Cover Image: In Little Stars

In Little Stars

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Member Reviews

TW: racism

I’ve never quite read a book like In Little Stars. The plot is based around a Romeo and Juliet type romance in a post- Brexit England between Rachid and Jodie (the star-crossed lovers even have the same initials!). The book follows their POVs as well as their mother’s which adds another narrative of the thoughts and opinions of those on both sides of the Brexit vote. 

Just based on the blurb- I knew it was a book I had to read…and now that I have read it, I truly recommend it to everyone.

I think it’s rare that an author can capture views of multiple characters in a realistic way. It can often be a challenge to dig deep and develop one character to portray their truth, let alone for multiple individuals in a book. However, I really felt that Linda Green was able to do this and flesh them out in such a way that it felt truly real. Consequently I found myself often pausing and reflecting throughout this novel- something which I love.

I found it particularly interesting how Green wrote the POVs of Rachid’s and Jodie’s mothers. Sylvie’s and Donna’s POV were largely written in the past tense, unlike the POVs of their children which were in the present tense. I felt that the use of the present tense for Rachid and Jodie really emphasised their emotions and gave it more importance so that it transcended the negative racial narratives explored in more detail in the mother’s POVs. These small details that Green put into the novel was was appreciated and really paid off. 

One of the top stories of this year!

Read: for a forbidden love story like no other ❤️
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This has all the stars and more from me.

If there was ever a book that had a moral to a story, this is it!
If there was ever a book that held a message for us all, this is it!

Two families. 
Both sides of Brexit and how that affected certain people.

A Muslim family and a white family.
The differences couldn’t have been any clearer than this.

Each morning both Mothers are on the same train to work each day. Neither know each other. 
Their lives unknowingly become intertwined. 

This is a love story. A story within a story.
A love story like no other.

These are two Mothers with parental deep heartfelt love.
Yet, some people in this world love to hate. Some hate to love.

Some like to protest quietly, others just join in for the provocation they can stir up.

Some parents do not realise how their examples or words they use or reactions behind closed doors can be replicated through offspring, then reap the un rewards that brings and the trouble.

Which made me think, why do some think that because we look different, sound different or not of the same faith or skin have the right to harm others? We are all human.
Flowers grow in many colours, give off many scents, they are beautiful and so are we in any form, in any colour in any faith etc

Seeing this book was based on events and the authors thoughts and realism of facts I think this hit home to me more.

It’s hard to Stand Up. 
It’s harder to carry guilt if you see someone being attacked. Our instinct is to not get involved for many reasons, our own safety, our fear, our “turning a blind eye”. Then, it’s on the news. 
You did nothing.
What then?

An absolutely stunning gut wrenching tear breaker. I dare you not to cry somewhere in this book.
I dare you not to be completely compelled to Stand Up.
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It doesn't feel right to say I love this book but I did in the sense that I could not put it down. It is a really hard-hitting read but it is one that is deeply moving, deeply powerful and deeply compelling. It is a truly captivating novel.
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It's rare that I don't write my review straight after finishing a book, as I like to get my thoughts out quickly and then move on to the next book. 
However, this book needed some serious consideration. 
I have loved Linda Green's book before, I don't even need to read the blurb. Her characters are wonderfully written, but she writes a compelling plot to combine them with. 
That said, she has reached a whole new level in In Little Stars. I finished it on Friday night (early hours of Saturday) and still has me grabbed by the shoulders and consumed my waking thoughts ever since. 
This has been dubbed a 'modern retelling of Romeo and Juliet', and whilst there are several similarities, this book deserves to be praised on its own merit. I did love the R and J names of Rachid and Jodie though. Cute.
The plot is so cleverly constructed- the families whose lives, unbeknownst to them, cross several times, and become forever linked. The reader has an incredible sense of foreboding and dread as the book progresses as it reaches the main event, and this is through the multiple POVs. The narrative and the text message conversations keep it flowing and keep the reader gripped and reading well into the night. I also loved the Yorkshire accents of the characters- made them so much more real.
The ending is incredible. I cried. No, I BAWLED. Whenever I stopped crying, the next page would set me off again. My heart has been blasted into a million pieces. The role of all the characters and the parts they play in the story shook me to my core. I was reading it in bed and had to leave the bedroom in case my sobs woke my sleeping fiance!
Aside from the wonderful characters and clever plot though, are the real themes addressed by Green. It is set in the time of Brexit in Britain, and the racism that runs on the undercurrent of the book is brutally conveyed. It is painful to read, written to shock readers and highlight the attitudes of some people in Britain today. Green messaged me herself to say it 'pretty much destroyed her while writing it', and I can see why.
I have not been this affected by a book in years. It is one of my books of the year and will be difficult to beat. I genuinely feel like it has changed me as a person.
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In Little Stars is a modern day Romeo and Juliet retelling against the backdrop of post-Brexit in Yorkshire.
Rashid and Jodie (R&J) are teenagers meet at college and they immediately fall for each other however the path of true love never runs smooth and in a R&J retelling well it’s clear it’s not going to end well. 
Rashid, is Muslim with French parents who despite having lived in the UK for 20 years working for the NHS no longer feel welcome since the Brexit vote. Whereas, Jodie is from a working class background with a number of xenophobic family members. With their respective family situations, they need to keep their love affair secret as  neither family would be supportive of their relationship. 
It's an emotional  story (you need your tissues) covering the awful realities of racism in it’s many forms and really makes you question as a reader what allyship really means and what would you do when faced with racial abuse. It definitely would be a great book club choice as it would drive a great conversation. 
Thanks so much to @netgalley @lindagreenbooks and @ quercusbooks for this ARC in exchange for an honest review
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Beautiful, sad, thoughtful book.

Thanks so much to NetGalley and the publishers for letting me read this book in exchange for my review.
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Oh my goodness. What. A. Book. Set in Leeds in 2019, this is a modern retelling of Romeo and Juliet, but instead we have Rachid and Jodie. Rachid's family is from France, and his father, him, and his sister are Muslim, and the family are being made to feel increasingly unwelcome in the UK. Jodie is from a working class pro-Brexit family that strongly feel that Brexit is to claim back their country. Rachid and Jodie meet on their first day of college and instantly fall for each other. However this isn't just their story, it's the story of their mother's, Sylvie and Donna.

The plot echoes the Shakespearean tragedy in many ways, with Juliet's nurse's role in her aunt Lorraine, the role of Mercutio played by Rachid's friend Marcus, Juliet's cousin Tybalt is now Tyler. Instead of Friar Lawrence we have a Chapel Café where the lovers meet. There are lots of references to Paris the City, a nod to Juliet's fiancé in the original play, and lots of references to Prince the artist, a nod to Prince in the play who is the neutral party between the feuding families, and here represents a love of music where Rachid and Jodie find common ground.

The plot is beautiful, heartbreaking, eye-opening, and difficult to read in parts, but completely un-put-down-able throughout. Absolutely stunning. Thank you to Netgalley for the advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
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Oh my! I have just finished this book and the love I have for Jodiie and Sylvie is unreal.
I cried big fat tears reading this, Linda wrote with such feeling that it really felt like I was living their life

This book is so well written, it delves into the lives of 2 families one a mixed race family, French mother, Muslim father and their 2 teens, who were both born in the UK and a typical working class white family. It talks about the stereotypes they both suffer and how both families feel about the Brexit vote and the aftermath.

We meet Donna and Sylvie, who don’t know each other but travel the same train daily. We meet their families, especially their teenagers, who do meet and explore their relationships with themselves, their family and others around them

Highly recommend 
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this title
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This story was so beautifully written, poignant and heartbreaking in equal measure. It felt so real which is actually quite scary as we are in 2022 - where is such deep seated racial hate still a thing. 

The narrative of this wonderful novel is extremely emotional and thought provoking, refusing to shy away from the painful truth of racism. This may be a work of fiction, but I genuinely feel it needs to be part of all senior/college education to demonstrate the devastating effects of holding such views. 

On a positive note about the fictional element of the book - I love Jodie and Rashid and their beautiful connection. 
I also felt for the parents in this book as they all had their own issues they were dealing with. This is a fantastically written book on an extremely difficult subject. I will definitely be reading more Linda Green because she is a fabulous writer..
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This book became a very powerful read for me as I got further into the story. It was heartbreaking and brought tears to my eyes. Initially I struggled a bit with where the story was set, but then considered that there are pockets of people with views that are racist and sickening in their attitudes in any town or city. Told from the view point of the main characters, it highlighted how religion and culture are so badly perceived and the devastation this can cause. Thought provoking, the story highlighted modern day safeguarding issues such as grooming. It did strike me as the modern day Romeo and Juliet. Rachid and Jodie were young people with their whole life ahead of them and should have been able to enjoy being young and 'in love'.
A fantastic book by Linda Green that i felt truly deserved a 5 for how she tackles what can often be a taboo subject that is brushed under the carpet.
Many thanks to Linda Green, her publishers and Netgalley for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book.
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I enjoyed this book, it was easy to read and held my attention. I will be reading more from this author :)
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In Little Stars by Linda Green was another excellent book and I was gripped again from the very first few pages till the very end. Linda always has away of bringing you into the story and was beautifully written and so powerful.  

Two women Travel on the same train every day to work. They have never spoken to each other. Sylvie and Donna live on different sides of this bitter Brexit divide - Which has divided many families and friends in the UK. What they don't know is that their eldest children, Rachid and Jodie, are about to meet for the first time and fall in love. Aware that neither family will approve, the teenagers vow to keep their romance a secret. Sadly Sylvie's family is increasingly unwelcome in England, and all she wants is a better life for her family. This will 
threatens Rachid and Jodie's relationship with each other.

Can their love unite their families - or will it end in tragedy?

Wow, this book is so good I could not put it down once I started it. Then, again I am like this with all her books.
I highly recommend this book. I loved it. Plus, it was so true to what happened and is happening in the UK at the moment.

Big Thank you to NetGalley, Quercus Books and the author Linda Green for my ARC of In Little Stars in exchange for an honest review.
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I have read Linda Green novels in the past and always thoroughly enjoyed them, so when I seen her new book I took the chance to read it, without having to find out what it was about, I knew I would enjoy it. Well, not in a very long time has a booked moved me to tears. I couldn’t put it down, and I know there have been reviews relating it to Romeo & Juliet but I can assure you it is a wonderful story in its own right, and yes I see that once I had finished but my goodness I was so touched by it, I cannot get it and the characters out of my mind. The awareness the author has brought to just how awful society can be, how tough lives can be, yet how sometimes something good can come out of a horrible situation. Not to give any spoilers, the story of Jodie & Rashid and their very different families & upbringings brings joy, heartache and sorrow along the way. Such a well written and touching story, that will stay with me for some time to come. Highly recommended.
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What a fantastic book, i couldn't put it down. Brilliant style of writing, the story told from the differect perspectives of character was great. I shed a tear at the end, it really pulled on my heart strings. Highly recommend.
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Putting aside some of the political stereotypes attributed to characters on both side of the Brexit divide, I enjoyed this book and the love story that unfolded.
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I wanted to love this book set in a multicultural Britain. However I found things a little cliched and realise we're basically following the story of Romeo and Juliet but Brexit. An easy read that I'm sure many will love.
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In 2019, in a country bitterly divided after the Brexit vote Sylvie and Donna are two mothers living in Yorkshire when their children Rachid and Jodie, meet at college and fall in love. Rachid is the son of a French Moroccan Muslim father and Jodie is the daughter of a Brexit voting father with a racist brother who is becoming involved with a far right hate group. Fearing that their families will disapprove and try to prevent them from being together they begin meeting in secret. 
This is the second novel I've read by the author, and one of the most moving, emotional and compelling novels I've read for a long time. I sobbed when I reached the and also felt extremely angry and ashamed of the country we've become under right wing Tory governments.
The author writes with such emotion and sensitivity and really brings both families and the tensions in our country to life. She portrays the strength of the mothers who are both trying to understand their teenagers and keep their families together.
An emotional and heart breaking read that will stay with me for a long time. Highly recommended.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and review this digital ARC.
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This was simply excellent and my book of the year so far! It tugged at my heart strings and made me feel all the feelings. I loved this story - it was warm, touching and sad all at once.

The differing POV's were excellently done and each character had a distinctive voice. I enjoyed all of the characters but especially Sylvie.

This was such a powerful story that was well written and engaging. It touches on real life issues and is really thought provoking. 

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In Little Stars is a poignant story about love and hate.
It's so real it's scary, it's set in Englad but it could have been set wherever in the World because unfortunately the far-right and racist are raising their sh*tty heads everywhere.

Jodie and Rachid meets on the train to college and they fall in love. Their love is the one of the fairy tales, they are sweet and attentive, but they have to keep their relationship a secret because they come from families that wouldn't support their love. Jodie's father and brother are racist, while Rachid's father is muslim. Everything goes well until Rachid's family decides to go back to France, because after Brexit England doesn't let them feel welcome anymore, will they find a way to stay together? Or will they be separated for ever?

Linda Green beautifully told the story of these two different families at times of Brexit, her writing was so gripping I couldn't put the book down until the end.

I liked to read the two young lovers pov and also their mothers’, the four of them give a deeper feel to the story, that result in a more compelling read.
I especially appreciated how the author depicted Sylvie and Donna, these two mothers that do everything they can to protect their families, they even overlook their dear ones flaws in order to keep their families together.

I recommend to read this book because it's a must read but I also want to warn you that at the end of the novel my eyes hurt because I have cried too much.
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Another retelling of Romeo and Juliet, right down to the characters initials. A very easy read with little driving you to keep going. It is interesting to read it with the modern timeframe (Brexit) but as someone who lives in Britain, it can be a bit boring to read. Well written but not my cup of tea
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