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Extended Audio Sample Oh My Stars: A Novel Audiobook, by Lorna Landvik Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,757 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Lorna Landvik Narrator: Cassandra Campbell Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2005 ISBN: 9781415925270
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I am convinced that at birth the cake is already baked. Nurture is the nuts or frosting, but if you’re a spice cake, you’re a spice cake, and nothing is going to change you into an angel food.

Tall, slender Violet Mathers is growing up in the Great Depression, which could just as well define her state of mind. Abandoned by her mother as a child, mistreated by her father, and teased by her schoolmates (“Hey, Olive Oyl, where’s Popeye?”), the lonely girl finds solace in artistic pursuits. Only when she’s hired by the town’s sole feminist to work the night shift in the local thread factory does Violet come into her name, and bloom. Accepted by her co-workers, the teenager enters the happiest phase of her life, until a terrible accident causes her to retreat once again into her lonely shell.

Realizing that she has only one clear choice, Violet boards a bus heading west to California. But when the bus crashes in North Dakota, it seems that Fate is having another cruel laugh at Violet’s expense. This time though, Violet laughs back. She and her fellow passengers are rescued by two men: Austin Sykes, whom Violet is certain is the blackest man to ever set foot on the North Dakota prairie, and Kjel Hedstrom, who inspires feelings Violet never before has felt. Kjel and Austin are musicians whose sound is like no other, and with pluck, verve, and wit, Violet becomes part of their quest to make a new kind of music together.

Oh My Stars is Lorna Landvik’s most ambitious novel yet, with a cast of characters whose travails and triumphs you’ll long remember. It is a tale of love and hope, bigotry and betrayal, loss and discovery–as Violet, who’s always considered herself a minor character in her own life story, emerges as a heroine you’ll laugh with, cry with, and, most important, cheer for all the way.


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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michelle | 2/9/2014

    " I really love this author. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lyn Barr | 2/8/2014

    " There are so many twists and turns to the story, and yet it's not hard to follow at all. I fell in love with the characters and was eager to find out what happened to them all. Some components of the story are heartwarming, while others are tragic. Very, very worthwhile read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Barbara Lynn | 2/4/2014

    " Violet has had it with her home life and hopped on a bus and has ended up in North Dakota. From there her life turns for the better. She goes on an adverture that she never would have dreamed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mary | 2/2/2014

    " One of my favorite books, I loved it, loved it, loved it. Maybe I just haven't read enough books, but I feel I read a good many and I enjoyed this one a lot. I am tired to reading the same thing again and again, tired of knowing what the ending is before it happens. Usually I already know how it ends before it even hits the climax, but in this book I was utterly shocked and surprised. Her devotion to Kjel was something I hated, becauce I didn't like him to much, but I didn't like Austin very much either. But at the end, I loved all the characters for all they were. She is also one of the few female characters I don't find unbearably annoying. I usually find myself upset with main characters, and my expression is always very clear when reading books. And it was definately true in this one, so much I started to talk to my freinds about it so furiously they asked if Kjel and Violet went to our school. I actually have nothing bad to say about this book. It was wonderful, I'd re-read it and be happy, and I could barely tear my eyes from it. Definately a favorite. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kathleen Eigenbrode | 1/27/2014

    " I am totally intriged by this book. This is the second book I've read by Lorna Landvik. The first was Angry Housewives Eating Bon-bons. Oh, My Stars was totally different. I loved the characters, story, all of it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mary Lynne | 1/26/2014

    " My first Lorna Landvik book. The characters were fantastic, I didn't want to leave them. A spirit of survival, rich Americana, and layers of rich storyline....read this book! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bonnie G | 1/24/2014

    " This book is full of love. She writes a good story with surprising characters, but best of all you feel good when you finish one. I went to her book talk at my local library and was highly entertained. The characters just "come to her." What a cool gift! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jessie | 1/16/2014

    " I'm impressed how different this book is from Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons. And yet... so similar. I think I connected differently (and a little less) with this book. Nonetheless, she is able to take a tale I wouldn't normally want to read and make it into a book that I looked forward to reading each day (well, it only took me two days to read it, but still) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jan | 1/2/2014

    " I thought this was one of Lorna Landvik's better books. She didn't have so many characters that you couldn't keep them stright. I enjoyed this story of a girl overcoming her circumastances and ending up in an unlikely town and family. The ending was a little abrubt, but I liked anyway. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elizabeth | 12/25/2013

    " I was glad I read this. Delightful and sensitive. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Julie | 12/11/2013

    " I liked it! It was sweet and a very quick read. I thought Violet was a fun character and I really enjoyed her sense of humor. I was close to tears at some points and most books do not make me cry. Another one from Mom's bookshelf - my favorite bookstore! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stephanie Williams | 11/24/2013

    " the second half of this book is SO much better than the first half. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rachel | 11/19/2013

    " I thought I read this, but I haven't! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jan | 11/14/2013

    " This is really a great book. I loved it loved it loved it!!!! It is a great book about love and acceptance. It also is a great follow up to The Secret Life of Bees. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michele Bettinger | 6/3/2013

    " I just re-read this book. I love that this book takes you places you don't expect to go. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Linda Johnson | 4/3/2013

    " The first Lorna Landvik book I read was Angry Housewives Eating Bonbons which was great. This was great too and entirely different. If you liked "The Secret Life of Bees" I think you will like this one too. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 DeeAnn | 1/28/2013

    " Can't wait to read more by Ms. Landvik. My only wish is that there was less inappropriate language. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Adele | 10/3/2012

    " oh my stars,oh my stars, great book what more can i say lovely story plot is interesting keeps one moving..lets us realize there is so much in life to live.... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elissa | 9/3/2012

    " I would definitely say that this is Lorna Landvik best book (by far). The character development in this book is really well done and it still has a lot of the quirkiness and comedy of her other books. I also like that the book is hopeful. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Darlene | 8/24/2012

    " A new author I discovered by accident. A great read and I am looking forward to reading more of her works. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mandy | 8/7/2012

    " Very good. Lorna Landvik is an extremely gifted storyteller, drawing you into the life of a damaged girl, and making you love and wish the best for her, despite her flaws. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shannon | 7/29/2012

    " I really enjoyed this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kim | 7/7/2012

    " I was looking for something to read and the librarian recommended this. It was o.k. - interesting slice of life story of a young girl dealt a crummy hand in life that turned out pretty good. I could have done without the sprinkling of vulgarity, though. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lesley | 2/23/2012

    " Not my cup of tea. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laura | 6/22/2011

    " This was a great read. It is the Landvik that I started with and adored--heartwarming like Patty Jane's House of Curl. It will especially strike a chord with Midwesterners. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lisa | 6/9/2011

    " Slow to get started, but enjoyable and a quick read 2nd half. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Connie Klever | 6/7/2011

    " Great story about survival, family, and unlikely people falling in love. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kelly | 5/11/2011

    " LOVED it! I loved Violet, loved Austin, loved the name of the book and it's origin, loved the way the ends were tied up. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andrea | 4/24/2011

    " I'm so glad I found this author! Will go back and read her other books! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Becky | 3/29/2011

    " I'm delighted to say this is one of the best books I've read in a long time. Realizing I'm part of the miracle of life each and every day. This is one of those books you'll think about long after you are done reading it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kay | 3/20/2011

    " Good book, different premise and very enjoyable. I thought it got just a little slow towards the end "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jill | 2/2/2011

    " I think the main reason I liked this book so much is that I really related to the main female character in the book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Theresa | 2/2/2011

    " Another great Landvick read , didn't want to put it down "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kristen | 1/23/2011

    " I loved this story, but most of all I loved the characters. By the end of the book I felt like they were old friends. The transformation Violet went through in this book was incredible and empowering. I didn't want to put the book down and I never felt like it was moving too slowly. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Peggy | 1/16/2011

    " The heroine of this story beats the odds, exploring her abilities to love, grow and value others.
    Music is the background and unlikley characters accompany her on the way to a life unseen in the opening pages.
    This is a wonderful folksy tale of woman strength, friendship and love. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 DeeAnn | 12/12/2010

    " Can't wait to read more by Ms. Landvik. My only wish is that there was less inappropriate language. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lesley | 12/2/2010

    " Not my cup of tea. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Barbara | 11/18/2010

    " Violet has had it with her home life and hopped on a bus and has ended up in North Dakota. From there her life turns for the better. She goes on an adverture that she never would have dreamed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karin | 11/9/2010

    " this book was inspirational! It was sad and uplifting. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jackie | 11/8/2010

    " One of my most favorite books ever! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laurie | 10/28/2010

    " cute story! Enjoyed it very much! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Julie | 10/3/2010

    " I absolutely loved everything about this book; the writing style, the characters, and the story. I was sad when it ended! I seldom re-read books, but this is one that's calling me to pick it up again. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Emily | 9/13/2010

    " I thought it was a bit slow in parts. Over all it kept my attention. Characters were original and very well written. "

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About the Author
Author Lorna Landvik

Lorna Landvik is the author of the bestselling novels Patty Jane’s House of Curl, Your Oasis on Flame Lake, and The Tall Pine Polka. She is also an actor, playwright, and proud hockey mom.

About the Narrator

Cassandra Campbell, Audie Award–nominated narrator and winner of several Earphones Awards, has performed in regional theaters across the country and in several off-Broadway shows at the Public Theater and the Mint Theater. In addition to narrating audiobooks, acting, and directing, she is a commercial and documentary voice-over artist.