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The Stars Shine Bright (A Raleigh Harmon Novel) Paperback – July 16, 2012

4.4 out of 5 stars 97 customer reviews
Book 5 of 5 in the Raleigh Harmon Series

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Editorial Reviews


“. . . creative descriptions . . . authentic dialogue . . . she has that certain X factor . . .” (Novel Journey)

“. . . gifted novelist . . . more than once I found myself awed by her vivid word pictures.” (Crosswalk)

About the Author

Sibella Giorello began her writing career as a journalist. Her stories have won awards, including two nominations for the Pulitzer. Her novel The Stones Cry Out won a Christy Award. She lives in Washington State with her husband and family. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle edition for only $2.99 (Save 63%). Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.

Product Details

  • Series: A Raleigh Harmon Novel
  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (July 16, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595545360
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595545367
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,111,248 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Fresh out of college with no idea what to do with my life, I rode a motorcycle across the country--from Massachusetts to California. Blame it on reading "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance."

But that trip revealed a crucial piece of my future. Every town I passed through, I picked up the local newspaper. I liked reading about people--I liked hearing about their lives, their towns, their struggles. Not long after that 4,000-mile motorcycle trip, I landed a reporting job in America's most fabulous storytelling region: The South.

For ten years, I wrote features for two newspapers in Richmond, Virginia. Mostly, I wrote about ordinary people doing extraordinary things--an 80-year-old woman who grew up dirt-poor but suddenly became a celebrated poet; a family of six whose young father was diagnosed with brain cancer yet refused to lose hope; a city councilwoman who was half-crazy (maybe fully crazy) but really loved her constituents; a chaplain for Virginia's death row who listened to the inmates confess before execution. Those stories came my way like weighty blessings--I never felt worthy of writing them, yet here they were, asking to be written. Among other awards, they earned two nominations for the Pulitzer Prize. The people in those stories deserved to win; I didn't.

After having kids, I left daily journalism and started writing fiction. Raleigh Harmon, forensic geologist and sometime FBI agent, kicked her way into existence and has no plans for going away. Just the opposite. In addition to the many mysteries that feature her as an adult investigator, there's also a parallel YA Raleigh Harmon mystery series, which shows her fight for survival and meaning during the brutal high school years.

My husband, Joe, and I now live in the mountains of Washington state. Joe's a blues musician from Queens NY. So, a wise guy. Our sons are wise guys, too, proudly carrying forward our family tradition of sowing wild oats--really, just ask their school administrators.

If you'd like to know more about my books, or even me, please visit my website at www.sibellawrites.com.

You can also drop me a line on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/SibellaGiorelloAuthor
There's a whole tribe there of rocking Raleigh Harmon readers.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
In this latest in the series, FBI Agent Raleigh Harmon is back in the Seattle office. She is still under review from her Alaska cruise ship experience but is given an under cover assignment. She poses as the niece of a wealthy race horse owner and has the task of investigating why horses that have been winning suddenly begin to lose.
In addition to dealing with arrogant trainers and betting mobsters, she also has Jack as her immediate contact with the FBI. Jack, with his irritating sense of humor and apparent infatuation with Raleigh. And then her fiancé, DeMott, insists on flying out from Richmond with the dog dying for Raleigh's affection.
Raleigh's life is in danger as someone is out to harm the horses and get rid of her. And she puts her own career in danger (again) as she goes outside the bounds of accepted FBI protocol to track down the criminals. While she uncovers the animal loving terrorists who have been causing damage in the Pacific Northwest for years, she may be also ruining her own career.

I really like this series. Giorello is a gifted author. There is snappy dialog, quirky characters, and faith lived out in the day to day activities of Raleigh. Add to that the informative descriptions of the varied landscape of Washington State, from the scablands of eastern Washington to fault ridden Puget Sound. Geological background information is deftly woven into the story line. Living the Pacific Northwest, it is a treat to read about familiar places in a novel. And Giorello gets extra points for having Jack mention Deception Pass, a nearby favorite of mine.

This is a well written novel. Although it is the fifth book in a continuing series, Giorello weaves in enough background information from previous books that you won't be lost if this is the first you read.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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Format: Paperback
The Stars Shine Bright, fifth novel in Sibella Giorello's Raleigh Harmon series, is quick paced and quick witted, with special agent Harmon going undercover to discover who might be fixing races at a local thoroughbred horse track.

After almost losing her life in a locked stall when a fire breaks out and seeing horses come down with mysterious symptoms that are leading to their deaths, Harmon realizes there's a lot more at stake here than someone lining their pockets.

Matching wits with the bad guys, her "aunt" (a Tennessee Williams quoting stable owner), and FBI agent Jack Stephanson keeps her on the top of her game and keeps the reader chomping at the bit for more.

Although it may be the fifth book in the series, it is the first Raleigh Harmon book I have read, and after tapping the last page on my kindle I asked myself how in the world I could have missed this fantastic crime novel series. Raleigh Harmon has certainly risen to the top of my "favorite crime fighters" list.

Harmon is at her best with a case on her mind and a Glock in her hand, even as she struggles with affairs of the heart. She's smart, savvy, and sassy - all the while remaining sensitive to God's leading. She's the complete package, not only a special agent but also a forensic geologist, which satisfies my geeky side. (Is that a bent toward creation science I sense, Ms. Harmon?) She's also a caring daughter desiring a mended relationship with her mother, who was admitted into a mental institution after a break with reality.

If you have read the previous Giorello's books, I'm certain you will enjoy hanging out with Raleigh Harmon again. As a newbie to the series, I am certain that I will buy the previous novels and get to know special agent Harmon a bit better.
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Format: Paperback
Oh how I've missed FBI Special Agent Raleigh Harmon! I loved reading about her Alaska Cruise in the mountains bow down , and was looking forward to her next adventure! And, really, Jack is back in the picture! If you have read any of the books in the Raleigh Harmon series, you are probably wondering just as I was...what is going to happen with these two? My lips are sealed, you will have to read this book yourself to find out!

Giorello is an excellent author, one whose books I thoroughly enjoy! If you like FBI/romance/adventure type books, then this book is for you!

I give this book 5 stars, and even if it's the first book in the series you read, you're gong to love it!

**I was given this book by the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion**
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Format: Paperback
Do you know what every reviewer dreads the most? Having to write a review for a book they didn't like...written by an author they do like. And such is my case with Sibella Giorello's newest release. I know I'm probably in the minority here, but I just couldn't get into, or enjoy, The Stars Shine Bright as much as I had hoped.

I've only read two previous books in the series and, sadly, it seems this series is on a declining slope for me--I enjoyed The Clouds Roll Away, thought The Mountains Bow Down was 'okay', and didn't enjoy The Stars Shine Bright at all.

Please understand, it's not with a light heart that I say this. I really enjoy Giorello's writing--it's always fresh and crisp. And her ability to bring the characters to life was wonderful. Though, while I say that, I admit I didn't like the love triangle that continued on from The Mountains Bow Down into The Stars Shine Bright. I mean, I like Jack's character...but I just don't know what to think about him constantly trying to cause a rift in Raleigh's engagement so she'll break up with DeMott and marry him.

All in all, The Stars Shine Bright just wasn't for me. Maybe fans of this series will feel differently (and get irate at me for not enjoying it!)...but this is just one read that didn't work for me. The best to Giorello's future books, though! Her writing is always tight, crisp, and clean. Brings the story to life. :-)

I reviewed this book for Litfuse. Thanks to the publishers for sending me a review copy. It was not required that I write a positive review, but solely to express my thoughts and opinions on this book, which I have done.
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