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Stardust: A Novel Paperback – May 15, 2012
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"With beautiful imagery that engages all the senses, Carla Stewart swept me right into the world of the bayou in the 1950's. Her latest novel, Stardust is told with heart and skill and obvious love for her characters. A gripping storyline that is inspiring and unforgettable."―Julie L. Cannon, bestselling author of I'll Be Home for Christmas and Twang
"Carla Stewart is one of the best at slicing out a piece of Americana and serving it to the reader in a delicious story. Stardust is a smooth, inviting, well told story that will stick with you long after you read the last line and close the book. A worthy read."―Rachel Hauck, award winning author of Dining with Joy
"Carla Stewart writes with incredible heart and warmth. Her stories manage to challenge and comfort me all the while keeping me glued to the page. She's an amazing talent."
―Gina Holmes, bestselling author of Crossing Oceans and Dry as Rain
"Carla Stewart writes from the heart about a hard subject. As a polio survivor, I understand the fear and worry that the polio epidemics of the twentieth century evoked. Carla transcends that fear with compassion and achingly beautiful prose. Stardust is a winner."―Linda S. Clare, author of The Fence My Father Built
"Carla Stewart is a talented writer who has proven that again with Stardust. I was hooked from the first sentence and am anxious to share this engaging story with our She Reads readers."―Marybeth Whalen, Founder and Co-Director of She Reads (www.shereads.org), the fiction division of Proverbs 31 Ministries, and author of She Makes It Look Easy and The Mailbox
"This first-person narrative contains resolute characters and vivid descriptions of a small Texas community in the 1950's. If her debut is any indication, Stewart has a promising future."―Romantic Times, 4 1/2 stars for Chasing Lilacs
"Coming-of-age stories are a fiction staple, but well-done ones much rarer. This emotionally acute novel is one of the rare ones."―Publishers Weekly, starred review for Chasing Lilacs
"While the story is heartbreaking, there is much more to this book. The lives of Mitzi and Brooke are told both in present time and with flashbacks, weaving together love, loss, tragedy and friendship. Stewart skillfully entertains and engages the reader with each character's private pain and survival skills."―Romantic Times on Broken Wings
About the Author
Carla received two American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) Genesis awards for unpublished authors. The novel that won in 2007 went on to become her first published novel-Chasing Lilacs which has garnered many rave reviews including a Starred Review from Publishers Weekly and 4 ¿ stars from Romantic Times Reviews. Her second novel, Broken Wings, releases in June 2011.
Carla graduated from the University of Oklahoma and worked as a registered nurse for a number of years. She and her engineer husband are the parents of four married sons and relish the adventures of their six grandchildren. She enjoys a good cup of coffee, great books, and weekend getaways with her husband.
More About the Author
Her debut novel, Chasing Lilacs, received a starred review from Publishers Weekly, was an Oklahoma Book Award Finalist, the trophy winner for the 2011 Best Fiction Book for Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. and received 2nd place honors in RWA's Inspirational Readers Choice Award for 2011. Carla loves to hear from readers and invites you to contact her and learn more about her writing at www.carlastewart.com.
Top Customer Reviews
HEAT RATING:Sweet: No sex or scenes of physical intimacy except some kissing. No graphic violence or profanity.
REVIEWED BY: AprilR, My Book Addiction and More
Carla Stewart is the author of Stardust! She takes us back in time and introduces us to Georgia and her two daughters. Georgia learns her husband has been cheating on her and then she learns her husband has died. Can you even imagine?? Georgia has quite the journey as she first learns of the motel she has inherited. She is such a strong woman, a loving woman too. As new "guests" come and go at the Stardust, one day she is faced with a decision... to forgive and move on, or not. From grief and betrayal to forgiveness and peace, Stardust is a wonderful read and if you are like me, you will fall in love with the characters and will hate to turn that last page!!
I must warn you, when you pick up Stardust, you may NOT be able to put it down! or at the very least it will be attached to your arm and will go everywhere with you until you finish it :)
Georgia Peyton is a true southern gentlewoman; strong, yet open and kindhearted. She's gracious and generous, but not a pushover. What she gives, she does of her own choice. She quietly carries her hurts, longings, and betrayal, but remains loyal, regardless of whether or not it's deserved. The kindness she shows to her cheating dead husband's mother first comes from her instinctive sense of duty, but, as Georgia is challenged to dig deeper throughout this story, her care for Mary Frances comes from an untapped place in her core, borne out of compassion. I love this! I also admire the way her unconventional friendship with Ludi, the black woman from the bayou, begins so naturally. She slips it on like a favorite sweater, without regard to the constant censure of people in her life and community who can't see past color, fear, and bigotry.
Georgia is a woman who shows patience and respect for others even when she doesn't agree with them, yet she still has plenty of room to grow. Her life has been fraught with unanswered questions and memories that eat at her sense of security. In this story, when the polio epidemic moves in closer to home and fear escalates, Georgia must make difficult choices that affect those she loves. In the midst of fear, confusion, and the unknown, she must keep her head and consider what's best in the long run for others, and to follow through by faith.
Through forgiveness and surrender, she finds the love and peace she seeks, and I love that. Faith is ironic that way, best tested and strengthened when the outcome is unknown. An example of this is seen in one major test of Georgia's strength and grace: the challenge and opportunity to help her dead husband's mistress.Read more ›
Carla Stewart's writing is easy to read and she puts a steady pace in the narration that makes you never feel bored or never feel like skipping pages to get to the "action". Each chapter is very objective and it tells a important part of the story (no fillers at all).
She also created very interesting and believable characters. She managed to not demonize or sanctify anyone. Even the people that do some "bad" things are shown as regular people who makes mistakes, like it is in real life.
I enjoyed seeing the changes that the characters went through. I don't intend to give away any spoilers, so let me just say that there are lessons for us there. There are lessons about love, forgiveness, the importance of family ties, the problem with keeping secrets, just to mention a few.
As I read, I kept thinking what a great amount of research Carla must've done to be able to work with all the details about the time period (the 1950's) and the polio outbreak. Her details are so rich and they help involve the reader in the story.
Stardust is the kind of fiction book that I like the most: a very well written and beautiful story that entertains us and teaches us important life lessons.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book through NetGalley.com in exchange for my honest review.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This story held me from start to finish. I loved the characters and setting. If you like a taste of days gone by, and a kind story filled with emotion treat yourself to this... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Donna Bolk
This book was absolutely fantastic. So much better than I anticipated. Must read! Ending was a total surprise. Loved it!Published 8 months ago by Sandra Phillips
I listened to this as an audiobook from Oklahoma to Indiana. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to it and getting to know Georgia, her family and her friends.Published 13 months ago by Lisa Hendrick
Carla Stewart has swiftly become one of my favorite authors. Stardust is a beautiful story, well-crafted and emotionally relatable. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Connilyn Cossette
This is the first book I've ever read by Carla Stewart. It won't be my last. Her book captured my attention from page one. Read morePublished 21 months ago by terri tiffany