Review: Where the Stars Still Shine by Trish Doller

Where the Stars Still Shine 
By Trish Doller
Expected Release Date: Sept. 24, 2013
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children
Source: Bloomsbury through NetGalley
Reviewed by: Jenn
Links: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Goodreads / IndieBound

My rating: 5 stars out 5 stars

Stolen as a child from her large and loving family, and on the run with her mom for more than ten years, Callie has only the barest idea of what normal life might be like. She's never had a home, never gone to school, and has gotten most of her meals from laundromat vending machines. Her dreams are haunted by memories she'd like to forget completely. But when Callie's mom is finally arrested for kidnapping her, and Callie's real dad whisks her back to what would have been her life, in a small town in Florida, Callie must find a way to leave the past behind. She must learn to be part of a family. And she must believe that love - even with someone who seems an improbably choice - is more than just a possibility.

Trish Doller writes incredibly real teens, and this searing story of love, betrayal, and how not to lose your mind will resonate with readers who want their stories gritty and utterly true.

- I thought that she was a very strong female character. She has this fight for survival in her.
- Like her mom said, she could have turned out to be a jaded, hard person, but she didn’t.
     -She’s just a really nice person. She could have turn Kat away and she could have been a bitch to Phoebe but she wasn’t.
- I just didn’t like how she continued to lie and lie. I understand she’s not used to trusting people or depending on them, I just wanted her to stop lying.
- Her slow relationship with Greg, her dad. Love. She slowly trusted him and he never pushed. Just waited for her to be ready.

- Nicely paced
- So wonderful, and gritty, and well done. I’ve seen some books that have similar storyline but they didn’t pull it off like this one. It seems more real and the characters are redeeming.
- And the wonderful writing definitely helps the book.

Secondary Characters:
- Kat is wonderful best friend. Although pushy at times, she just wants her best friend to be happy, and feel like she’s loved and she has all the qualities that remind me of my own best friend.
- Greg/dad is perfectly written. He gives Callie the space and love that she needs as she gets used to having a family again, as she deals with learning how to have healthy relationships.
- Callie’s grandmother, or Yiayoula, is one kick ass lady and I love how fierce she is towards anyone hurting Callie. And I love that she doesn’t even let Callie get away with thing Greg lets her get away with. While Greg gives her times, she goes straight for Callie and has her deal with things as they happen. And she was very intuitive when noticing how Callie ran away but not because she doesn’t care, but that she was running away to someone.

- Oh my. Alex certainly is a unique love interest for me. Callie and Alex didn’t start out as insta-love (and for that I’m forever grateful) but they were attracted to each other.
- I really like how their relationship slowly progressed. It was nicely done and slow that it totally snuck up on me just like Callie. It sort started off with a few hangouts and then a conversation here and there. Telling of secrets and before you know it, Callie was telling Alex her biggest secrets.

I really enjoyed this book. I found it to be such a good and touching read and I just fell in love with the characters. I would recommend it to anyone who loves a sad but touching story and I can’t wait to get my own copy.


  1. I keep reading great reviews of this book, I'm going to have to add it to my TBR list. I like that the romance is not insta-love, and that Callie is such a strong character. Great review! ~Pam


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