The Stars Shine Bright – Book Review


This is the second book I’ve read by Sibella Giorello. The first was The Clouds Roll Away. I was excited to get a chance to review The Stars Shine Bright. This is the fifth book in the Raleigh Harmon series. I have not read the first or the third, but don’t worry if you haven’t either. Each book is great on it’s own.

In this book, Raleigh Harmon, a FBI agent is doing some undercover work in Seattle at a thoroughbred horse track. The races seem to be fixed and horses are getting sick. But when horses start dying and Raleigh’s life is at stake, she knows something more is going on.

Raleigh is also dealing with her mother having a breakdown and not talking to her and her fiance, who wnats her to quit her job and come  live with him to another agent, Jack, who wants to be more than just a collegue.

With days to go before the track is over for the season, Raleigh must find out who is behind the killing.


Excerpt from the book:

After the FBI suspends her for bending its rules, Special Agent Raleigh Harmon is looking for a chance to redeem her career and re-start her life.
Sent undercover to a thoroughbred horse track, Raleigh takes on a double life to find out who’s fixing the races. But when horses start dying and then her own life is threatened, Raleigh realizes something bigger—and more sinister—is ruining Emerald Meadows.
She’s never felt more alone.
Her one contact with the FBI is Special Agent Jack Stephanson, a guy who seems to jump from antagonistic to genuine friend depending on the time of day. And she can’t turn to her family for support. They’re off-limits while she’s undercover, and her mother isn’t speaking to her anyway, having been confined to a mental hospital following a psychotic breakdown. Adding insult to her isolation, Raleigh’s fiancé wants them to begin their life together—now—precisely when she’s been ordered not to be herself.
With just days left before the season ends, Raleigh races to stop the killing and find out who’s behind the track’s trouble, all the while trying to determine if Jack is friend or foe, and whether marrying her fiancé will make things better—or worse.
Raleigh is walking through the darkest night she’s faced, searching for a place where the stars shine bright.
Meet Sibella Giorello:
Sibella Giorello grew up in the mountains of Alaska admiring the beauty and nature that surrounded her. She majored in geology at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts hoping to learn more about the landscape she loved back home. From there Sibella followed a winding path, much like the motorcycle ride she took across the country, which led to her true love, journalism.
She found herself in Seattle writing for rock-n-roll magazine and earned a journalism degree from the University of Washington before heading south to the land of great stories.
In Virginia, Sibella became a features writer for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. It was there she also met her husband and would hear Jesus whispering her name at a tent revival.
Sibella started writing about Raleigh Harmon as a way to keep her love of story-telling alive while staying at home with her young sons. As a journalist and author, her stories have won state and national awards, including two nominations for the Pulitzer Prize. The Stones Cry Out, the first Raleigh Harmon novel, won a Christy award for debut novel in 2008. Sibella now lives in Washington state with her husband and sons.
Visit Sibella Giorello online at, Facebook or Twitter.

Buy the book here and see other reviews here.


I'm a mother of 2 who likes to get involved in too much! Besides writing here I started a non-profit, I'm on the PTO board, very active in my community and volunteer in the school. I enjoy music, reading, cooking, traveling and spending time with my family. We just adopted our 3rd cat and love them all!

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  1. Sounds like an interesting book.

  2. Great review!

  3. This sounds like a good read.

  4. Oh, now I’m wondering if she ditches her fiance for her partner. Going to have to check this out!

  5. Sounds like an interesting read!

  6. so many times I wish I had time to read but I have a good friend who loves to read I’ll have to suggest this book

  7. Oh this sounds like a good book, thanks for sharing!

  8. Not usually my kind of book, but sounds interesting.

  9. Great review. I’ll have see if my library has it.

  10. Sounds like a great book &I’ve been looking for something to read, thanks!

  11. This sounds like a really interesting book. I need to find some time to read.