Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Moon and More

The Moon and More
Sarah Dessen
435 pages
Released: June 4, 2103
Publisher: Viking Juvinille
Source: purchased

© Panda Reads

You can read the Goodreads summary here.

I love Sarah Dessen's writing.  I could gush about it for hours (I'll spare you) so needless so say, I was out buying this book the day after it came out.  Above is a pic of how great that day was - my signed copy and a SBUX Frappucino.  Good day, good day.  Now bear with me as I try to organize my thoughts about this one because finished reading it a week ago while I was on vacation and have since finished two other novels.  This is why I need to write reviews right away.

Emaline has lived in Colby all her life and this is her last summer there before college.  Her plans include working at her family's beach resort and hanging out with her longtime boyfriend, Luke.  But when a handsome young man moves into one of the beach houses to film a documentary, and when Emaline's biological father shows up in town with her half-brother, Emaline's life is turned upside down as she starts questioning everything she's ever known up to this point.

The Moon and More is a definite coming of age novel.  Emaline is about to head off to college, and everything she's ever known is about to change.  Not just moving away from home, but suddenly her relationship with Luke doesn't seem as perfect as it once was.  Theo is handsome and, coming from New York, somewhat exotic to Emaline.  He seems devoted to her, as well.  Enter the love triangle.

A note about the love triangle in The Moon and More: I couldn't fall for it.  Usually in a love triangle there's one guy I'm rooting for, one guy who I think has the most chemistry with the girl, one guy I think should win.  But I didn't feel much chemistry between Emaline and Luke or Emaline and Theo.  Thus, the romance wasn't the most interesting part of the novel for me.  The most interesting part of the novel to me was, hands down, the documentary subject.  It might sound silly, being interesting in the Colby resident who created a bunch of art in the nineties and now wants to hide from it, but I think there was a lesson in there, too.

Of course, love was not the only change Emaline was facing and heavier topics were handled in The Moon and More, as well.  Emaline's biological father never had a major part in her life.  When he decides to help her out with college and then has to take it back, he visits Colby and Emaline must deal with her father in person.  On the other side, Emaline's mother's husband, who Emaline calls Dad, is more of a father to Emaline than her biological father could be.  It's a tough topic to cover, but Sarah Dessen does it wonderfully.  The whole situation seemed extremely realistic.  Family was an important topic in the novel and it's was really what it was all about.

Four stars!  While The Moon and More wasn't my most favorite Sarah Dessen novel, it still had that special je ne sais quois that only Sarah Dessen can accomplish.  I love her writing style and The Moon and More made me giggle more than once.  It's definitely worth a read, especially if you're a huge fan of contemporaries and/or Dessen's other works.

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