Shake the Stars (Kirstin’s Review)

Title: Shake the Stars
Author: V.L. Locey
Publisher: Gone Writing Publishing
Release Date: July 10th 2019
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 100,000 words approx.
Reviewed by: Kirstin
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5


Spending time in the Poconos with his family was the last thing Dane Forrester wanted to do over the summer. He had dreams of spending his last break touring Europe and gathering story ideas for his upcoming creative writing classes before heading to college. Maybe even finding that elusive first love in a small café in Paris, or along the Rhine, or even in a sultry villa in Italy. But no, he was stuck at the Silver Fir Lodge with his family where his dreams of romance and passion would wither and die a slow painful death, or so he imagined.

When all seemed lost, the budding wordsmith is saved—in more than one sense—by Khalid Novak, a lifeguard at the lodge’s pool. Khalid is two years older, a bit more sophisticated, and the most incredibly alluring thing Dane has ever seen. The two young men find themselves joyously wound in a searing romance that teaches Dane that love can be wildly intense yet fleeting so one should revel in it when the discovery is made.

Can this summer romance survive the chill of autumn as well as the winds of time?

This is a difficult book for me to rate, honestly. As far as second chance stories go, this definitely fit the bill, but it had a strange good ol’ days feel to it that I’m not quite sure I liked. As soon as Dirty Dancing was referenced, that’s exactly where my brain went. There was very much a ‘Nobody put’s baby in the corner’ vibe.

Things that I loved:

-How much the characters were willing to give up to be together
-The support of Dane’s brother and, eventually, Mother
-The perfect prose that is a VL Locey story
-The end

Things that didn’t work for me:

-It took quite a while to get into the story
-I do hate a long period of being apart, but knowing it was a second chance premise it comes with the territory
-Dane’s father wasting 10 years
-The strange feeling of being in a time warp

Even though the first half of the book was a bit daunting, VL Locey brought out the big guns for the last half and wooed me big time. Her writing is gorgeous and flowy. She can overwhelm your heart in one sentence, then have you cracking up in the next.

If you are a fan of VL Locey’s writing, you’ll love this romantic jewel of a tale that reminds you that love can conquer and triumph and it’s never too late.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Shake the Stars provided by author in exchange of an honest review.


Reading has become such a huge part of my life as an adult. I love the escape, but I also try to take something from each story for myself. I am a lover of words. I love dialogue. I love a slow burn and a happy ever after. Favorite Authors: Garrett Leigh, Amy Lane, Mary Calmes, Lane Hayes, T.J. Klune, Roan Parrish, N.R. Walker, Cara Dee, Anyta Sunday