Title: Stardust by Carla Stewart
Publisher: Hachette Book Group
Genre: Historical (1950s), Christian, Fiction
Length: 336 pages
Book Rating: A
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
Shortly after burying her unfaithful husband, Georgia Peyton unexpectedly inherits the derelict Stardust motel from a distant relative. Despite doubts from the community and the aunt who raised her, she is determined to breathe new life into it. But the guests who arrive aren’t what Georgia expects: Her gin-loving mother-in-law; her dead husband’s mistress; an attractive but down-on-his-luck drifter who’s tired of the endless road; and an aging Vaudeville entertainer with a disturbing link to Georgia’s past.
Can Georgia find the courage to forgive those who’ve betrayed her, the grace to shelter those who need her, and the moxy to face the future? And will her dream of a new life under the flickering neon of the STARDUST ever come true?
Stardust by Carla Stewart is an extraordinary novel about redemption, overcoming adversity despite overwhelming odds and the healing power of forgiveness. It is a beautiful lesson in faith and trust in God as Georgia Peyton struggles to let go of the past and make a new life for herself and her young daughters Avril and Rosey.
Georgia is a strong woman with an open and giving heart. She unflinchingly faces life head on and she is definitely her own woman, forging her own path in the wake of her unfaithful husband O’Dell’s death. She stands up for what she believes in and she speaks her mind. Georgia is very open-minded for the time period and she has a diverse group of friends. Her love and patience for her mother-in-law is heartfelt and quite touching as is her unorthodox but close friendship with Ludi Harper. But it is her willingness to lend a helping hand to O’Dell’s mistress that reveals the true depth and generosity of her loving spirit.
Carla Stewart paints a vivid and authentic portrait of life in a southern small town in the 1950s. Stradust is an intricately woven and unforgettable story that is complex with many different layers. The characters are magnificently drawn with realistic flaws and imperfections. Infidelity, alcoholism and segregation are just a few of the different topics explored in this compelling novel of love, faith and salvation.