By: Ethan Joella
Publication Date: 07/02/2024
My Rating: TBR
From the author of the Read with Jenna Bonus Pick A Little Hope, an uplifting and emotionally resonant novel set in a Delaware beach town about a local restaurant owner at a turning point.
Three generations of Schmidts have run their family’s beachfront restaurant and Jack has been at the helm since the death of his father. Jack puts the demands of the restaurant above all else, with a string of failed relationships, no hobbies, and no days off as proof of his commitment to the place. He can’t remember the last time he sat on the beach, or even enjoyed a moment to himself.
Meanwhile, the DelDine group has been gradually snapping up beloved eateries along this stretch of coast and are pursuing Jack with a very generous offer to take Schmidt’s off his hands.
Jack craves companionship and maybe even a family. He wonders if closing the door on the restaurant might open a new window for him. But who would he be without Schmidt’s, and can he trust DelDine’s claims that they will continue to employ his staff and honor his family’s legacy?
When he receives startling news from the past, Jack begins to reshape his life and forge unexpected new friendships. But will he really let go of the very things that have defined him?
"A touching tribute to a cherished place and the people who make it home.”
—Nikki Erlick, New York Times Bestselling author of The Measure
"I recognized and rooted for all the wonderful small-town characters in this moving story about a man at a crossroads in his life. Ethan Joella skillfully explores how grief shapes us, and he captures those perfect moments of human connection we all crave."
—Tracey Lange, author of We Are the Brennans
"Ethan Joella writes with wisdom and emotional precision about the ache to feel alive and the unexpected ways relationships comfort, devastate and transform us. Absorbing, tender and filled with heart, The Same Bright Stars moved me with its unwavering hope."
—Hanna Halperin, author of I Could Live Here Forever
"With his signature heart, hopefulness and hard-won wisdom, Ethan Joella more than delivers in The Same Bright Stars. Readers will laugh, cry, and dream alongside the earnest, sentimental Jack and his instantly lovable, warm-hearted community of Rehoboth Beach natives, a town that sparkles to life from the very first page. With his story of family, grief, legacy, and perseverance, Joella has crafted a sensational summer read. I will forever feel lucky to read (and yes, unabashedly weep over!) anything Joella. writes."
—Becky Chalsen, author of Kismet
About the Author
Ethan Joella grew up in northeastern Pennsylvania. He teaches English and psychology at the University of Delaware and specializes in community writing workshops and online instruction. His work has appeared in River Teeth, The Cimarron Review, The MacGuffin, Delaware Beach Life, and Third Wednesday. He lives in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, with his wife and two daughters.