Reese Witherspoon isn’t straying far from her beloved home state of Tennessee with her new book club pick.

 The actress is urging her fans to read Jojo Moyes’ The Giver of Stars, set in Great Depression-era Kentucky, she announced on Instagram. It’s the 30th book she’s selected for her book club, which she launched in June 2017 with Gail Honeyman’s Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine.


“For years I’ve been a huge Jojo Moyes fan,” Witherspoon enthused. “Her characters are so compelling and y’all already know how much I love historical fiction! Set in Kentucky during the 1930’s, the story follows a small group of women known as the Horseback Librarians of Kentucky. It’s such a great narrative about personal strength and really captures how books bring communities together, especially for these women who are completely bonded by their love of literature.”

A reviewer for Kirkus praised Moyes’ novel in a starred review as “a love letter to the power of books and friendship.”

The Giver of Stars has attracted controversy, however. In October, author Kim Michele Richardson said she found “disturbing similarities” between her novel, The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek, and Moyes’ novel. Moyes’ publisher pushed back on the allegation, saying Moyes had never read Richardson’s book.

Witherspoon’s book club is enormously popular with readers. Her selection of Delia Owens’ Where the Crawdad Sings in September of 2018 contributed to that book’s astronomic popularity; last December, Variety reported that Witherspoon is producing a film adaptation of the book.

Michael Schaub is an Austin, Texas-based journalist and regular contributor to NPR.