end how the plot was everywhere, but at the same time, there. It explored Jo and her career and then like remembering about Ursa it was all about her.
  • (3/5)
    Easy listening. Would have preferred more depth in character development.
  • (5/5)
    A gripping tale with interesting characters and a plot that keeps you wanting more. I really enjoyed the narration as well.
  • (4/5)
    Where the Forest Meets the Stars is a first novel by Glendy Vanderah, and it's really good.I've been having trouble for days finding anything readable in the house. I think I've been indoors for too long - it's not just been the social distancing, but the long months of nervous breakdown and my own bout of coronavirus and the seemingly endless process of recovery. My usual gusto for reading has been knocked out of me, but luckily today I found this lovely book, and with a background of classical music, I spent many relaxing and peaceful hours engaged with the incredibly realistic characters in the novel, and with a quirky and unusual plot line that's unlike anything I've read before.Jo is a PhD student, spending the summer in southern Illinois studying the nesting success rates of indigo buntings, when Ursa stumbles into her life. Ursa is a little girl, dressed in pyjamas, barefoot, hungry, and bruised. Unwilling to share the truth about her problems here on Earth, Ursa tells Jo that she is an alien from the pinwheel galaxy in the constellation of Ursa Major, here to view five miracles before returning to her home planet. Jo's attempts to hand over the case and the girl to the police, or to get her into foster care simply do not work, and Jo becomes more and more attached to Ursa. Jo also becomes very attached indeed to her neighbour, the handsome if unstable Gabriel.The story flows beautiful, although I will say that the last hundred pages of the novel were not as smooth as the first two hundred. I don't think it's a coincidence that the first part of the novel was set in a rural area among birds - the author herself has ornithological credentials and she's clearly more at home writing about what she loves. When the setting moves to an urban area - (view spoiler) - the writing is choppier. But this is a first novel! Obviously there won't be the absolute spit-and-polish of a more seasoned writer, and I did love the story.This is the sort of book that sweeps you away and makes hours pass unbidden, and I hope Glendy Vanderah writes more books for me to disappear into.Listened to while reading:Tchaikovsky - Violin Concerto in D Major, soloist - Jascha HeifetzHandel - Water MusicJ.S. Bach - (Best of )Anna Magdalena's Notebook
  • (5/5)
    Where the Forest Meets the StarsBy: Glendy VanderahNarrated by: Lauren EzzoThis is going in my favorite file! A little girl shows up at a single woman's home near the woods. She said that her home is the stars. She would stay until she sees five miracles. This girl is stubborn, smart, and lovable. The book is very character driven and goes deep into the heart. This is the kind of story that stays with you for days. A feel good book when it is finished but my emotions were all over the place during the story. A would recommend this book to anyone. This is not my normal genre to read but I wanted to expand my horizons. This was excellent!The narration performance was great too.
  • (5/5)
    Magical Realism at its best!This story is beautiful! The characters have such depth that your soul feels their hugs. This is a book that should not be missed.
  • (4/5)
    This was another surprisingly feel good KU book. I liked it from the first and was rooting for a happy ending for Ursa and Jo. And then for Gabe. I liked how all of these broken people came together and became better for it. It was unrealistic but I was okay with that.
  • (2/5)
    Checking out a few reviews and reading the summary of what the book was about, I thought I would like it. It did turn out to be a easy read and a somewhat interesting story for a while before “going off the rails” when Jo and Gabe began their romance.
    To me, the use of the “alien child” was merely a gimmick for telling a rather standard romance story. Since I finally became annoyed enough with the book to stop reading it on page 202, I don’t know if anything is ever done about the “alien” aspect, but from the less than glowing reviews I have now gone back and read, it appears that I would have been unsatisfied with the ending.
    The parts that bothered and annoyed me were mentioned in other reviews: the handling of Gabe’s clinical depression and his very real lifelong social anxiety. When Jo decides against Gabe’s objections to cut off his beard after he had worn it most of his life, I was offended. In the events that followed the few days after this shave was forced on him, there appears to have been no consequence for it, something which is simply not realistic.
    Jo’s decision that she knew what Gabe needed more than he did displayed arrogant ignorance and since “Jo” is a fictional character, it is the author who is guilty of this ignorance. The arrogance is perpetuated when there a[[ears to be no consequence for the sudden change in Gabe’s defense system. Psychiatric help had not helped Gabe, but Jo’s lust was just the thing he needed.
    Moreover, Jo’s acceptance of her body and of herself was too sudden, too extreme to occur so suddenly, and it was inadequately explained when Ursa’s “special powers” were given as the cause.
    I was looking for a Sci-Fi hook and story that innovatively integrated Sci-Fi with romance., as promised in the publisher’s summary of the book. What the book gave me instead was not even a good romance where an “alien” replaced a fairy princess using pixie dust.
    I have too many really interesting books on my TBR shelf to have lost so much time reading this misdirected and sorry romance novel.
    From now on, I am going to spend more time reading negative reviews than 4 and 5 star gush from indiscriminate readers who, apparently, can’t distinguish between filet mignon and cube steak.
  • (4/5)
    Joanna is a field biologist studying the nesting behavior of indigo buntings. She is staying in a cabin in a rural area. She mostly keeps to herself as she is still mourning the loss of her mother and dealing with the aftereffects of her own cancer treatment. She has really only interacted with the man who lives nearby – he sells eggs on the side of the road a few days a week.Then one night a young girl appears out of the woods. She has no shoes and she claims to be from outer space. Joanna wants to call the police but the girl warns she will run away. She claims she needs to stay on Earth until she sees five miracles and then she will go back to her planet.Soon Joanna enlists the Egg Man to help with the young girl whom they start calling Ursa. They know that they should turn her in to social services but Ursa is like a will o’the wisp and runs whenever police are seen.It also seems that Ursa brings an aura of good luck that touches everyone in her orbit. But exactly what is Ursa’s reality? How did she end up where she was and where does she belong?Where the Forest Meets the Stars is mostly a book about relationships. Joanna had mostly withdrawn from the world after the loss of her mother. Gabe, the Egg Man is pretty much hiding away after a bout with depression. Ursa has her secrets and her ethereal manner pulls these two lonely people together and she helps to heal a lot of psychic wounds.I found the book and its various subplots to be interesting and the way it all came together at the end was a little contrived but it still made for a good read. There were some bits that just didn’t make sense at all – like two adults caring for a young girl not related to them and not really doing anything substantial to find her family – that really stretched reality.It’s one of those books that you just can’t let the rules of the real world interfere with what is going on in the story or it will just ruin things. Just read the book and go along for the ride.
  • (2/5)
    I've waited several days to write this review, in case waiting would help solidify my disposition on it. Maybe it did. At least I'm not as zealous in commenting about it. Here's the thing. The basic story that is the basis for this novel is actually pretty creative. It's undoubtedly why so many people have praised it as they have. Moreover, throughout the length of the book, the author maintains this question mark for the reader over whether a key character is or is not -- ah, alien. That's not an easy task to pull off. On the other hand -- and here is where fans of this book and its level of writing can stop reading -- this is the fifth book I have read from Amazon's First Reads program, and this book like all the others has notable problems with what I will call sloppy narratives. To one degree or another, each of these books -- and this one is certainly no exception -- have problems with (1) erroneous facts about the time or place in which they are set, (2) unfathomable behavior by key characters, or, more likely, secondary characters, especially authority figures, or (3) questionable values that supposedly the reader is supposed to just take for granted as valid, or some combination of these matters. The publishers of this book make quite a point about both the author and the lead character growing up in or near Chicago, and doing advanced academic research involving birds through a major university in Illinois. So why doesn't the author know that what she has her characters say about two suburbs of Chicago and Chicago itself are not true. Admittedly, it helps that I have lived in one of the suburbs mentioned, have had relatives living in the other suburb, and have worked in Chicago, so I may notice these things that others wouldn't. Okay, maybe a small thing. How about why characters have to keep their voices down for fear the next door neighbors will hear them, but the distance between the two homes is too far to walk? Or how about having some issue so important to address immediately that you wake another person up in the middle of the night, but suddenly have time -- before anything has been resolved -- to have some nice "intimate" time together. And it didn't help that my experience working for a major research hospital pointed out unlikely medical treatments and behaviors by two different characters. I also took note of the researcher character claiming that the work she was doing was spiritual, but never once mentioning the science aspect. And there's the obvious degradation of any and all government connected authority figures, but that doesn't prevent the author from having a strange scene where everybody, including the dreaded evil government characters, all suddenly reveal an in-depth knowledge and appreciation of Shakespeare. (And good times were had by all.) I'll end with a complaint about the values system promoted by this book. Other reviewers and the author herself basically says this is a book about love. Fine, so why does a character with a drinking problem get dumped on so badly, while two characters with major substance abuse issues and related miserable parenting skills, get high marks for simply doing a couple things right -- in the name of love, or course. If only the author had known how to write in an alcoholic character who was worthy of love, too. Hasn't she ever seen a lovable drunk? In the end, (1) I lied, waiting to write this didn't help, and (2) I would be more likely to think this author could a write a much better book in the future if I thought that some of the problems with this one weren't baked in permanently by their creator.
  • (4/5)
    Where should we begin with this book. It is an interesting story with a few wounded people got thrown together and definitely feel good ending. It is an easy read with nice flow. The characters are well described and likable in a plot of a fantasy story with some realistic life problems dealt with in an alternative manner.
  • (5/5)
    Heartwarming, entertaining and overall warm love story in more ways than one.
  • (5/5)
    4.5 so beautiful! And one of my very favorite narrators!
  • (4/5)
    This was an interesting and charming book—a little schmaltzy, but that can be fun sometimes, too.
  • (4/5)
    Had to stick with it. Once it grabbed me, I couldn’t stop listening. Sometimes I found the narrator a little lackluster. The story was amazing tho. Definitely worth a listen.
  • (5/5)
    Beautifully narrated, human and full of compassion, this story never drops the moment. You’re always immersed, hopeful, terrified and smitten. Wonderful!