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Download What Came from the Stars Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample What Came from the Stars Audiobook, by Gary D. Schmidt Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (529 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Gary D. Schmidt Narrator: Graham Winton Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2013 ISBN: 9781470340209
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The Valorim are about to fall to a dark lord when they send a necklace containing their planet across the cosmos, hurtling past a trillion stars … all the way into the lunchbox of Tommy Pepper, sixth grader, of Plymouth, Massachusetts. 

Mourning his late mother, Tommy doesn’t notice much about the chain he found, but soon he is drawing the twin suns and humming the music of a hanorah. As Tommy absorbs the art and language of the Valorim, their enemies target him. When a creature begins ransacking Plymouth in search of the chain, Tommy learns he must protect his family from villains far worse than he’s ever imagined.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Wonderfully strange...This inventive and memorable story...manages to mingle the quotidian and the movingly supernatural. It’s funny, too.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • Highly recommended...The presentation is unique and packed with bravery, loyalty, friendship, mystery, and adventure.”

    Children’s Literature

  • “Award-winning author Schmidt is a wondrous writer...A wonderful story.”


  • “[An] artful interplanetary story.”

    Horn Book (starred review)

  • “Schmidt, already a bestseller and award winner, should pick up even more fans with this crowd-pleasing fantasy.”


  • “[A] boldly imagined outer-space offering.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Benji Martin | 2/20/2014

    " When I found this book on the shelf at Barnes and Noble two days before it was supposed to come out, I was thrilled. It was very good. It reminded me a LOT of A String in the Harp. A kid just lost his family, and finds a relic which magically connects him with a different culture. Schmidt's writing is terrific just like in Okay For Now, and his descriptions of the setting were great. I feel like, I've actually been to Plymouth now. Really, really good book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennifer | 2/16/2014

    " This half sci-fi, half contemporary realistic story about a 6th grade boy named Tommy Pepper who finds an intergalactic necklace that holds all the art and knowledge of a far away civilization at war unfortunately didn't work for me. And I say unfortunately because up until now, I haven't met a Schmidt book I didn't like. But I have to admit to being flummoxed by the sci-fi chapters about the Valorians, which were written in an archaic style and employed a special vocabulary that was difficult to interpret even with the glossary. Still, the chapters that took place in Tommy's world were vintage Schmidt: perfectly rendered realistic portraits of children, their families, school and community that were moving and sweet. I will be interested in finding out if my reaction is due to my sludgy adult brain. It may be that my middle school students won't have the same difficulty dealing with the Valorian language as I did. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kristen Unger | 2/15/2014

    " Gary D. Schmidt, why did you do this to me?!? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dolores | 1/27/2014

    " So, I've heard that some people are disappointed with this one. I think the first problem is that this is just not meant for the usual Gary Schmidt audience. I kind of considered it two books in one. One of those books DID feel very much like a Gary Schmidt. That was the story of a family that had lost its heart and soul and was learning to cope. Great characters, great heart, great story. All Gary Schmidt trademarks. But there was a parallel story here and that was the one that seemed to give some people problems. The sci-fi thing. Now, while I enjoy science fiction, I wouldn't exactly say I'm the biggest fan. Science fiction books often take themselves FAR too seriously for me with the ponderous, portentous language--as though they were writing about tremendous, important events instead of fiction. In my opinion, Gary Schmidt put his tongue firmly in his cheek and mocked those books with his take on science fiction books here. Lovingly, I'm sure. However. It makes for some heavy going. Will your average kid take the time to wade through the mire? Not sure. Am I glad I did? Absolutely. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Vi | 1/7/2014

    " Another one of those fantasy stories blended with real life. Reminds me of a non-violent, children-friendly Marbury Lens. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robert Carter | 1/3/2014

    " Any Gary Schmidt is good, but this just doesn't reach the classic level of Wednesday Wars and Okay for Now, two of my favorite books of all time. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Toni | 9/26/2013

    " Not as good as Schmidt's other books. This is a mix of a realistic story with sci-fi. I do enjoy sci-fi and high fantasy, I did not like that part of this book and found myself just skipping whole parts of it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Teresa | 9/6/2013

    " I'm torn about my feelings for the book. It took me a long time to get into the other world and then I didn't think there was enough of it. I had to push myself to finish reading it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jennifer Denney | 8/29/2013

    " I love Gary Schmidt's books, so I was surprised that this one was sci-fi. I found the other world chapters very difficult to follow or care about. The parts on Earth were better, but still not great. I will have to stick with his other books! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Carol | 7/10/2013

    " Since I REALLY enjoyed Schmidt's Wednesday Wars and Okay for Now, I was terribly disappointed in his new book. Perhaps it's because I'm not a fantasy fan. Also I thought the alternating chapters was confusing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melissa | 5/17/2013

    " Good, though I'm not sure it's good fantasy. "

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About the Author
Author Gary D. Schmidt

Gary D. Schmidt is the bestselling author of Okay for Now, the Newbery Honor and Printz Honor book Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy, and the Newbery Honor book The Wednesday Wars. He is a professor of English at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

About the Narrator

Graham Winton is a television, film, and voice actor. He has appeared on such television shows as Blue Bloods, Law & Order, All My Children, and As the World Turns. Also an audiobook narrator, his readings include Crow’s Landing by Brad Smith, What Came from the Stars by Gary D. Schmidt, and The Amarillo Trail by Jory Sherman.